Martin Scorsese‘s celebrated his 80th birthday on November 17, 2022. His Italian American heritage is important to him, as is family. Scorsese has even included his mother in several of his movies, most famously Goodfellas. Scorsese also made a documentary called Italianamerican in 1974, in which he interviewed his parents about their lives in New York, and their Sicilian heritage.
A 1990 documentary called The Scorsese Machine also followed Scorsese’s daily life at his office and visiting his parents. In this documentary, Scorsese discusses his early movies, such as Mean Streets with his parents. Scorsese says “these guys [the filmmakers] wanna know what you guys like in my movies” His father Charles says; “As far as Mean Streets, I liked it. But when I heard the language…I didn’t care for the language.”
His mother Catherine says; “When I heard the language, I hit him with my pocketbook and I said; ‘no one’s gonna come and see this picture.'” Charles says; “the acting was great. Bobby [De Niro] was out of this world. As I said before, when you saw him in that picture, he took the whole picture, he was great.”
Catherine says; “I love to watch my son direct. I just love to sit there and watch him direct the picture.” Charles says; “Raging Bull – that was a great picture. The fight scenes were so great…very powerful ideas.” Catherine says that she doesn’t like it when she’s cut out of her son’s movies. Martin Scorsese says; “she was cut out of Taxi Driver! She was Travis’ first passenger. Something had to go, you had to go, that’s it!”
Most people will be able to recognise plenty from this conversation with parents – his father brings up whether his son’s movies made any money, and also says that Scorsese got his ideas from him (his Dad). Good to know that being one of the best and most famous directors of all time changes nothing.
Find out whether there’s any Scorsese movies in our list of the best movies of all time.