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Meryl Streep inspired one of the best Al Pacino movie roles

If in doubt, just do whatever Meryl Streep is doing. That's true for all of us, but it was certainly true for Al Pacino in this '80s movie.

Meryl Streep starred in The Devil Wears Prada

Al Pacino has been a part of some of the best movies ever made, but even the best actors are in need of some inspiration at times. And if you’re in search of inspiration, you can do a lot worse than taking a look at whatever Meryl Streep is doing – and then just doing that.


That’s what Pacino did when it came to the thriller movie Scarface. As a ruthless drug lord in the Miami underworld, Pacino delivered a blood-soaked acting masterclass in one of the best ’80s movies.

In the Blu-ray booklet for the drama movie (via Empire), Pacino explained how one of the best Meryl Streep movies helped him to embody Cuban refugee Tony Montana.

Pacino said: “I was very inspired by Meryl Streep’s work in Sophie’s Choice. I thought that her way of involving herself in playing someone who is from another country and another world was particularly fine and committed and… courageous.”

Sophie’s Choice was released just before Pacino began shooting Scarface in 1982 and starred Streep as a Polish immigrant in America. She won Best Actress at the Oscars for her performance.

Scarface received mixed reviews on its release, with renowned critic Roger Ebert among those to champion it. It was shut out at the Oscars, but did receive a Razzie nomination for Worst Director. Not the honour anybody would want.

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Now, though, Scarface is widely considered a classic and one of Pacino’s best performances. And given that he took inspiration from an Oscar-winning role by one of the all-time acting greats, that’s probably not very surprising at all.

For more big screen fun, check out the new movies heading to cinemas and streaming services this year.