Scorsese’s Silence Gathering

I attended a yacht party in Cannes today for Martin Scorsese and Silence, the long-gestating, much-delayed historical drama set in 17th Century Japan that Scorsese will finally begin directing in June 2014. Andrew Garfield, Ken Watanabe and Issei Ogata will costar. The floating soiree was thrown by Emmett/Furla Films, which is producing. The hosts were producers Randall Emmett and Emma Tillinger Koskoff.

(l.) 42West honcho Leslee Dart, (r.) director Martin Scorsese during yacht party earlier today for Silence.

Scorsese arrived about a half-hour after things began, and his publicist Leslee Dart allowed me to speak with him for about four minutes. Mainly we talked about the restored Shane (“I’m waiting to see it…I hear it looks fantastic”). He and George Stevens, Jr. conferred about Shane, he said (presumably about the aspect-ratio situation) and just before they were about to get in touch with Warner Home Video, which will release the Shane Bluray in August, they were told that WHV had flipped on the 1.66 aspect ratio position and that they’d decided to go with 1.37.

Scorsese also mentioned that work is being gone on forthcoming restorations of Nicholas Ray‘s Rebel Without A Cause, Elia Kazan‘s East of Eden and George StevensGiant. I told Scorsese that the restored Giant actually screened at the TCM Classic Film Festival last month, which he hadn’t been told about.

Scorsese said that he first resolved to direct Silence, an adaptation of a 1966 fictional novel by Japanese author Shūsaku Endō, in 1990. But that he and screenwriter Jay Cocks didn’t really get the script right until ’05 or ’06. Not a word has been changed in the script since.

Silence producer Randall Emmett, 42West’s Leslee Dart, producer Emma Tillinger Koskoff — Thursday, 5.26, 6:25 pm.

Set in 17th Century Japan, Silence is the story of a Jesuit missionary, Father Rodrigues (Garfield) who endured discrimination and persecution for his Christianity. It sounds grim and austere, but Koskoff assured me that Silence won’t be Kundun 2. In ’07 Scorsese announced his intention to direct an adaptation of Silence. In 2009 it was reported that Daniel Day-Lewis and Benicio del Toro had been signed to star. Earlier this year Garfield and Watanabe were announced as attached to the film adaptation, which enters production in June 2014.

Why is Scorsese in Cannes? Presumably to help raise Silence funds. I can’t believe he’d come all the way to Cannes just to attend a yacht party and schmooze with people like me.

  • Leslee Dart must really, really like you, man.

    • MisterQuigley

      Eagerly awaiting the Ira Parks’ ‘ship…

    • Eloi Wrath

      I wonder if Marty’s secretary, Thelma Schoonmaker, was there.

  • Bobby Cooper

    Like Jason Miller in THE EXORCIST, DDL and Del Toro are grown men who just radiate a crisis of faith while Andrew Garfield’s stock and trade is the anguished adolescent.

  • lazarus

    I’m more concerned with how Garfield is going to pull off being Portugese. Del Toro and DDL could have handled it, but him?

    Also, I’m guessing they still have to cast the other priest.

    • Ray Quick

      Since he played Brazilian in TSN he was Portuguese in that. You see, Brazilian = Portuguese. Amazing what you’d learn if you ever associated with people of color in real life


  • Ray Quick


    Like one more fucking Pesci, Vincent. RISPOLI, BURT YOUNG, De Niro, FORONJY-led mook fest in Little Italy with whackings and Frankie Vali songs and 2.5 hours like with F-bombs every other word and spaghetti and ALL FUCKING ITALIAN ACTORS and BIG CARS and shit? Did CASINO’s reception scare him off the ONE FUCKING THING we all really wanna see him doing?

    I mean, all his newer stuff is still really good, but other than BRINGING OUT THE DEAD, none of it has the NEW YORK MEATBALL VIBE… This would be like Michael Mann taking a 20 year detour to direct fucking musicals and biopics of boring religious figures.

  • “Please stop calling me Marty.”

  • “his publicist Leslee Dart allowed me to speak with him for about four minutes” — how very gracious…rolls eyes…at any normal party, you’d be able to hold a steady conversation without being rushed…rolls eyes…Hollywood types…

  • CBJ

    Yeah, god forbid it be as “bad” as “Kundun”, an interesting, gorgeous reverie.

    • lazarus

      Exactly. One day scholars are going to look back and wonder how that was ever considered “minor” Scorsese. His direction (plus Deakins’ photography) is out of this world.

      • zantetsupowaa

        Haven’t seen Kundun, but the marketing for it was pretty bad.

        • Raising_Kaned

          You haven’t seen much of anything, have you?

  • DukeSavoy

    More pictures of the boat next time.

  • Raising_Kaned

    Spending four minutes talking with Scorsese is probably like spending forty with most filmmakers.

  • Perfect Tommy

    The novel by Shūsaku Endō is excellent. Very excited Scorsese might finally be able to do this.