“I acted for free for Scorsese and had a fight with Coppola. What grimaces between me and De Niro »- Corriere.it

of Valerio Cappelli

Memories of the great actor: «Actors are not strippers. I acted naked to tell a story: it fits ». Today he is the protagonist of Davide Ferrario’s film

Harvey Keytel, 82, speaks in a low voice, sips the words, weighs them. He is tired from the two flights he had to take from Los Angeles but he is kind, willing to recall his extraordinary life for the cinema. He is honorary president of the Sardinia Film Festival conceived and directed by Tiziana Rocca which opens tomorrow in Forte Village.

Pleased to meet you, Mr. Wolf …
He laughs: “That sentence, I’m Mr. Wolf and I solve problems, it was a brilliant idea by Tarantino in “Pulp Fiction”. It became a sort of his autograph, a catchphrase, people had a lot of fun ».

His characters are neurotic, violent, restless.
“The actors have to have an affinity with the character, they have to believe in him, the goal is that he is close to real life. Good people have happened to me who do bad things and vice versa, cinema brings out the complexity of life ».

In “Thelma & Louise”, however, she plays a good cop and that’s it.
“In Ridley Scott’s film, many women can be recognized. Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis put their hearts in it, it was great to see them act. It was written by a woman, Callie Khouri. In that male chauvinist world of abuse, he outlined the policeman who sympathizes with the two fugitives, a symbol of freedom. It was successful (in some respects also controversial) because it represented the nature of the male and female gender with depth and delicacy ».

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You, Martin Scorsese, Robert De Niro, you all started together.
“We were very young. Martin was looking for young actors willing to act for free, so he only shot on weekends since we did various jobs, waiters, dishwashers to survive … It was his first film, “Who is knocking on my door. ” It was 1967, I was 28 years old ».

How did he get the part?
“At the final audition Martin tells me to go down a hall, into a dark, empty room with a guy sitting down. I greet him, he answers me abruptly, there is a half-fight, we send each other to that country. A voice is heard: stop. It was Martin who tells me, this was an improvisation. I tell him it would have been a good idea if he had told me before. ‘

And how did you meet De Niro?
“We were both at the Actor’s Studio, I didn’t know anything about him but I immediately thought he was an incredible actor. We were in the lobby outside the classrooms, actress Mary Anisi introduced us. Bye Bye. We looked at each other and exclaimed: eh ha, oh. No words, only grunts which then turned into grimaces. We began to laugh. Then we found ourselves in “Mean Streets” e “Taxi Driver“By Scorsese”.

Why did it end badly with Coppola’s “Apocalypse Now”?
«It’s a long story, I had a friendly relationship with Coppola, then his company told me to sign a contract with which I would be under control for 3 to 5 years. I opposed it and they said: either you sign or you are fired. So I abandoned the project ».

She is one of the few actors who has acted naked.
“Let me clarify this point, the actors are not strippers, we tell a story to the best of our ability and conscience. If the nude is justified, it fits. ”

“Youth” by Sorrentino?
«The melancholy of age and the regret of youth. I’m grateful I got it, and my friends in Brooklyn. I am not grateful for the death that sooner or later I will approach ».

Have you recently made a film for Davide Ferrario?
“I am the English governor of Malta who actually lived, Hunter Blair, when the island was under the British protectorate. An indecisive type, he does not know how to get out of the independence movement. “Blood on the Crown” recounts the uprisings in Malta on 7 June 1919, the day they celebrate freedom from the English ».

July 20, 2021 (change July 20, 2021 | 07:59)

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