The incredible storyboards created by an 11-year-old Martin Scorsese
At the age of just 11 years old, Martin Scorsese knew he wanted to be a filmmaker. The now Academy Award-winning director has a passion for cinema like no other, his commitment to the finer details has been systematically planted deep within his inner creativity.
As we know from Scorsese’s fantastically hand-drawn storyboards for the critically acclaimed film Taxi Driver, this process of pre-planning a project has been one that the director has carried with him throughout his career. The desire to intrinsically detail the specifics of his cinematic desire has been fine-tuned he was a child who had dreams of creating The Eternal City.
In the mind of a then 11-year-old Scorsese, he wanted to create his first film which he would later describe as “a fictitious story of royalty in Ancient Rome” which he dreamed would star the likes of Marlon Brando, Richard Burton, Virginia Mayo and Alec Guinness.
Scorsese’s fascination with the historical formation of empires is a deep-seated one and, a few years ago, the filmmaker said: “I love studying ancient history and seeing how empires rise and fall,” in an interview with Film4. “They sow the seeds of their own destruction and I think that’s what fascinated me. Ultimately the story asks, is that the wave of the future for everyone?” Scorsese added.
Setting out with pencil and colouring pens, a young Marty set out the plans for his first fictitious film by drawing—in quite fascinating detail—his first storyboard:
“Storyboards express what I want to communicate,” Scorsese previously told Phaidon in reference to the exhibition ‘Between Film and Art’ which focused on storyboards which were created by filmmakers such as Scorsese, Alfred Hitchcock, Steven Spielberg and more. “They show how I would imagine a scene and how it should move to the next,” he added.
“The storyboard for me is the way to visualise the entire movie in advance. The pencil line leaves little impression on the paper, so if the storyboard is photocopied it loses something. I refer back to my original drawings in order for me to conjure up the idea I had when I saw the pencil line made.
“These storyboards are not the only means of communication for what I imagine, but they are the point where I begin.”
Below, view the full storyboard Scorsese created when he was aged 11.