In the illustrious list of Martin Scorsese’s finest films, Goodfellas is a film that undoubtedly swirls around the top three alongside the likes of Raging Bull and Taxi Driver each vying for ultimate supremacy. The iconic crime film was brought to life by the lead cast that includes the likes of Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, Lorraine Bracco and Ray Liotta in the lead role, though despite being the runaway star of the film, Liotta would never work with Martin Scorsese again.
Instead, Scorsese preferred the timeless talent of Robert De Niro, with the two creatives collaborating on nine films together, three since the release of Goodfellas, including Cape Fear, Casino and the grand reunion movie, The Irishman. If this wasn’t already enough, De Niro is also getting ready to feature in Scorsese’s upcoming film, Killers of the Flower Moon starring Leonardo DiCaprio.
So, what was it about Ray Liotta that Martin Scorsese never vibed with? Speaking to The Guardian in September 2021, the actor questioned the very same thing and when asked whether he’d like to work with the director again he replied, “I don’t know, you’d have to ask him. But I’d love to”. Though, whilst the other icons of the crime genre, Joe Pesci, Al Pacino and Robert De Niro were reunited for The Irishman in 2019, Liotta was a quite obvious omittance.
Further in the article, a suggestion is made that Laura Dern found out some “not cool stuff” about Ray Liotta on the set of Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story, with such word of mouth perhaps having a detrimental effect on the actor’s career. In response to the subject, Liotta was apathetic, stating, “People use whatever they need to use to find the person in the part, and if she needed that, that’s fine. But it’s all people telling stories, misinformation”.
Clearly an impressive actor, Ray Liotta has starred in the films of Martin Scorsese, Noah Baumbach, Ridley Scott and Derek Cianfrance, though his inability to truly break through Hollywood is certainly questionable. When asked about his own personality and screen presence when he’s acting, Liotta responded that it’s not really something he considers, noting: “I just commit to what’s written to me on the page and the script dictates the character”.
Ray Liotta is next due to appear in the comedy El Tonto written and directed by the It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia star Charlie Day, a film that follows a fool who becomes an accidental celebrity before losing all their fame overnight. Also featuring Kate Beckinsale, Jason Sudeikis, John Malkovich, Adrien Brody and The Sopranos star Edie Falco, the film will be a major departure from Ray Liotta’s usual choice of movies.