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Martin Scorsese’s ‘The Irishman’ Set for Centerpiece Screening at Rome Festival

Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman” will be among highlights of the upcoming Rome Film Festival, following its European launch as the closing film at the BFI London Film Festival.

As with the Oct. 13 London premiere, key cast members of the hotly anticipated Netflix film are expected to attend the screening in Rome, as is Scorsese. The Rome premiere, which festival director Antonio Monda described as the event’s “centerpiece,” will take place on October 21.

The Irishman” reunites Scorsese with his “Gangs of New York” screenwriter Steve Zaillian, who adapts from Charles Brandt’s novel “I Heard You Paint Houses,” about the unsolved mystery of union boss Jimmy Hoffa’s disappearance. The long-gestating film provides “a monumental journey through the hidden corridors of organized crime: its inner workings, rivalries and connections to mainstream politics,” according to promotional materials.

Besides Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, who star in the roles of Frank Sheeran and Jimmy Hoffa, respectively, other standout talents include Joe Pesci and Harvey Keitel, Ray Romano, Bobby Cannavale, Anna Paquin, and Stephen Graham

Expensive “de-aging” technology was used to take years off of De Niro and Pacino.

Scorsese’s movie, which has a budget of about $160 million, will have its world premiere as the opening film at the 57th New York Film Festival on Sept. 27.

Netflix and the Rome fest are keeping mum about theatrical distribution plans for the film in Italy, except to say that it will screen in “select theaters.”

But sources tell Variety that the Italian release plan likely calls for “The Irishman” to go out via the Cineteca di Bologna, the Bologna Film Archives, which have a close rapport with Scorsese, and also previously provided limited release for Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma,” also a Netflix film. The Cineteca di Bologna did not immediate respond to a request for confirmation.

As previously announced, this year’s other Rome Film Fest events include a Lifetime Achievement Award to Bill Murray, to be presented by Wes Anderson, and so-called Close Encounters onstage conversations with author Bret Easton Ellis; director Ron Howard, who will present his documentary on opera singer Luciano Pavarotti; director Olivier Assayas, who will talk about the Nouvelle Vague; and Bertrand Tavernier.

The 14th edition of the Rome fest will run Oct. 17-27.

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