Everyone's curious about Martin Scorsese's new Netflix The Irishman, and not just because it reunites Marty, Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, Al Pacino, Harvey Keitel, and a damned fascinating epic organised crime story. Its digital de-aging technology, used to tell its story across multiple decades, has been discussed extensively by the director, and was largely responsible for the film's budget ballooning to $160 million. What will those effects look like, after all this time and money? Netflix today released a series of images, ahead of the film's October 4 NYFF premiere, depicting De Niro's character in four distinct (de-)aging scenarios. The results are interesting, and for reasons I wouldn't have predicted.
Though it's hard to tell the technical quality of the VFX without seeing moving footage, there's an intriguing effect around the most heavily de-aged De Niro I wouldn't have predicted. People's faces subtly change shape as they age, and the Robert De Niro we see in a helmet below is someone with the same facial structure as present-day Robert De Niro, but at a younger age. Robert De Niro at that age had a slightly different facial structure, even if the aging qualities of his skin were similar. The result is a little uncanny, a kind of halfway point between two Roberts De Niro, and it'll be mighty interesting to see the effect in motion.
Check out the images for yourself:
The Irishman hits select theatres on November 1st, and will be available to stream on Netflix from November 27th.