FULL NAME: Alfred James Pacino. BORN: 25 April 1940. PLACE: South Bronx. New York City.
TRAINING: High School of Performing Arts (dropped out) and Actors‘ Studio with Lee Strasberg.
LOVE INTEREST: Jill Clayburgh.Tuesday Weld, Marthe Keller. Marty Bregman, Maureen Springer. Kathleen Quinlan, Diane Keaton. Penelope Ann Miller. Lyndall Hobbs. No marriages.
TOP TEN MOVIES: Panic In Needle Park (1971), The Godfather ( I972). Serpic'o (I973). The Godfather Part 11(1974). Dog Day Afternoon (I975). . . . And Justice For All (1979), Sea 0fl.ove (I989). Glengarry Glen Ross ( I992). Scent OfA Woman (I992);Car1it0 '5 Way (1994). FORTHCOMING MOVIES: Two Bits aka A Day To Remember” (director James Foley. co- starring Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio), City Hall (director Harold Becker, co-starn'ng John Cusack and Bridget Fonda). Donny Brasco (director Mike Newell, co-starring Johnny Depp).
O The List 26 Jan-8 Feb 1996
They’re the two most respected actors of their generation: Robert De Niro and Al Pacino. Now. for the first time. they’re on screen together playing cops and robbers in A-grade thriller Heat. Alan Morrison weighs up their appeal, with help from director Michael Mann.
‘llon' ya doing." What d '_\‘a say I buy you a ('ll/) (gl't'ttllt’t’f" ‘Yeah, sto'e. Let's go. '
dialogue ever spoken in the movies.
the most memorable exchanges in the medium’s IOU-year history. The
on the freeway; next. they‘ll go to a cafe and set out the ground-rules for their cat-and-mouse game.
It‘s a reasonable thriller scenario. but once you realise the good guy is played by Al Pacino and the bad guy Robert De Niro. the stakes are raised higher than a triple lottery rollover.
Both in their fifties. both with a string of box office successes and critical awards behind them. And yet. in a Hollywood world where star packages are often more important than good scripts. De Niro and Pacino had never shared screen time together ttntil writer—director Michael Mann cast them as adversaries in l/eat — Tlte Godfather l’art ll doesn’t count as each appeared in a distinct time frame. with De Niro playing a young version of Pacino‘s lather. It's not that inflated egos and professional jealousies had kept them apart — the pair have been friends for decades and were close to collaborating on (Ilettgartjv Glen Ross — it‘sjust that the film industry could never come up with the right material.
In the past. Hollywood deliberately set out to bring its biggest stars together — from James Stewart and Cary Grant in The Philadelphia Story to Robert Redford and Paul Newman in Butch Cassidy And The .S'tmdanee Kid. 'I‘oday. casting Cruise and Gibson or Schwarzenegger and Costner in the same movie could cost around $35 million before shooting even started: buddy pairings tend to be star male/star female (because she‘ll cost a good few million less) or A-Iist male and B-list (probably younger) male. So when a duo with the weight of De Niro and Pacino get together. it‘s something of a cinematic event — especially since these two aren‘t just stars. they're actors who can whip up on-screen fireworks from the most mundane material. Their combination in Heat should be explosive.
ardly the most scintillating piece of
but it‘s likely to go down as one of
cop has just flagged down the thief
‘(liven that a film crew is a lilm crew. one would not expect there to be much of a reaction. just another day’s work.’ says Mann of the moment the two men first came on set together. ‘but everybody looked forward to that scene. What I did. and it’s difficult to do in cinema. was I shot both sides simultaneously because the whole scene is carried in the faces and body language ofthese guys. Bob would throw a look to the side suddenly. like he’s evading Al. but then he comes back. also suddenly. with a bit of aggression. And Al. who’s been backing up. comes forward. It’s like two spectacular musicians playing a duct. and there’s all this counterpoint.’
In the movie — close to three hours in length. but packed with detail. drama and action — Pacino plays Vincent Hanna. thrice married robbery/homicide detective. obsessed with his work and lax in his domestic life. In Neil
‘Al’s style of acting is really the Al Pacino School of Acting — it’s got one student and one teacher, and that’s Al.’
McCauley (De Niro). he finds a worthy opponent with equal strategic skills and sense of honour. The cop and the thief are clear about their individual. contradictory roles in this relationship. but both have professional — and. to an extent. personal — respect for each other. In a way. you’d expect the same of the actors: that professional rivalry and personal pride would encourage their very best work when put on screen as sparring partners. Mann agrees that these parts could only be played by these actors.
‘For me. Vincent Hanna was always Al Pacino. Hanna‘s got a broad spectrum of tactics available to him for how he deals with informants. for example — he‘s extroverted. he’s in command. f an informant doesn‘t want to give you all the information. Hanna’s going to go in there and slam this guy as fast as he can with a blinding array of intimacy. sympathy. threats. intimidation. even a song -- that’s very much Al Pacino.
‘Neil McCauley. on the other hand. is somebody who’s removed from society. He’s figured out for himself what his life is going to be like. and he’s emerged with a very doctrinaire. narrow formula. Very intense. very