Jun 15, 2010

Tradecraft: De Niro Still Intent On Good Shepherd Follow-Ups

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Robert De Niro still hopes to direct two follow-ups (sequels may be the wrong word) to his 2006 Matt Damon CIA epic The Good Shepherd, despite that film's failure to set the box office alight.  The trade reports that the actor discussed these projects at a master class that was part of an Italian film festival earlier this week:
Asked about his taste for directing more films in the future, the 66-year-old De Niro said he'd likely only direct "two or three" more films in his lifetime, including one or two sequels to The Good Shepherd, an intellectual spy thriller set during the early years of the Cold War. De Niro said he envisioned a second film starting in 1961, when "The Good Shepherd" ends and spanning until the 1989 fall of the Berlin Wall. A third installment, he said, would start after the fall of the Berlin Wall and go forward to the present time.
He basically reiterates what we already knew, but it's good to hear that he's still thinking about it, and not dissuaded by the first film's underperformance. Personally, I am all for this.  The Good Shepherd was definitely flawed (in its theatrical form anyway; I'm still waiting to see the much longer cut that writer Eric Roth talked about and hoping Universal one day releases it on DVD), but still fascinating entertainment for spy buffs. Two more such films set during equally rich periods of the Agency's history would be most welcome. Fingers crossed that De Niro gets his wish!

Read my initial review of The Good Shepherd here.
Read my re-appraisal of The Good Shepherd on DVD here.


antony said...

Agreed. I thoroughly enjoyed TGS — there are so few movies that deal with the subject intelligently, even a flawed one is still worth watching. I'd be in line to watch a sequel on opening night.

Tanner said...

Absolutely! And if they continue to model the main character on Angleton, well then they're only just about to get into the most interesting period of his career.