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Robert De Niro
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Robert De Niro

Robert De Niro (b. August 17, 1943 in New York City) is an acclaimed American film actor who is noted for having starred in several of director Martin Scorsese's films. Praised for his commitment to his roles, De Niro gained 50 pounds (23 kg) and learned how to box for his portrayal of Jake LaMotta in Raging Bull, ground his teeth for Cape Fear, and learned to play the saxophone for New York, New York (all Scorsese films).

Although not articulate, De Niro is generally considered a skilled observer of physical tics and details, and an intense perfectionist.

De Niro made his first film appearance in 1968 in Greetings (directed by Brian De Palma). After that, he played some major and minor roles in other films not widely seen, until he gained popularity with his role in Bang the Drum Slowly (1973). He began to work with Martin Scorsese in the same year when the two collaborated on Mean Streets. Later Scorsese films in which De Niro has participated are Taxi Driver (1976), New York, New York (1977), Raging Bull (1980), The King of Comedy (1983), Goodfellas (1990), Cape Fear (1991), and Casino (1995). In these films, De Niro has primarily played charming but emotionally unstable characters who have sociopathic tendencies.

In the mid-1980s, De Niro began expanding into occasional comedic roles, and has had much success in that area as well with such films as Brazil (1985), Midnight Run (1988), Wag the Dog (1997), Analyze This (1999), and Meet the Parents (2000).

He has won two Academy Awards: as Best Actor for his role in Raging Bull; and as Best Supporting Actor for The Godfather, Part II.

Interestingly, De Niro and Marlon Brando are the only pair of actors who have won Academy Awards for portraying the same person: De Niro won for playing young Vito Corleone in The Godfather, Part II, and Brando had won previously (although he declined the award) for playing the elderly Don Vito in The Godfather.

Selected Additional Films

External links