'One of the things about acting is it allows you to live other people's lives without having to pay the price.'
Up front? Robert (or Bob, as friends & family know him), has always been a top favorite of mine! The list from my childhood deﬁnatly contains a variety of ﬁlms with Robert. 'Midnight Run' (a classic & must have in any great ﬁlm collection!!). 'Goodfellas', 'Cape Fear', 'Meet the Parents/Fockers'... the list goes on & on! So.. Without further ado...
'Who-in-the-hell, do you think you are? Roberto DeNiro, boy?' (in reference to my 7 year old self, carousing around in my souped–up Ferrari, decked out and made completes by my state-of-the art Frisbee steering wheel on that sucker! YES! I speak ofeth my imaginary car!!... I still have the Frisbee haha!! Yeeeauh! & 'DeNiro represents our culture great out there!' Two phrases I heard my grandfather speak quite often. My grandfather was an Italian immigrant who came with the family to America at age 7, from Calabria, Italy. No doubt - DeNiro was my grandfathers favorite actor!! DeNiro, and Chuckles Norris (he NEVER missed Walker, Texas Ranger - not ONE episode!). So I was introed to DeNiro early on in my life. I guess you could say that my grandfather gave me DeNiro - and my Uncle John gave me Sir Charles Chaplin.. So I had a VERY dats-a-nice start in life! Up front? DeNiro has ALWAYS been a favorite of mine! Some SWEET childhood memories of mine involve this fella! 'We're No Angels' (with Sean Penn), 'Cape Fear', 'GoodFellas', & 'MIDNIGHT RUN!' Just a FEW favorite memories from childhood!! The films with DeNiro, & myself imitating him in school... Hoping no one would catch on!! He's not your everyday actor. One of the things I've always loved about him is his unique style in film. Whether terrifying the shat outta us in Cape Fear - or making us laugh uncontrollably through Midnight Run, or any of the Focker films... He (DeNiro), has ALWAYS had a style all his own. Aand with that - here is HISstory...
He was born Robert DeNiro, Jr. - on August 17, 1943.. in Manhattan, New York... He is a LIFELONG New Yorker - opting NOT to have a home in California. DeNiro, came into his own in the Greenwich Village area of Manhattan. His parents divorced when he was 3. As his Italian heritage goes.. he says... 'I am part Italian, I'm not all Italian. I'm part Dutch, I'm part French, I'm part German, I'm part Irish. But my name is Italian and I probably identify more with my Italian side than with my other parts'.. Thurr you GO! Clarification, if'n ya needed it! Like my dad - who STILL refuses to believe Marlon Brando is NOT even a LITTLE Italian! Anyyyhooo - DeNiro was raised up in the 'Little Italy' section of Greenwich Village and still stays in touch with friends from his childhood there. (It's an Italian thing, so do I) Though his parents were divorced - his mom had custody... But his dad lived close-by so young Robert spent ALOTTA time with his dad growing up.
He went to elementary school here... While there - fate would give him a taste of what was to come thru a school production play of 'Wizard of Oz' when he was 10. Young Robert played the Cowardly Lion... (FoSho'nuff - what I would GIVE to see that!) In the play, he found, made fellow children look at him different, in a positive way... As well as relaxing his shyness factor. Needless to say - he jumped into every play production he could in school from then on. FULL force! In Little Italy - growing up in this building - Robert's nickname became 'Bobby milk'... Due to his particularly 'pale or light' skin - figuratively compared to his Italian dark skinned kids.
High school was had here, By age 16 - his mind was NOT on school any longer - twas fixated on film. DeNiro was a loyal patron of the local cinema. He began to have a HUGE passion to BE in film... So - he dropped out of school to study & persue acting. He entered 'Stella's' classroom (same as Marlon Brando.) His big screen debut came in 1969, with the release of 'The Wedding Party.' Though shot in 1963 - it wasn't released until 1969 due to financial constraints. From there - he SOARED to LEGENDARY!!
DeNiro's residence has always been in New York (despite what the Hollywood tours say lol.) He has never, ever owned any ground in California. He owns 2 residences in Manhattan - one to the east, and one to the west... The house DeNiro himself lives in is located in Gardiner, New York - on a lush, plush, 78-acres. Here is the entrance gates to his Gardiner, NY home. It was tempting to stroll on up - alas - I never go upon any celebs lawn. So the gates, and a zoom will have to do I guess.. See his mailbox?? Thru the majesty of Google Earth- here's an aerial of the place.
TRIVIA: Grew up mere blocks from legendary director Martin Scorsese - though they never physically met until shooting for 'Deer Hunter.' DeNiro has also been in 2 other Scorsese films - Goodfellas & Casino. Once they met they had remembered seeing each other growing in Little Italy.. That? No doubt - put Robert on Scorsese's PERMANANT radar for his films... Another dude that has attained that?? Leo DiCaprio! (DeNiro commenting on Taxi Driver (1976)'s infamous line) You have no idea that, years later, people in cars will recognize you on the street and shout, "You talkin' to me?" I don't remember the original script, but I don't think the line was in it. We improvised. For some reason it touched a nerve. That happens.