In a recent report, it was revealed that Robert De Niro will be reprising his iconic role as Travis Bickle from the film “Taxi Driver” for an Uber commercial being filmed in London. The news immediately caught the attention of Paul Schrader, the film’s screenwriter, who had some interesting comments to make.
“Ouch,” Schrader wrote in a Facebook post. “Why Bob would do this is beyond my reckoning. But I haven’t seen it. If I’m lucky I never will.” Schrader’s reaction seems to suggest that he is not particularly thrilled about De Niro’s decision to take part in the commercial, although he admits that he hasn’t seen it yet.
For those unfamiliar with “Taxi Driver,” the film was released in 1976 and directed by Martin Scorsese. It follows the story of Travis Bickle, a cab driver in a gritty and noirish version of New York City. As the film progresses, Bickle slowly descends into madness and becomes a vigilante. De Niro’s captivating performance earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor.
The Uber commercial reportedly features De Niro riffing on Bickle’s famous lines from the film. One of the most memorable scenes in “Taxi Driver” shows Bickle talking to himself in the mirror, uttering the now iconic phrase, “You talkin’ to me?” It will be interesting to see how the commercial incorporates this famous dialogue.
While Schrader may not be on board with De Niro’s decision to participate in the Uber commercial, it’s important to note that his reaction is based solely on the news report and not on actually seeing the advertisement itself. It remains to be seen how audiences will react to De Niro reprising his role as Bickle in a completely different context.
In the meantime, Schrader is busy shooting his latest film, “Oh, Canada,” which stars Richard Gere and Jacob Elordi. It seems that Schrader has plenty on his plate and perhaps his focus is better directed towards his current project rather than dwelling on De Niro’s decision.
As fans of “Taxi Driver” and De Niro, it will be exciting to see how the Uber commercial turns out. Whether Schrader’s concerns are valid or not, there’s no denying the impact that “Taxi Driver” and De Niro’s performance had on cinema history.
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