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Fans hoping for a Martin Scorsese / Robert De Niro reunion may have to wait a little longer: The 'Departed' director has opted not to make 'The Comedian,' starring De Niro. Stepping into the director's chair just might be De Niro's pal Sean Penn.
With Penn -- director of the downbeat indies 'The Pledge' and 'The Crossing Guard' -- on board, we can expect a fairly dark take on this film, billed as the story of an "aging, bitterly funny stand-up comic."
The script is by Art Linson (producer of 'Heat,' and Penn's last directorial effort, 'Into the Wild') and comedian Jeffrey Ross, who is making his first foray into writing for the movies.
Production is scheduled to begin next year in New York.
Scorsese recently announced that 'The Irishman,' about mobster Frank Sheeran, that was also to star De Niro would be his next project. He's now said to be making the Jesuit priest movie 'Silence' instead. De Niro (who played the most badass Jesuit ever in 1986's 'The Mission') is apparently not involved in that project.
De Niro and Penn co-starred in the 1989 comedy 'We're No Angels,' and De Niro gave Penn a good-natured roast before presenting him with his 2009 Best Actor Oscar for 'Milk.'
Are you disappointed De Niro and Scorsese won't be working together on 'The Comedian?