Here you have a Hall of Fame comedy duo here in David Letterman. One of I believe the top five or so best late night talk show hosts of all-time and a hell of a standup comedian as well. And Joe Pesci, whose one of the best improvisational actors of all-time. Who can make serious characters look like comedians and make the funniest people you’ll ever see seem even funnier. Because again like Al Pacino and Robert De Niro to use as examples, he’s not only a great improvisational actor, but he has a great sense of humor as well. A great comedian who perhaps has never done standup comedy in his entire career other than giving awards speeches.
Dave and Joe, are talking about Goodfellas here. Which is one of my top 2 Italian Mafia movies of all-time. I go back and forth between Goodfellas and Casino. Donnie Brasco, is also one of my favorites. But Goodfellas is a movie that is not just based on a true story and about Italian mob families in New York, but if you talk to the real-life characters that these actors played, like Henry Hill the character that Ray Liotta played they would tell you that Goodfellas is a true story. And it was like seeing themselves in real-life in that movie. Joe Pesci, played mobster Tommy DeVito and he probably has the funniest part in that movie.
Joe Pesci, like Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, Jack Nicholson, Cary Grant, Burt Reynolds, are actors/comedians that don’t need scripts. At least to be funny they can turn their character into themselves and you tell them who the character is and what they’re doing in the movie and they’ll not only play it, but add their own flavor to the role and especially add a lot of their humor to the role. They can make simple lines and scenes look hysterical. De Niro, with his facial expressions and the way he delivers lines and perhaps adds his own material. Pesci, by taking a crazy, or funnier character and making that person look like the funniest and craziest person in the world.
My Talk Show Heroes: Late Night With David Letterman- Joe Pesci in 1994