An excerpt from Glenn Kenny's book about the making of Martin Scorsese's Goodfellas, now available.
In contemporary Hollywood, when a young actor becomes successful, he immediately tries to convert fame into power and money, investing his time in formulaic projects that guarantee great results at the box office and, thus, his ascension in the industry. It was not always like this - and we just need to observe Al Pacino's career to confirm that: after he became a hit with The Godfather, dozens of screenplays fell onto his lap, but he still focused on challenging and complex works in which he struggled against Hollywood's attempts to turn him into a heartthrob - projects such as A Dog Day Afternoon (in which he robbed a bank to pay for the sex reassignment surgery of his boyfriend, played by Chris Sarandon) and, of course, Serpico.
Between Beverly Hills and the Valley. He came around a curve and saw a car coming straight at him - a driver trying to pass five cars. On one side of Beatty was oncoming traffic. On the other side was a 100-foot drop.