1. - Steve Railsback, Helter Skelter, 1976. Inverted compliment. You’re an asthmatic New Yorker, you have just hit the heights with Mean Streets, Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore and Taxi Driver - and the next offer to arrive comes from director Tom Gries. Hde asked Marty to play Charles Manson - there was a likeness, if only in their beards. The Manson Family threatened to kill him at the 1977 Oscarnight for refusing. A phalanx of FBI agents in tuxes and evening robes quit when nothing happened at the prescribed midnight hour. "He was a little paranoid," said Robert De Niro.
2. - Bobby DiCiccio, The Big Red One, 1980. All the new movie brats wanted back parts of maverick auteur - and ex-Corporal 39532377 - Samuel Fuller’s saga of his 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Division, in North Africa and Europe. The new company of Peter Bogdanovich, Francis Ford Coppola and William Friedkin nearly produces it in 1974, when Peter wanted to play Zab (aka Fuller!) with Scorsese as Private Vinci - but he was prepping his masterpiece, Raging Bull. Moved emotionally and psychologically by Sam's films, Scorsese studied how the ex-crime reporter and WW11 veteran made them: a mobile, involved camera implying more violence than there was.
3. - Frank Vincent, Jungle Fever, 1991. New York directors stick together. Spike Lee asked Scorsese to check the Italian family’s dialogue in Do The Right Thing and Fever. "He even asked me to play the girl's father, but I didn't have the time." Except to recommend one of his Goodfellas.