Robert De Niro calls Donald Trump a gangster

Robert De Niro says he would never portray 'nasty little b****' Trump: 'There’s nothing redeemable about him'

‘He’s such an awful person. There’s nothing redeemable about him, and I never say that about any character’, outspoken actor tells New York Times

Joe Sommerlad@JoeSommerlad
Sunday 15 December 2019 15:02
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Hollywood star Robert De Niro has said he would never play Donald Trump in a film, calling the US president a “nasty little b****” in a forthright interview.

While conceding he was no stranger to playing “inhumane” characters and that he always tried to “look at it from their point of view”, De Niro said he felt President Trump, currently facing impeachment charges, “is a person who, to me, has no morals, no ethics, no sense of right and wrong, is a dirty player”.

Speaking to the New York Times, he said of his fellow New Yorker: “I wouldn’t want to play him. He’s such an awful person. There’s nothing redeemable about him, and I never say that about any character.”

The comments come from a man who has played delusional psychotics like Travis Bickle, Rupert Pupkin and Max Cady in Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver (1976), The King of Comedy (1983) and Cape Fear (1991) respectively – and a literal monster in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1994).

De Niro has proven himself one of the president’s most consistent and outspoken critics in 2019, calling him a “low life” and “not even a good gangster”.

He said the president has blood on his hands over August’s mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, in which the shooter, 21-year-old Patrick Crusius, posted a white nationalist manifesto on 4chan closely mirroring Trump’s rhetoric.

While De Niro may have little desire to play the president on screen, he has regularly appeared as ex-FBI special counsel Robert Mueller in sketches on NBC’s Saturday Night Live, featuring opposite Alec Baldwin as Trump, a grotesque performance known to have irritated the commander-in-chief.

Johnny Depp has also won praise for his performance as the president in Funny or Die’s spoof adaptation of Trump’s 1987 business manual The Art of the Deal in 2016.

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