- Recent reports suggest that Robert De Niro might reprise his iconic role as Travis Bickle from Taxi Driver for an Uber ad campaign, causing a mix of excitement and disappointment among fans.
- The screenwriter of Taxi Driver, Paul Schrader, expressed his disapproval of De Niro’s potential involvement in the ad campaign, stating that he couldn’t understand De Niro’s decision.
- De Niro will soon continue his collaboration with Martin Scorsese in the upcoming film Killers of the Flower Moon.
Recent report have claimed that seminal actor Robert De Niro could be gearing up to reprise his role as Travis Bickle from 1976’s classic Taxi Driver for an Uber ad campaign. And it seems like not everyone is happy about it. After working for the first time with Martin Scorsese in Mean Streets, and after participating in Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather Part II, Robert De Niro became a true cinema legend with Taxi Driver, his second collaboration with Scorsese.
The story centers on a war veteran who recently returned from Vietnam and feels left out of society. He suffers from anxiety and post-war depression, which causes him insomnia. Since he can’t sleep, he decides to drive a taxi at night on the streets of New York, meeting different characters from the city’s nightlife. Tired of the insecurity that reigns on the streets after witnessing it firsthand as a taxi driver, Travis decides to buy a gun and take justice into his own hands.
Taxi Driver is one of the most acclaimed titles in which De Niro has worked on alongside Scorsese, and one of the best performances of his career. Therefore, when it was reported that more than 45 years after the film’s release, the actor would reprise the role for an Uber ad campaign, many fans celebrated. Though some, of course, wept at the idea of another beloved film being deprived of oxygen by the stranglehold of capitalism.
One such person who feels very much the latter is the film’s scriptwriter, who did not have a positive response to the possibility.
Paul Schrader Does Not Support De Niro Reprising His Taxi Driver Role for Uber
Reacting to one of the articles that shared the news about the campaign, originally published by The Sun, the Taxi Driver screenwriter shared his opinion on the matter:
“Ouch. Why Bob would do this is beyond my reckoning. But I haven’t seen it. If I’m lucky I never will.”
Fortunately for Schrader, Variety later shared details about Uber’s campaign starring De Niro, which will have no relation to the acclaimed film. “We are filming with Robert De Niro in London for a new Uber UK campaign, which will launch later in the year,” Uber said in a statement, with De Niro’s spokesperson Stan Rosenfield stating that the actor will not reprise the role of Travis Bickle for the ad, and he will not repeat the famous line, “You talkin’ to me?’”
What De Niro will be doing once again is working with Scorsese, with whom he has shared a long list of projects besides Taxi Driver and Mean Streets. On October 20, Killers of the Flower Moon will hit theaters, the director’s new film that brings together his two favorite actors, De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio, along with Jesse Plemons, Brendan Fraser, Lily Gladstone, Tantoo Cardinal, John Lithgow, Cara Jade Myers, JaNae Collins, Jillian Dion, William Belleau, Louis Cancelmi, Jason Isbell, Sturgill Simpson, Tatanka Means, Michael Abbott Jr., Pat Healy, Scott Shepherd, Gary Basaraba, Steve Eastin, Barry Corbin, and Katherine Willis.
The story is set in the 1920s in Oklahoma, when members of the Osage tribe begin to be mysteriously murdered after oil deposits are discovered on their land, making them extremely rich. The murders trigger an investigation by the FBI to uncover the dark truth of what is happening.