Yes, we’re scratching our heads over this one too.
Variety is reporting that production has started on “Raging Bull II,” an upcoming sequel/prequel hybrid that has nothing to do with Martin Scorsese, Robert De Niro or the original film.
Instead, relative unknown Martin Guigui is directing the movie off a script he cowrote with Rustam Branaman. William Forsythe will star as an older Jake LaMotta, while newcomer Mojean Aria will play him as a younger man. De Niro famously portrayed LaMotta in the first “Raging Bull.” The project also stars Joe Mantegna, Tom Sizemore, Penelope Ann Miller, Natasha Henstridge, Alicia Witt, Ray Wise, Harry Hamlin, Bill Bellamy and James Russo as Rocky Graziano.
Somehow this film — which we’d mark as about as unnecessary a sequel/prequel as there ever was — has stayed off our radar since its inception. Martin Scorsese doesn’t even know what “Raging Bull 2” could be about either, so we don’t feel so bad being a bit confused. Here’s the publisher’s description of the story (via /Film):
“‘Raging Bull II’ is a continuation of the Jake La Motta story. When Robert De Niro won an Academy Award playing Jake in a film made from the book, La Motta’s life brightened as he shared the limelight with De Niro. Since then he has gone through fortunes, been wealthy and flat broke, and married again in addition to his first five marriages, which ended in divorces before, the film was produced. La Motta now lives with Theresa Miller, his sixth wife. In her he believes he has finally found a marital state that will endure for the balance of his life. All of the conflicts, the fights and the terrors, which have been part and parcel of La Motta’s life, are in these pages. The book takes a sharp look at the real Raging Bull, both as the controversial ring gladiator and as the older, wiser philosophically entertaining performer he has become. In the ex-fighter’s own words, ‘this time [he] has fought not to be a champion gladiator but to become a champion human being.'”