It looks like Michelle Pfeiffer (Scarface) might be joining Robert De Niro (Goodfellas) in returning to their mafia roots in Luc Besson’s crime comedy, Malavita. Based on Tonino Benacquista’s novel, “Badfellas”, Malavita follows a mafia family who seeks witness protection in France. The problem is that they brought their criminal habits with them and start to deal with things in the old-fashioned way. De Niro is set to star as the head of the family, who was also head of the local crime family until he turned rat. Pfeiffer is in talks to star as his wife, who has a soft spot for using arson against those who cross her. Besson, who wrote the script and will also produce, is eyeing a production start this August. Hit the jump for more on Malavita.
Variety reports that Pfeiffer is in talks to re-team with De Niro in Malavita. The two previously starred together in Matthew Vaughn’s Stardust and Garry Marshall’s New Year’s Eve. A mafia-based comedy should be a cakewalk for De Niro, who sports the more dramatic films such as Goodfellas, The Godfather: Part II and Casino, as well as comedic turns in Analyze This and Analyze That. Pfeiffer is no stranger to the genres herself, boasting a memorable role in Scarface, but also starring in the 1988 comedy, Married to the Mob. I wonder how De Niro’s Backdraft character is going to feel about her apparent penchant for arson.
Check out the description of Benacquista’s source novel here (via Amazon):
Under cover of darkness, an American family moves into a villa in Cholong-sur-Avre in Normandy. Fred Blake, the father, tells everyone he is there to write a history of the Allied landings. His wife Maggie gets involved in a local charity; their teenage children enrol in the lycee. At first glance a family like any other. But Fred’s real name is Giovanni Manzoni – an ex-Mafia boss who has grassed and is now part of the FBI’s witness-protection program. And his record in other locations would indicate that his cover is not likely to last very long.