Robert De Niro and Shia LaBeouf are two of the fall’s most interesting stories. De Niro stars in DC’s Joker and Netflix’s The Irishman, and on the latter front, everyone is hoping the two-time Oscar winner will conjure some of his old magic. Meanwhile, LaBeouf continues to make a case for himself as one of the most talented actors of his generation, and he has the semi-autobiographical Honey Boy arriving on the heels of his soulful turn in The Peanut Butter Falcon. These two actors could, conceivably, find themselves on the awards campaign trail this year, and now they’re attached to star together in the redemption drama After Exile.
Joshua Michael Stern (Jobs) is directing from a script by Anthony Thorne and Michael Tovo, the latter of whom based the story on true events from his own life. Thorne is producing with Steve Snyder of Pacific Shore Films, which is also financing the indie movie. Les Cohen will serve as executive producer on the project, which is slated to start production in October in Philadelphia.
LaBeouf will play Mike Delaney, sent to prison for killing an innocent man after a violent robbery. Upon his release, he must re-enter his old life to help his alcoholic, guilt-ridden, fellow ex-con father (De Niro) attempt to save his younger brother from a life of crime and drugs. The film is billed as a father-son drama about forgiveness and redemption. To be honest, I’ve always seen a little of De Niro in LaBeouf, so I can definitely buy them as father and son.
De Niro will soon be seen as a TV personality in Joker opposite Joaquin Phoenix, and he reunites with old friends Martin Scorsese, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci and Harvey Keitel on The Irishman, which he also co-produced. The Netflix movie will appropriately make its world premiere at the New York Film Festival.
Stern previously wrote and directed the Kevin Costner movie Swing Vote, as well as Jobs, which starred Ashton Kutcher as Apple genius Steve Jobs. He also created the Epix series Graves starring Nick Nolte. Stern is represented by MGMT, while CAA reps both De Niro and LaBeouf. Deadline broke the news.