Acclaimed Academy Award winning actor, Robert De Niro, is coming to Boston, and bringing his newest project with him–but it looks like he’s not exactly being welcomed with open arms.
The project, a crime-thriller television series called “The 4th Reich,” will air on Showtime and will follow the story of “a dogmatic faction of the neo-Nazi movement” in South Boston. The show will be executive-produced by De Niro and Jane Rosenthal, co-founders of Tribeca Productions and producers of Hollywood films like The Good Shepherd and Meet the Parents. The intense subject matter set in one of Beantown’s most oft characterized (and even lampooned) neighborhoods has already ruffled many feathers.
The project already is drawing strong criticism from local politicians. Earlier this week, the Boston Herald quoted Senator Jack Hart, who represents the South Boston neighborhood, expressed his extreme disapproval with the production, saying, “I am offended on behalf of all the good residents of South Boston that this project in any way will be filmed and thereby reflect poorly on the town. Enough!”
State Representative Nick Collins went a step further to say “If this is all De Niro has in the tank, he should just retire.”
Tribeca Productions has partnered with the organization, Against Violent Extremism, which brings together former violent extremists and victims of extremism to provide youth educational opportunities in hopes of preventing young people from becoming involved in groups that promote extremist notions, which has reassured some that the project will actually serve a higher purpose.
No word yet on when the project will officially kick-off.
What do you think of De Niro’s new project? Will it be a boon to Southie, or a bane?