10 techniques and styles of filmmaking Martin Scorsese gave up after trying once

There are so many techniques and styles of filmmaking that Martin Scorsese is known for. Gangster movies and New York sets are his hallmarks, and he pioneered rapid editing and long tracking shots. The filmmaker is known for experimenting with new concepts and trying new breakthroughs in the industry, but not all of them add up.

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They say old dogs can’t learn new tricks, but Scorsese still uses his films as an excuse to further expand his film expertise. Between using 3D, making a sequel and filming with digital cameras, Scorsese will try everything once.


ten Children’s films

Scorsese is arguably one of the greatest American filmmakers. He creates extremely realistic depictions of downward spiraling vigilantes who most often end up in prison. But it goes without saying that viewers have to be a certain age to watch them. It was only after more than 40 years of career that he made a children’s film with Hugo.

The film still features many of the Scorsese tropes, such as the big follow-up shots and fast-paced editing, but for fans of the director, it plays out jarringly in the overly sentimental narrative. However, it was more of an experience than anything else, as the director quickly returned to graphic violence and an unwavering level of swear words with the wolf of Wall Street.

9 Filming in another country to represent New York

New York-based films aren’t always shot in New York City, and they’re shot in locations designed to resemble the city. This could be due to scheduling conflicts or because it is much cheaper to shoot elsewhere. But Scorsese is so infatuated with the city that, regardless of logistics and costs, he’s adamant about filming at the actual location.

The director once strayed from this strategy, since he shot most of the New York gangs in Rome. Some Redditors don’t like New York gangs, but there is no denying the scope of the film, and that is why it was shot in Italy. It was the easiest way for Scorsese to build an entire mile of mid-19th-century New York buildings. However, whether it was because of the arduous process or because it was too far from home, it is a production move that he has not repeated since.

8 Stories from Europe

Over 10 of Scorsese’s films have been based in the Big Apple, and the town has such a presence that he’s almost a character himself. The director rarely bases films outside of town, let alone in another country.

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2011 saw the release of Hugo, which was a unique film for Scorsese in many ways, but it’s the only one he directed that was based in Europe (especially France). Scorsese has never based a film in the UK or even in Italy (which is the homeland of his ancestors) and since 2011 the filmmaker has not returned to the continent.

7 Giving yourself a role with dialogue

taxi driver martin scorsese cameo

Martin Scorsese is one of the few directors to have appeared in Entourage, and he also treated himself to cameos in his films. The cameos are either him in the background or just the sound of his voice. It can be seen in the background in Silence and this is the first client with whom Jordan Belfort speaks on the phone in the wolf of Wall Street.

But in Taxi driver, the director had more than just a cameo, since he played a client of Travis Bickle, who says his wife is cheating on him, in an intense and unnerving scene. Scorsese gives a surprisingly powerful performance and, strangely enough, he’s never given himself another role since.

6 Suites

Most of Scorsese’s filmography are adaptations of novels or biographies of famous Americans in history. However, that changed in 1986 when he directed Silver color, Following the scammer. The film follows a dynamic duo who are experts in the game of pool and go around the circuit bumping into other players. Scorsese makes the sport exciting in a way that only he can.

But he’s never done a sequel since then. Quite fascinating, Martin Scorsese almost led The Godfather II when director Francis Ford Coppola briefly turned it down, and it would have been a very different movie.

5 Shooting with digital cameras

Filming on film is of major importance to Scorsese, and he is such an advocate for cinema that he played a major role in preserving film in the 1980s and even established the Film Foundation in 1990. He is so no surprise that he quickly gave up digital cameras after using them once.

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Scorsese shot the entirety of Hugo digitally, and he had no other choice since it was 3D. But after filming the movie, Scorsese barely looked at another digital camera again. There are very small exceptions, as Scorsese must have shot a few night scenes in Silence with digital cameras. A couple of The wolf of Wall Street scenes that required a green screen were also shot digitally. But other than those scenes, most of these movies were shot on film.

4 Cast of relatively unknown actors in the lead role

There are a number of actors who have made their breakthrough in a Scorsese movie, whether it’s Margot Robbie in The wolf of Wall Street or Joe Pesci in Angry bull. But these actors were already known to a certain extent and starred alongside a movie star like De Niro or Leonardo DiCaprio.

There has never been a single time that Scorsese chose a relatively unknown actor in the lead role, like Kundun sees Tenzin Thuthob Tsarong playing the Dalia Lama. The film is a biographical epic, as it covers two decades of the life of the 14th Dalia Lama in Tibet. Tsarong’s portrayal of the actual character is fantastic, but most would agree that he’s not as recognizable as the other actors since he hasn’t starred in anything since.

3 3d

Hugo is apparently an outlier in Scorsese’s filmography for many reasons, but the most important factor is that this is the director’s only 3D film. As Hugo came out at a time when critics did not want to buy into the fact that 3D was the future of cinema, the director added prestige to the format.

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The film made every reviewer look at 3D differently. Scorsese didn’t use 3D in a way that looked like objects were coming out of the screen, but it was tastefully done to improve cinematography. However, while this is one of the best 3D movies of the 2010s, it’s also quite telling that the filmmaker hasn’t returned to 3D since. According to The cinema scene, Scorsese considered shooting Silence in 3D, but it never came to fruition.

2 Aging

Joe Pesci as Russell Bufalino in The Irishman

Although this has only recently happened in Irish, he had never tried it before and it doesn’t look like Scorsese will try to age again. The film was astronomically over budget and each scene had to be shot with nine different cameras so that they could create the aging effects. The cameras even had to be built from scratch specifically for film.

The aging technique doesn’t exactly sound like an easy process. However, given that a fan-made deepfake was better than the original, the director might go back to tech in the future, but he would wait until he got a bit more advanced before doing so.

1 Directing a film directed by a woman

Most of Scorsese’s films are accurate depictions of the Mafia, so it’s no surprise that none of his films are directed by women. However, he did make a female-led film, and it was his second film in 1972.

Bertha covered wagon follows the main character who becomes a fugitive after being involved in a murder. It’s hard to believe the film was directed by Scorsese as it hardly features any of the brands the filmmaker has become known for.

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