Ray Liotta and the story of the struggle with bodyguards that earned him his role in “Goodfellas”
Ray Liotta, actor. Photo external source.
The American actor Ray Liotta, who died in Santo Domingo, had his most important breakthrough moment when, under the orders of the prestigious director Martin Scorsese, he got into the skin of the charming mobster Henry Hill in ” Goodfellas, “a film in which he shared the screen with Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci.
“Being in a movie in which people are talking about her 25 years later, it’s magnificent,” he said in 2016 on the Spanish program “Late Motiv,” hosted by the Catalan Andreu Buenafuente.
He explained how he managed to be part of “Goodfellas” in that television space. He was at the Venice Festival, presenting a film, and Scorsese was also at that edition, with his movie, “The Last Temptation of Christ.”
While in the hotel’s lobby in the aforementioned Italian city, Liotta managed to see the filmmaker, with whom he said he had met a couple of months before and wanted to talk to him. Only a couple of bodyguards stopped him, and when Scorsese saw him struggle with them to talk to him, he understood that he could play the role of a tough guy, something he had not done until then. “That’s why I got that role,” Liotta added.
Candidate for the Golden Globes, for his role in “Something Wild”; at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Actor on Television – Miniseries or Movie, for “The Rat Pack” (Rob Cohen, 1990); and Emmy winner for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for “ER” in 2005.
His most important works for the big screen are, apart from the aforementioned “Goodfellas,” “Something Wild” (Jonathan Demme, 1986); “Unlawful Entry” (Jonathan Kaplan, 1992), “Cop Land” (James Mangold, 1997); and “Hannibal” (Ridley Scott, 2001) or “Identity” (James Mangold, 2003).
Born in Newark, New Jersey, on December 18, 1954, he died early this Thursday in Santo Domingo, the city where “Dangerous Waters” was filmed, the second feature film directed by the filmmaker John Barr.