18 Best Secrets Revealed About Robert De Niro

1. Robert De Niro is an American actor and producer who has starred in over 90 films.

2. His first major film roles were in the sports drama Bang the Drum Slowly .

3. In 1974, after being turned down for the role of Sonny Corleone in the crime film The Godfather , for which he won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

4. He also earned nominations for the psychological thrillers Taxi Driver , both directed by Scorsese.

5. He has also simultaneously directed and starred in films such as the crime drama A Bronx Tale .

6. De Niro has also received the AFI Life Achievement Award in 2003 and the Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award in 2010.

7. He was raised by his mother in the Greenwich Village and Little Italy areas of Manhattan.

8. His father lived within walking distance and De Niro spent much time with him as he grew up. De Niro attended PS 41, a public elementary school in Manhattan, through the sixth grade.

9. He then went to Elisabeth Irwin High School, the private upper school of the Little Red School House, for the seventh and eighth grades.

10. He gained popular attention with his role as a dying Major League Baseball player in Bang the Drum Slowly .

11. De Niro had a pivotal role in the Francis Ford Coppola film The Godfather Part II , playing the young Vito Corleone.

12. Coppola had remembered his previous auditions for the roles of Sonny Corleone, Michael Corleone, Carlo Rizzi, and Paulie Gatto in The Godfather.

13. His performance earned him his first Academy Award, for Best Supporting Actor, although Coppola accepted the award as De Niro was not present at the ceremony.

14. De Niro became the first actor to win an Academy Award speaking mainly a foreign language.

15. In this case, multiple Sicilian dialects, although he delivered a few lines in English.

16. He and Marlon Brando, who played the older Vito Corleone in the first film, are the only actors to have won Oscars for portraying the same fictional character.

17. The two came together onscreen for the only time in The Score .

18. After working with Scorsese in Mean Streets, De Niro went on to have a successful working relationship with him in films such as Taxi Driver .

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