AMC Bringing ‘Goodfellas’ To Television

Published 3 years ago by


Ray Liotta Robert De Niro Joe Pesci Goodfellas AMC Bringing Goodfellas To Television

The mob/mafia is a source of constant fascination with audiences, and it’s once again stepping into the spotlight, as one of the most highly-regarded films on the subject is headed to AMC. The network is looking to bring the long-gestating adaptation of Goodfellas to television, with the help of the film’s co-screenwriter Nicholas Pileggi and its producer Irwin Winkler.

The 1990 Martin Scorsese film starred frequent Scorsese collaborators Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci – as well as Ray Liotta playing Henry Hill, a member of the Lucchese crime family, and eventual FBI informant. Goodfellas spanned several decades, from the height of the Lucchese family, all the way to its ultimate downfall in the early ‘80s.

Goodfellas was critically acclaimed and would eventually win an Academy Award for Pesci, whose iconic performance as the unhinged Tommy DeVito would result in the actor being forever remembered for making the line “Tell me how I’m funny,” far more menacing than anyone could have ever imagined. Although the film was denied the larger awards that it likely deserved, it is still revered as one of the top films of the ‘90s and one of Scorsese’s best.

Due to the film’s longevity and in some part because HBO’s The Sopranos not only featured Goodfellas actors Michael Imperioli and Lorraine Bracco, but was also filled with references to the film, it never really left the public’s eye – which may explain why AMC believes the transition to television will be a successful one.

For his part, Pileggi (who also wrote the non-fiction book Wiseguy, on which the film was based) has been rumored to be involved in some sort of Goodfellas TV adaptation for well over a year. As this project nears fruition on AMC, however, it is being reported that Homicide: Life on the Street writer Jorge Zamacona will join Pileggi in order to handle scripting duties for the proposed series.

Joe Pesci Ray Liotta Goodfellas  AMC Bringing Goodfellas To Television

Meanwhile, the film’s producer, Irwin Winkler (Rocky, The Right Stuff), is also onboard along with his son David and Warner Horizon Television.  At this time, there is no word whether Scorsese  - who directed the pilot of Boardwalk Empire and serves as executive producer - will join the Goodfellas television series in any capacity – though Pileggi has suggested he might.

Also unknown is what stretch of time the series will take place during. Given that the film covers 25 years, there’s plenty to choose from. Early indications suggest that Goodfellas will focus on the Lucchese family heydays of the 1960s – a time period AMC has already cornered the market on with Mad Men. The next step, of course, will be to cast the major roles and to find actors capable of evoking not only the criminal lifestyle, but the era, as well.

If the series does in fact take place in the ‘60s, it will help to keep Pileggi’s pen sharp. The writer is also working on Ralph Lamb, a period police drama on CBS featuring the eponymous Las Vegas sheriff and his sometimes-publicized battles with organized crime.


Screen Rant will update on all things Goodfellas as more news becomes available.

Source: Deadline

TAGS: Goodfellas
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  1. my only concern about this is that with it being on AMC will it have to be toned down in terms of language and violence? not saying those two things make or break a show but goodfellas is a fairly graphic movie. without that same level of grit i’m not sure it will stand in the same light. i’m cautiously optimistic though

    • can’t you pretty much say anything except the F word? or is that FX? i think it will work.

      • They’re not suppose to say the S-word or C-word either; and many stations do not say the N-word (thank goodness).

        • Looking forward to this especialy since i wasn’t really into the saprano’s,breaking bad, or mad men.Goodfellas was the best gangsta flick ever besides scarface imo.

        • what’s the “N” word? NBC?

          • Have no clue but sound’s stupid.

    • Have you never watched Breaking Bad? The stuff they get away with on there is pretty graphic for cable TV.

      • Cable TV is the only place where you can be “graphic.” I don’t think any language is banned.

        Broadcast television is where the censorship really kicks in.

      • I might start watching that it’s not too late,but i got alot of catching up to do.

    • I wouldn’t worry about the f-word too much in this show MAINLY cause of the fact that sure it MAY have to be censored but if AMC is smart they’ll probably show the show late at night so they may not have to worry about it that much

    • I’m REALLY excited for this especially if they can pick a certain PERIOD in goodfellas to focus on it would be even more interesting. Not that goodfellas is bad but I always thought it was weird how it just picked major events for the film(I can see why but I would’ve rather had them pick one year and stay with it) If they made a show it would be neat to see them focus say on the era just after Tommy (Or shortly before) is whacked and up to around the time Henry is a nervous reck cause of all the Cocaine.

    • Exibit A, I give you Breaking Bad…It don’t get much grittery than that..

  2. I’m already watching a period piece on the mob, it’s called Boardwalk Empire.

  3. And then “Casino” You just know it’s going to happen if this is a sucess.

    • Oh s**t forgot about casino that was better than goodfellas,rather see a show based on that first,but you’re right if GF is a hit you know casino is coming next.

      • i saw a new documentary about henry hill and the wise guys,for a docu they had very good actors who played them and filmed the crimes and their jailhouse scenes very exciting and cool. there were also things that weren´t shown in goodfellas. i can´t remember,but i think it was a hbo-docu on pay-tv. here in germany it called sky-pay-tv.