I think Don Rickles said somewhere that he loved making fun of De Niro because he took everything so seriously and didn’t seem to have much of a sense of humor. I know someone said on another thread that Joe Pesci didn’t care for being ragged on by Rickles.
RIP to a legend.
When you’ve been slammed by Rickles you’ve been slammed by the best.
Rickles was a treasure
I love the Rickles story about when he first met Sinatra.
Rickles was playing the Sahara during the Rat Pack days at the Sands and this was during the time when it was Chairman of the Board Frank….the news was making waves because of Franks relationships with the Mafia heads and such so basically, in Vegas, you DIDN’T talk about the mafia when Frank was in earshot. Everyone knew this.
So Don is playing the room at the Sahara and he hears a bunch of murmurs before he goes on. The Rat Pack has entered the room and are in the back. And Rickles has never met Frank but knows by reputation about Frank.
So what does the sonofabitch do?
He comes out and literally starts in on Frank and talking about “how Vito the Chop took care of that thing for the Old Man Scarponi and not to look for Jimmy Shoes anytime soon…etc.” and just laying into Frank and his relations with the Mafia for a good 5 minutes of straight insults….literal sacred cows that no one touches even in jest.
And the audience went dead silent….Rickles said they went from laughing to halting and sorta looking nervously over their shoulder at the booth.
So Rickles pauses and then he hears one thing….Sinatra laughing his ass off.
“And when you could busts Franks balls in Vegas about his connections and get him laughing was when I knew I could get away with anything.” Said Don with a big smile on his face.
Frank adored Don as he was the one guy who was simply like the other guys who grew up around him….a friend who would rib you no matter how famous you were.
I adore Don Rickles. I always heard he was as sweet off screen as he was mean on screen. A legend who just had that old school pizazz that is undeniably cool.
Jim Bruer (I think) described DeNiro as enjoying joking only when he was the one doing it. He and Pesci played a prank on him on SNL. But he also described them as not being able to take this kind of ragging. Artie Lang tells a funny story of Rickles on the set of Dirty Work, where Lang couldn’t keep a straight face with all the shit Rickles was talking on him.
A highschool friend of mine was an NBC page on Conan’s old show. His job was to escort the guests around the building. He said Rickles was by far his favorite guest. Made fun of my friend on the elevators he said.
Can’t wait to see Jimmy Norton play Rickles in The Irishman
Don Rickles had a project developing with Chris Katan and Cloris Leachman before he passed. 2 years later it’s still on IMDB.
I remember Kevin Pollack talking about how he and De Niro did like 35 takes of a scene of them at the diner table. I think it was Kevin Smith was asking Pollack like “was it awesome to be across from De Niro and see it up close?” And Pollack said “eh, I got a little bored. He kept doing take after take, and takes 3-35 were pretty much the same, so I kinda checked out.”