You're only as good as the actors in the scene.
As far as gangster movies go, Goodfellas is definitely on Mount Rushmore. It's one of the most influential movies ever, as well, taking voiceover narration to new heights and certifying Martin Scorsese as one of the most important directors of all time.
Ray Liotta stars as Henry Hill, a man who's trying to get his act together, narrating how he became a gangster and how it all fell apart.
In one of the most iconic shots from any movie, there's a oner where we follow Henry and his girlfriend from their car through the Copacabana, meeting all his cohorts. It's a oner for the ages.
But it turns out, it wasn't easy to get the shot they wanted. The camera work was exquisite, but the acting wasn't there.
Liotta was on the Rich Eisen show talking about his career when he revealed another actor's flubbed line ruined the shot. Check out this insight below:
“There’s like 100 extras, we’re going through the kitchen, we’ve got a guy picking up the table, and all of a sudden, we’re in the center of this thing. She says, ‘What do you do?’ and I say, ‘I’m in construction.’ And then it goes up to Henny Youngman. And after all that, he forgot his lines. He forgot his own jokes. So we had to do it again because the whole thing was one shot.”
Aside from the oner, they also talked about the classic “How am I funny?” scene with Pesci. There's an excellent anecdote about how Pesci based that on a real-life event where someone took what he was saying wrong and got angry. That authenticity is what makes these movies so good.
What were your favorite parts of the Liotta interview? Let us know in the comments.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article called Henry Hill a "Made Man." He was not.