Those bastions of responsible journalism over at TMZ have turned us on to the fact that Joe Pesci, of 8 Heads in a Duffel Bag fame, has been given the boot from Barry Levinson‘s Gotti family biopic Gotti: In the Shadow of My Father (formerly Gotti: Three Generations; maybe they cut the budget by ignoring a generation), but he’s not going quietly. Pesci is suing the producers of the film for $3 million. Here’s how it went down according to the gossip site:
In the lawsuit, Pesci claims reps from Fiore Films offered him the critical role of Angelo Ruggiero, Gotti’s close friend and enforcer. Pesci says he made a deal for $3 million.
But Pesci says after he was lured into making public statements about how happy he was to appear in the movie — which stars John Travolta as John Gotti, Jr. — the producers pulled the deal, claiming Pesci breached the deal by trying to back out.
While that is very interesting and for the courts to decide, Pesci had apparently been so sure of the arrangement that he gained 30 pounds to better represent the stocky Angelo Ruggiero. He alleges in the lawsuit that he “ended his strict and healthy diet” to gain the weight. Poor guy.
This is the first we’ve heard of Pesci’s separation from the project, which is left now with Al Pacino, every human being with the last name “Travolta,” Lindsay Lohan. What a bizarre wrap party that will be.
In the meantime, if you see a rotund gentleman crying into a giant bowl of spaghetti on the side of the road, go ask him for his autograph. It’s probably Joe Pesci.