Legendary director Martin Scorsese worked with the late Frank Vincent on several of his most indispensable films, giving Vincent his first big break in 1980’s Raging Bull, and going back to the well for Goodfellas and Casino. In the wake of Vincent’s death Wednesday at the age of 80, Scorsese has shared his remembrance of the actor in a written statement to THR.
“Frank Vincent was someone I could count on,” he wrote. “He was a natural who was at ease in front of the camera—on a set or on a stage. He made it look easy in all respects. He was genuine.”
The director continued:
“We worked together on three pictures, each time with his old partner Joe Pesci, and I always marveled at his genius for improvisation. He was a hard-working actor, he understood the world we were portraying so well that he really didn’t appear to be acting at all. I will always marvel at his artistry, and consider myself lucky to have had the chance to work with him and to know him.”
Scorsese is one of many Hollywood figures to pay tribute to Vincent, who had suffered a recent heart attack and was in dire condition before dying during open-heart surgery. The actor is survived by his wife, Katherine; daughters Debra and Maria; son Anthony; grandchildren Tori and TJ; and siblings Nick, Jim and Fran.
Vincent’s family released the following statement through a publicist (via Deadline): “Frank lived life on his terms, creating a dynamic and successful path in every endeavor he chose. His generosity and spirit extended beyond his family and closest friends, as he strived to promote new talent in the performing arts.”
Now go home and get your fuckin’ shinebox.