Robert De Niro as Bernie Madoff in Genius Casting Move

Robert De NiroGuess who's going to play Bernie Madoff in an HBO movie based on the new book about the notorious swindler's life and family, Truth and Consequences: Life Inside the Madoff Family, which Laurie Sandell wrote with the help of Madoff's wife, son, and other family members?

Robert De Niro, that's who.

I know -- talk about a perfect casting choice. De Niro, who will also serve as a producer on the project, is not only pretty much the exact right age to play the convicted Ponzi schemer (De Niro is 68; Madoff is 73), but he also really looks the part. Though a little less jowly than Madoff, the actor has a remarkably similar hairline, color, and style. (OK, Madoff's a little balder -- that's what Hollywood hair and makeup teams are for ...)

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What's more, the Raging Bull actor presumably won't have to work too hard on an accent for the man who took advantage of clients through raging bull markets and bear markets alike. Both De Niro and Madoff grew up in New York City: the actor in Manhattan; the jailed moneyman in Queens.

But most important, one imagines that the incredibly talented De Niro will bring to the role just the right blend of charisma and crazy. You could totally see him capturing the charm Madoff must have laid on in order to get scads of unsuspecting victims to entrust their nest eggs to him. You could also see him bringing the necessary sociopathic undertones to a character who presumably knew full well that the majority of those people would, thanks to him, never see their cash again.

Yeah, cover up that trademark cheek mole and throw on an expensive suit and overcoat, a pair of rimless glasses, and an eerie smile, and I think De Niro will cinch it.

Are you excited to watch Robert De Niro play Bernie Madoff?

 

Image via david_shankbone/Flickr

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