1. From Waiter to Actor
Before Joe Pesci became an Academy Award-winning actor, he had a variety of jobs. He worked as a waiter, a nightclub singer, and a guitar player. He honed his craft in the clubs of New Jersey, where he was born and raised, and eventually made his way to Hollywood. His hard work and dedication paid off, and he went on to become one of the most beloved and respected actors of his generation.
2. Joe Pesci, the Actor with an Interesting Last Name
Joe Pesci, the Academy Award-winning actor, has an interesting last name. In Italian, Pesci translates to "fish". This is fitting, as Pesci has starred in a number of films with aquatic themes, such as the classic mobster movie Goodfellas, in which he played a character named Tommy DeVito, and the comedy Home Alone, in which he played a burglar named Harry Lime.
3. Joe Pesci's Failed Album Released Under Pseudonym
In the 1960s, Joe Pesci, the Academy Award-winning actor, tried his hand at music and released an album under the pseudonym Joe Ritchie. Titled "Little Joe Sure Can Sing", the album was a collection of classic pop and rock songs, but unfortunately it failed to gain the traction he had hoped for. Despite the lack of success, the album remains a fascinating footnote in the career of one of Hollywood's most iconic stars.
4. Joe Pesci and George Carlin were great friends
Joe Pesci and George Carlin were great friends, so much so that Carlin even gave a shout-out to Pesci in one of his comedy bits. The two had a close bond that lasted until Carlin's death in 2008. They had known each other for many years, and Carlin often praised Pesci's comedic talent. In fact, Carlin even said that Pesci was one of the funniest people he had ever met.
5. Joe Pesci Wins Academy Award for 'Goodfellas'
Joe Pesci won an Academy Award for his performance in the 1990 classic crime drama "Goodfellas". His portrayal of the volatile mobster Tommy DeVito earned him critical acclaim and the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. His performance in the film is widely considered to be one of the greatest of his career, and it cemented his status as one of the most talented actors of his generation.
6. Joe Pesci Turned Down Role in Judge Dredd
Joe Pesci was offered the role of "Fergie" in the 1995 film "Judge Dredd", but he declined the part. The role was eventually taken on by Rob Schneider, who went on to star in the movie alongside Sylvester Stallone. Joe Pesci is known for his roles in films such as "Goodfellas" and "Home Alone", and has won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in "Goodfellas".
7. Joe Pesci Broke Rib on 'Raging Bull' Set; Kept in Movie
Joe Pesci's rib was broken on the set of the iconic film "Raging Bull" when Robert De Niro accidentally hit him during a sparring scene. Despite the injury, the director chose to keep the scene in the movie due to the realism of Pesci's reaction to the pain. This moment has become one of the most memorable scenes in the film, and has been praised for its authenticity.
8. Joe Pesci Almost Star of 'Throw Momma From The Train'
Joe Pesci was almost the star of the 1987 comedy "Throw Momma From The Train". The role eventually went to Danny DeVito, but Pesci was the first choice for the lead role. The movie was a huge success, grossing over $60 million at the box office and earning DeVito a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor. It's hard to imagine anyone else in the role, but it could have been Pesci.
9. Joe Pesci Returns to the Screen and Is Praised by Critics
After an 8-year hiatus from acting, Joe Pesci made his return to the big screen in 2006 with his role in the film “The Good Shepherd”. During his self-imposed retirement, Pesci had taken a break from the spotlight, but his return to the industry was met with much anticipation and excitement from fans. His performance in the film was praised by critics, and it marked the beginning of a new era in his career.
10. Successful Actor Despite Small Stature
Joe Pesci is a shining example of how success can be achieved regardless of physical stature. Standing at a mere 5' 4", the Academy Award-winning actor has made a name for himself in Hollywood, appearing in some of the most iconic films of the past few decades, including Goodfellas, Casino, and Home Alone. His impressive body of work has earned him numerous accolades, including an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Goodfellas. Despite his small stature, Joe Pesci has proven that talent and hard work can overcome any obstacle.
More facts on
- Male actors from Newark, New Jersey
- BAFTA Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles winners
- Columbia Records artists
- American people of Italian descent
- Best Supporting Actor Academy Award winners