Martin “Marty” Scorsese is rightly heralded by many critics, peers, and moviegoers as America’s greatest living director. No one can argue with that designation for a man whose filmography includes Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, After Hours, The Age of Innocence, The Gangs of New York, The Departed, Hugo, Silence, and many, many more classics. And the 80-year-old director shows no signs of slowing down, with his latest movie, Killers of the Flower Moon, already reaping some of the best notices of his already impressive career.
With his Academy Award for Best Director, a Grammy for the excellent Bob Dylan documentary No Direction Home, and several Emmys already to his credit, Scorsese can add one more laurel to his awards mantle: TikTok star. Yep, that’s right, the director of Goodfellas is now a breakout star on the social media platform thanks to his daughter, Francesca, who is herself a filmmaker, actress, and a prominent influencer. It’s Francesca who brought Marty onto TikTok via several comedic Q&As, skits, and interviews that played on the generational and gender gaps between father and daughter. Here are a few TikToks that track the rise of Martin Scorsese as one of the platform’s most unlikely stars.
The first notable instance when Scorsese pops up on Francesca’s TikTok is on March 26, 2021, when his daughter shows him a series of pictures of feminine items and asks him to guess what they are:
The video is a straightforward back-and-forth between the two and is gently mocking of the elder filmmaker’s lack of knowledge about such things as scrunchies, bobby pins, and nipple pasties. (To be fair to Marty, I fared worse than he did when trying to identify such items as a beauty blender.) The two-part post garnered nearly 400,000 views, an impressive start for a TikTok novice.
The second notable time the Cape Fear director appears on Francesca’s TikTok is later in 2021 in a short video that plays on Scorsese’s “tough guy” image, which he gained from helming such mob movies as Goodfellas and Casino:
In a brief unedited video, Francesca films herself with the caption “I can maybe forgive you …” and then turns the camera over to her disapproving father, who mugs somewhat menacingly as the caption now reads “But, I already told my dad.” This nine-second post received 2.6 million views, an early indication of Marty’s rising TikTok stardom.
After several heartwarming videos spotlighting the close bonds the director has with his family, the next notable instance Marty appears on TikTok is in November 2022, when he takes part in a trend involving Francesca trying to convince him she has a flea in her hand:
This nearly two-minute clip was another hit with over 2 million views.
Fast forward nearly a year and Marty has his next hit in early October 2023, when he takes part in another Q&A with his daughter. This time, she quizzes him on his knowledge of modern slang words that are popular with Gen-Z youths:
Surprisingly, he gets most of them right. And when misses on “slept on,” he immediately uses it to describe the reception to one of his movies. “People hated The King of Comedy when it came out,” he muses. He doesn’t understand what the hell a “sneaky link” is, and frankly, neither do I, but Francesca helps us both out by saying it’s another word for “booty call,” which we both immediately understand. This TikTok has already received 2 million views, and is sure to garner more in the future.
Scorsese’s most recent TikTok, which was uploaded just a day ago and has already attracted over 300,000 views, is the rare time Marty uses his own voice and the only time I can think of when Francesca doesn’t appear at all. In what amounts to a 90-second skit, Scorsese is filmed in front of the camera confessing he needs a new muse. He’s tired of Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio, and he wants a new face to grace his movies:
That person he’s interviewing is revealed to be not a person at all; it’s his pet dog, Oscar. He then proceeds to hilariously audition the canine, who doesn’t really do anything, but appears to impress the director enough to win the coveted role in his next movie. Take that, Timothée Chalamet.