Scarface will never die

The classic film is still two years away from its 30th anniversary. Yet, it seems like Scarface is a holiday that’s celebrated every day. 

As we recently reported on TG, there’s a special Scarface deluxe edition that comes in a humidor for a cool grand, and there was also a cast and crew reunion for the Blu-ray release that brought out the man himself, Al Pacino, for what he always said was his favorite role.

Now the news has hit that a screenwriter is on board for a reboot of the film, and there was also been a tribute to the film in the December issue of Playboy, written by Stephen Rebello. 

Deadline reports that the new model Scarface will be written by David Ayer, who penned the scripts for Training Day, and Harsh Times, which he also directed.


Ayer told Deadline he’s not afraid of working on such sacred ground, “This is a fantasy for me,” he said. “I can still remember when I saw the film at 13 and it blew my mind. I see it as the story of the American dream, with a character whose moral compass points in a different direction. That puts it right in my wheelhouse.” 

And apparently, this won’t be a movie karaoke version of the ’83 classic, or the ’32 classic either. 

”If it was just an attempt to remake the 1983 film, that would never work,” Ayer continued.


The Playboy story is an in depth, behind the scenes account that provides a lot of interesting details, no matter how much you think you know about the film, although funny enough, having written my own tributes to Scarface, no one has ever asked screenwriter Oliver Stone about the line, “Say hello to my little friend,” including myself. (Stone did tell me the definition of a “haza” came from a car salesman).


Reading the article, it recalls a private screening of the film that took place in New York on December 1, 1983 that included Eddie Murphy, Cher, Lucille Ball, and Dustin Hoffman. Cher loved it, and said, “It was a great example of how the American dream can go to sh*t,” which is of course the theme of many Oliver Stone stories. (How Tony Montana ultimately meets his demise also revolves around a big theme in Brian DePalma’s work, where no good deed goes unpunished).

Steven Bauer, who played Montana’s partner in crime, also related that Bono came up to him one day and told him, “You’re great, but I f*cking hate Scarface. Everything in that movie is what’s ugly about America.”


Eddie Murphy loved the film, novelists Kurt Vonnegut and John Irving were disgusted and left early, and Lucille Ball said, “We thought the performances were excellent, but we got awful sick of that word.” (To give you a hint, it starts with an F and is used a reported 226 times in the film, or once every 1.33 minutes…) When Pacino graced the after party at Sardi’s restaurant, he said looking at the shell shocked faces of those who’d just seen the film was like the reaction to the Springtime For Hitler musical number in Mel Brooks’s The Producers.


Other interesting bits of Scarface trivia you’ll read include the film’s budget and shooting schedule, $23.5 million and 24 weeks, the fact that Shaquille O’Neal threw a Scarface themed party that cost over $300,000 for his 34th birthday, and that one Harlem drug lord kept a framed picture of Tony Montana on his nightstand, but with his face pasted over Pacino’s.