Stepping up before the job of Robert De Niro can be officially outsourced to Asia, Robert De Niro has signed on to star in director Luc Besson's Malavita, a film that will find De Niro stepping back into the gangster role that used to be such cause for excitement. But of course, this is modern-day De Niro, meaning that his long history of starring in such movies will once more be played for laughs: He'll play a former mafia type whose family is living under Witness Protection in Normandy—a premise that its producers describe as "Taken… with lots of humor," because that is a movie that happened within the short frame of existence our modern brains can be expected to remember, even if it sounds more accurately like a combination of Analyze This and the Steve Van Zandt series Lilyhammer, and a movie about sex slavery should never be appended "but with lots of humor." Anyway, that winking homage to De Niro's film past is even more explicit given that the film's based on a book titled Badfellas. Perhaps Besson will go all the way with that by including the scene where De Niro's character accidentally ends up attending a screening of Goodfellas, so this movie can finally openly acknowledge how much of De Niro's career of late has been about looking at that film ironically. [via The Playlist]