Gangs of New York
The Dream Page


  • A brand new trailer for Gangs of New York was featured at the Tribeca Filmfest in New York City May 10, 2002

  • The very first Trailer for Gangs of New York
    Thanks to Kratilla's Cameron Diaz website

    «It's quite a doozy, with swelling operatic chants, lots of knives and big hats, and not a single building taller than four stories in sight (Scorsese is wisely avoiding typical NY concepts, I think). The "Five Points" that Daniel Day-Lewis mentions don't include any areas I've heard of, but I'm no New Yorker. DiCaprio is beefily authentic, Day-Lewis' mustache has that creepy villain thing going on, and Diaz has the thickest Irish brogue in the trailer (or maybe it's just unintelligible). Really great trailers give you goosebumps, and I got 'em.»

  • DVD Quality
    *registration required to access*

  • Windows Media

  • Production Clip
    *thanks to Arnzilla for finding it!

Leonardo DiCaprio in Gangs of New York
"America was born in the streets"

Cast List:

Leonardo DiCaprio - Amsterdam Vallon
Daniel Day-Lewis - Bill the Butcher
Cameron Diaz - Jenny
Liam Neeson - Priest Vallon
Jim Broadbent - Boss Tweed
Brendon Gleeson - The Monk
John C. Reilly - Happy Jack Mulraney
Henry Thomas - Johnny Sirocco
Andrew Gallagher - "little" Johnny Sirocco
Gary Lewis - Charles McGloin Roger Ashton-Griffiths - P.T. Barnum
Devon Murray - "little" Amsterdam
Barbara Bouchet - Hell-Cat Maggie

EXP: Harvey Weinstein, Michael Hausman, Maurizio Grimaldi
PROD: Alberto Grimaldi
DIR: Martin Scorsese
AD: Joseph Reidy
2DIR: Peter Markham
Screenplay: Jay Cocks, Steven Zaillian
Score: Elmer Bernstein
Camera: Michael Balhaus
Editor: Thelma Schoonmaker PD: Dante Ferretti
ART: Bob Guerra
SET: Francesca LoSchiano
COS: Sandy Powell
SND: Ivan Sharrock
UPM: Riccardo Neri
CASTING: Ellen Lewis
P: Larry Kaplan
DISTRIB: Miramax Films: FOREIGN: Ent. Group

Leonardo DiCaprio

He is the son of the Dead Rabbits' leader,
who is on a mission for revenge
against the man who killed his father.

Bill the Butcher
Daniel Day Lewis

The leader of the Native Americans
and the one man that Amsterdam
has sworn to get even with.

Cameron Diaz

The beautiful woman in Amsterdam's life who may just change his mind, or die trying!

Here is a little background behind the story of Gangs of New York...

"Early Gangs of the Bowery and Five Points"

The original Five Points gangs had their genesis in the tenements, saloons, and dance halls of the Paradise Square district in New York City, but their actual organization into working units, and the consequent transformation of the area into an Alsatia of vice and crime, closely followed the opening of the cheap green-grocery speak-easies which soon sprang up around the Square and along the streets which debouched into it. The first of these speak-easies was established about 1825 by Rosanna Peers in Center Street just south of Anthony, now Worth Street. Piles of decaying vegetables were displayed on racks outside the store, but Rosanna provided a back room in which she sold the fiery liquor of the period at lower prices than it could be obtained in the recognized saloons. This room soon became the haunt of thugs, pick-pockets, murderers, and thieves. The gang known as the Forty Thieves, which appears to have been the first in New York with a definite, acknowledged leadership, is said to have been formed in Rosanna Peers' grocery store, and her back room was used as its meeting-place, and as head-quarters by Edward Coleman and other eminent chieftains. There they received the reports of their henchmen, and from its dimly lit corners dispatched the gangsters on their war-like missions. The Kerryonians, composed of natives of County Kerry, Ireland, was also a product of Rosanna's enterprise. This was a small gang which seldom roamed beyond Center Street and did little fighting; its members devoted themselves almost exclusively to hating the English.

The Chichesters, Roach Guards, Plug Uglies, Shirt Tails, and Dead Rabbits were organized and had their rendevous in other grocery stores, and in time, these emporiums came to be regarded as the worst dens of the Five Points, and the centers of its infamy and crime. The Shirt Tails were so called because they wore their shirts on the outside of their trousers, like Chinamen, and the expressive appellation of the Plug Uglies came from their enormous plug hats, which they stuffed with wool and leather and drew down over their ears to serve as helmets when they went into battle. The Plug Uglies were for the most part gigantic Irishmen, and included in their membership some of the toughest characters of the Five Points. Even the most ferocious of the Paradise Square eye-gougers and mayhem artists cringed when a giant Plug Ugly walked abroad looking for trouble, with a huge bludgeon in one hand, a brickbat in the other, a pistol peeping from his pocket and his tall hat jammed down over his ears and all but obscuring his fierce eyes. He was adept at rough and tumble fighting, and wore heavy boots studded with great hobnails with which he stamped his prostrate and helpless victim.

The Dead Rabbits were originally part of the Roach Guards, organized to honor the name of a Five Points liquor seller. But internal dissension developed, and at one of the gang's stormy meetings someone threw a dead rabbit into the center of the room. One of the squabbling factions accepted it as an omen and its members withdrew, forming an independent gang and calling themselves the Dead Rabbits (in the slang of the period a rabbit was a rowdy, and a dead rabbit was a very rowdy, athletic fellow.) Sometimes they were also known as the Black Birds, and achieved great renown for their prowess as thieves and thugs. The Battle uniform of the Roach Guards was a blue stripe on their pantaloons, while the Dead Rabbits adopted a red stripe, and at the head of their sluggers carried a dead rabbit empaled on a pike. The Rabbits and the Guards swore undying emnity and constantly fought each other at the Points, but in the rows with the water-front and Bowery gangs they made common cause against the enemy, as did the Plug Uglies, Shirt Tails, and Chicesters. All of the Five Point gangsters commonly fought in their undershirts.

What is the Five Points?
(From the Five Points link on this site)...

Named for the points created by the intersection of Park, Worth, and Baxter streets, the neighborhood was known as a center of vice and debauchery throughout the nineteenth century. Outsiders found Five Points threatening and fodder for lurid prose. Describing a visit in 1842, Charles Dickens wrote: "This is the place: these narrow ways diverging to the right and left, and reeking every where with dirt and filth. Such lives as are led here, bear the same fruit here as elsewhere. The coarse and bloated faces at the doors have counterparts at home and all the wide world over. Debauchery has made the very houses prematurely old. See how the rotten beams are tumbling down, and how the patched and broken windows seem to scowl dimly, like eyes that have been hurt in drunken frays. Many of these pigs live here. Do they ever wonder why their masters walk upright in lieu of going on all-fours? and why they talk instead of grunting?"

Excerpt from an interview with Martin Scorsese on the occasion of « Bringing Out the Dead » release in France

Jean-Paul Chaillet : What’s the theme of your next movie, Gangs of New York?

Martin Scorsese : I’ve been trying to make this film for about 25 years. The screenplay has evolved a lot of course, but the plot remains the same. It’s about the birth of Manhattan and the way the different waves of immigrants have shaped NY evolution. This, showed through the influence of gangs in the second half of the 19th century, with for example, the arrival of irish immigrants – catholic, poor and illiterate – and their rivalry towards the protestants, alreday set up in NY. And behind all that, you add, political and religious corruption, violence and fight for the power. As everybody knows, power corrupts and nobody can be an exception to the rule. I’ve been fascinated by that theme since « Casino » and « Goodfellas ». The shooting will begin in may, with Leonardo DiCaprio in the role of young man adopted by a protestant leader of Catholic origin.

Irish Gangs

Irish immigrants formed the first American criminal gangs in New York City. Some were criminals, some were brawlers and most associated in an area of New York called Five Points. They had dress codes and called their members by code nicknames. (Many of the gang rituals of today have their roots in this period.) The first Irish gang to have a recognized leader was the Forty Thieves, organized by Edward Coleman in 1826. Gangs also arose in the Bowery. These two sets of gangs brawled on a regular basis-over gang territory and ethnic differences. Sometimes the battles were so long and intense that the army had to be called in to stop them.

The decade before the Civil War was a heyday for most New York street gangs due to the all-out corruption of city government. Gang membership swelled. Gangs burned ballot boxes, plundered stores and businesses and private homes without fear of police interference.