NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 13: Martin Scorsese attends a screening of "Personality Crisis: One Night Only" during the 60th New York Film Festival at The Film Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall on October 13, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Arturo Holmes/Getty Images for FLC)
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Goncharov Explained: How The Internet 'Discovered' A 'Lost' 'Martin Scorsese' Film
From Orson Welles’ “The Other Side of the Wind” to George A. Romero’s “The Amusement Park,” previously never-before-seen movies from legendary filmmakers are being discovered and made accessible to the public. Given this context, Scorsese fans might be excited to hear about the discovery of his film “Goncharov,” but despite the hype, the film doesn’t actually exist.
“Goncharov” is supposedly a 1973 mafia film by Martin Scorsese, but it doesn’t actually exist. It came about as a joke on Tumblr that spiraled out of control when those in the know began expanding the film’s lore with ultra-convincing movie posters, Letterboxd reviews, a compilation score, and essays probing the fake film’s politics and queer theory.
The earliest recorded “Goncharov” sighting came from a now-archived Tumbler called @zootycoon, which posted the “Goncharov” origin story around August 2020. “Goncharov” remained alive as an inside joke for the past two years until last week when @beelzeebub created a movie poster for the fake film, bringing the joke into the public eye.
The film supposedly stars Robert De Niro and Al Pacino among a star-studded cast and tells the story of the titular Goncharov, a Soviet Union discotheque owner who escapes to Naples with his wife and builds a new life in the Mafia. “Goncharov” certainly sounds like a great hypothetical movie, but the collaborative origin story of the fake film might be more entertaining.