Martin Scorsese is an acclaimed, Academy Award-winning American film director noted for his compelling depictions of the US underworld, particularly with respect to his native New York. His 1980 film Raging Bull is cited by many major film critics as the best film of the 1980s.
Scorsese says he is Catholic, and describes his faith as a major influence on his work, which - alongside frank depictions of violence - often deals with such themes as desire, guilt and redemption. However, his most controversial film was The Last Temptation of Christ, which upset many churchgoers by depicting Jesus as a flawed, self-doubting human.
Early in his career he became noted for his frequent collaborations with actor Robert De Niro, who is perhaps best known today for his roles in Scorsese's films. In addition to his famous portrayal of boxer Jake LaMotta in Raging Bull (for which he won an Oscar for Best Actor) De Niro had major roles in iconic Scorsese films such as Mean Streets (1973), Taxi Driver (1976), Goodfellas (1990), Cape Fear (1991) and Casino (1995). More recently Scorsese has developed a professional relationship with Leonardo DiCaprio, who has starred in three of his films, beginning with Gangs of New York (1999).
Despite widespread praise by critics and fans, and a string of Oscar nominations, Scorsese did not win the coveted Academy Award for Best Director until 2007 when he was honored for The Departed (2006). The Oscar win was thought long overdue by many industry followers. The Departed also won that year's Academy Award for Best Picture, the first Scorsese film to do so.