Robert de Niro's lawyer has claimed that the seventy-seven-year-old is being "forced to work" in order to pay for his ex-wife's extravagant lifestyle...

Including her "thirst for Stella McCartney."

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And that's not all. Here's the full story...

Now, Robert De Niro gained big-screen prominence for his portrayal of typically violent and abrasive characters.

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While later in his career he became known for playing comical depictions of grumpy old men, De Niro rose to fame for playing not so likable characters.

The actor was raised in a creative household.

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De Niro is the son of 2 Greenwich Village artists, who were widely respected in the art industry.

So, it's no surprise that a teenage De Niro would seek a career in the arts.

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After appearing in a string of stage shows as a child, the star dropped out of school at age sixteen to study at the Stella Adler Conservatory of Acting. With his mother's permission, the actor-to-be took the money she had saved for college and put it toward launching his acting career.

But it very nearly didn't happen.

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At first, it seemed performance wasn't all that appealing to De Niro. After being accepted at New York's prestigious High School of Music and Art aged 10, the star reportedly felt overwhelmed and unprepared for the intense and competitive nature of the industry, and switched to a standard public school after just a few days.

De Niro wasn't too interested in academics, however.

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The star joined a pretty tame Italian street gang that dubbed him "Bobby Milk," believed to be in reference to his pale complexion.

While he still wasn't much of a troublemaker...

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His time in the gang no doubt laid down his roots for being able to skillfully portray Italian Mobsters on the big screen.

At the start of his acting career, De Niro went on to appeared in several minor films

Including the likes of The Wedding Party (1969), and The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight (1971).

But it wasn't until his performance in Bang the Drum Slowly in 1973 that he gained real mainstream success.

That same year, De Niro starred in Mean Streets, marking his first collaboration with director Martin Scorsese, with whom he would do some of his most celebrated work.

By the end of the '70s...

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He was widely considered to be one of the best actors of his time.

After seeing his work, director Francis Ford Coppola, whose movie The Godfather had bagged the lucrative Academy Award for best picture, got in touch.

Coppola offered De Niro the iconic part of Vito Corleone in The Godfather, Part II (1974) - a role that earned him a best-supporting actor Oscar and firmly cemented him as an international star.

De Niro's success streak continued as we entered the '90s.

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The star opened the decade with Goodfellas, yet another acclaimed gangster flick from Scorsese.

Even in recent years, the star has continued to feature in box office smash hits.

But as we made our way through the '00s, the actor's work took a bit of a change in tone.

We saw him move away from gangster cinema...

In 2012, we saw De Niro play the father of a mentally ill man in Silver Linings Playbook, followed by comedy The Big Wedding and The Intern in 2013, to name a few.

But eventually, we saw De Niro go back to his roots in Scorsese's The Irishman.

Set in the '50s, the movie follows truck driver Frank Sheeran who gets involved with Russell Bufalino and his Pennsylvania crime family.

The movie marked De Niro’s ninth feature-length picture directed by Scorsese. 

And it was a roaring success, even going on to earn the title of the best movie of 2019.

But, aside from De Niro's very successful and smooth acting career...

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His love life hasn't always been so plain sailing.

De Niro is currently caught up in a divorce settlement with his estranged wife, Grace Hightower.

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The pair separated after twenty years of marriage back in 2018.

A virtual divorce hearing for the couple took place last week...

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In which De Niro's lawyer made quite the revelation.

His lawyer claimed that De Niro is being "forced to work" to keep up with his estranged wife's extravagant lifestyle.

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And after the statement came out online, it's received mixed opinions...

While some feel sorry for him...


Others are feeling quite the opposite...


The divorce hearing comes as the pair continue to argue about how much money De Niro should have to pay to Hightower until the terms of their prenup come into place.

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As per Page Six, De Niro's lawyer Caroline Krauss, told a Manhattan judge during a virtual divorce hearing:

"Mr. De Niro is 77 years old, and while he loves his craft, he should not be forced to work at this prodigious pace because he has to."

"When does that stop? When does he get the opportunity to not take every project that comes along and not work six-day weeks, 12-hour days so he can keep pace with Ms. Hightower's thirst for Stella McCartney?" Krauss said.

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"He could get sick tomorrow, and the party's over."

Earlier this year, it was ruled by a judge that Hightower would receive $1 million per year in the divorce settlement.

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