Pesci hosted sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live on October 10, 1992, while doing publicity for My Cousin Vinny.During his monologue, he restored a picture of Pope John Paul II that had been torn by Sinéad O'Connor on the previous broadcast.During filming of the film's climactic scene, Pesci accidentally bit one of Culkin's fingers, giving him a scar.Two years later, Pesci reprised his role in the sequel Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. In 1992 he appeared as the title character in the comedy My Cousin Vinny with Ralph Macchio, Marisa Tomei and Fred Gwynne.The first film Pesci starred in was the 1976 low-budget crime film The Death Collector alongside Frank Vincent.
His performance in the film, a departure from his usual characters, was critically acclaimed.Pesci has starred in a number of other high-profile films, including Easy Money (1983), Once Upon a Time in America (1984), Moonwalker (1988), Lethal Weapon 2 (1989), JFK (1991), Lethal Weapon 3 (1992), A Bronx Tale (1993), and Lethal Weapon 4 (1998).He announced his retirement from acting in 1999, and since then he has appeared only occasionally in films, including a cameo appearance in the 2006 spy thriller The Good Shepherd, directed by De Niro.In 1990, he reunited with Scorsese and De Niro for Goodfellas, wherein he played mobster Tommy De Vito, based on real-life mobster Thomas De Simone.(Tommy De Vito is also the name of Pesci's old acquaintance from Belleville, New Jersey, and a member of The Four Seasons, but contrary to popular belief, the naming is coincidental.) Old friend Frank Vincent also appears in the film; Pesci's character kills Vincent's character in a rage in one of the best-remembered scenes in the film after the Vincent character contemptuously tells him to "go home and get your [shoe] shine box." Pesci received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for the role, which he accepted with one of the shortest speeches in Oscar history, saying simply, "It's my privilege. Pesci also co-starred in the blockbuster Home Alone in 1990, playing Harry Lime, one of two bumbling burglars (along with good friend Daniel Stern) who attempt to burgle the house of the young character played by Macaulay Culkin.
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At the same time, he tried to start a musical career, playing guitar with several bands.