Robert De Niro admits he briefly fell out with his A Bronx Tale co-star Chazz Palminteri after clashing over who should direct the Broadway adaptation of the mafia play.

A Bronx Tale is a 1993 American crime drama film set in the Bronx during the turbulent era of the 1960s. It was the directorial debut of Robert De Niro that follows a young Italian-American teenager in The Bronx, New York as his path in life is guided by two father figures, played by De Niro as his biological father and Chazz Palminteri as a local mafiaboss

The 73-year-old actor co-directs the stage show but he reveals there was a time early on in the play's development when Palminteri and producer Tommy Mottola weren't so keen on giving him control amid concerns of time restrictions.

"I kicked around (suggested) that I try and do (direct) it, and there was apprehension that I couldn't commit to the time," De Niro told the New York Post's Page Six.

Palminteri and Mottola entered talks with Tony Award-winning Guys and Dolls director Jerry Zaks, who eventually took on the project, and De Niro admits he was angry when he was overlooked.

"The bottom line was that I was annoyed at Tommy... I was annoyed at Chazz... because they didn't believe in me that I could do it, but I understand," he said.

"There was a time I was not talking to them. Then Tommy made a nice gesture, like, 'Life is too short'. And Chazz and I started talking," he added.

The stars worked out their differences and De Niro was brought on to co-direct with Zaks for its launch at the Paper Mill Playhouse in New Jersey a year ago.

"We all believe in the project. The last thing I wanted was to feel badly and get into petty squabbles...," he explained.

De Niro insists he understands the stageshow is "Chazz's baby", and shared, "It's too important to waste the energy - and it is a big commitment of time - I don't blame them for being apprehensive (and) we reached a compromise."