Gotti: Three Generations has hit a series of setbacks over the last few years, with Lindsay Lohan dropping out of the project and Joe Pesci successfully suing producers after they changed his part.
The film is now back on track after Captain America: The First Avenger filmmaker Johnston was hired to take the helm.
A statement from the director reads, "I think we've always been fascinated with the idea of the romantic outlaw. John Gotti could be in one instance a charismatic, kind and loving family man, and in another, deadly to his enemies. The opportunity to tell the true story of Gotti with John Travolta is a director's dream."
Travolta adds, "I'm looking forward to portraying John Gotti - it's been a long time coming. And I think that Johnston is an exciting and fresh addition to the vision of the film. We are all looking forward to starting production."
The stalled project will now begin shooting in New York in September (13). The crime boss died behind bars in 2002.