The Godfather is an American film series that consists of three crime drama films directed by Francis Ford Coppola inspired by the novel of the same name by Italian-American author Mario Puzo. The films follow the trials of a Sicilian-American Mafia family whose patriarch, Don Vito Corleone, rises to be a major figure in American organized crime. His youngest son, Michael Corleone, becomes his successor. The films were distributed by Paramount Pictures and released in 1972, 1974 and 1990. The series achieved success at the box office, with the films earning over $429 million worldwide. The Godfather is seen by many as one of the greatest films of all time, while The Godfather Part II is viewed by many as the best sequel in cinematic history. The series is heavily awarded, winning 9 out of 28 total Academy Award nominations.
The Godfather was released on March 15, 1972. The feature-length film was directed by Francis Ford Coppola and based upon Mario Puzo's novel of the same name. The plot begins with Don Vito Corleone declining an offer to join in the narcotics business with notorious drug lord Virgil Sollozzo, which leads to an assassination attempt. Meanwhile, Vito's oldest son Sonny takes over the family and Michael strikes back for the assassination attempt by killing Sollozzo and a corrupted police captain, forcing Michael to go to Sicily in hiding. While in Sicily, Michael travels around the country and meets a woman he marries but who is killed in a car bombing. Michael returns to America after the news of his brother Sonny's murder. After returning, Vito turns over the reins of the family to Michael. Michael plans to move the family business to Las Vegas; but before the move, he plots the killing of the heads of the five families on the day of his nephew's baptism. Other subplots include Vito's daughter Connie's abusive marriage, Johnny Fontane's success in Hollywood and Vito's second son Fredo's role in the family business in Las Vegas.
The Godfather Part IIEdit
The Godfather Part II was released on December 20, 1974. The feature-length film was again directed by Francis Ford Coppola and based upon Mario Puzo's novel of the same name. The film is in part both a sequel and a prequel to The Godfather, presenting two parallel dramas. The main storyline, following the first film's events, centers on Michael Corleone, the new Don of the Corleone crime family, trying to hold his business ventures together from 1958 to 1959; the other is a series of flashbacks following his father, Vito Corleone, from his childhood in Sicily in 1901 to his founding of the Corleone family in New York City.
The Godfather Part IIIEdit
The Godfather Part III was released on December 25, 1990. Francis Ford Coppola returned as director for the feature-length film, while also writing the screenplay with the help of the author Mario Puzo. It completes the story of Michael Corleone, a Mafia kingpin who tries to legitimize his criminal empire, and shows the rise of Sonny Corleone's illegitimate son Vincent Mancini as Michael's successor. The film also weaves into its plot a fictionalized account of real-life events, which include the 1978 death of Pope John Paul I and the Papal banking scandal of 1981 and 1982, and links them with each other and with the affairs of Michael Corleone.
Following the reaction after the third film, Coppola stated that the idea of a fourth had been discussed but Puzo died on July 2, 1999, before they had a chance to write the film. Earlier, on June 21, 1999, The Hollywood Reporter had reported that a fourth film was in the works with García in the lead role. García has since claimed the film's script was nearly produced. After Puzo's death, Coppola decided to not continue the film series. Puzo's portion of the potential sequel, dealing with the Corleone family in the early 1930s, was eventually expanded into a novel by Ed Falco and released in 2012 as The Family Corleone. The estate of Puzo had sought to keep Paramount Pictures from producing a feature film based on the novel. This has been resolved, with Paramount gaining the rights to make more Godfather films.
The fourth film was intended to be a prequel and a sequel. They had discussed a potential script, told in a similar narrative as Part II: with younger Vito Corleone and Sonny gaining the families' political power during the 1930s; and with Vincent Corleone in the 1980s, haunted by Mary's death, running the family business through a ten-year destructive war and eventually losing the families' respect and power, seeing one final scene with Michael Corleone before his death. Many actors were announced to play in the film: Robert De Niro, Andy Garcia and Talia Shire were slated to reprise their roles. Leonardo DiCaprio was cast as a younger Sonny Corleone. Robert Duvall was supposed to reprise his role as Tom Hagen.
Compilations for home media and televisionEdit
- The Godfather Saga (1977) – Seven hours television miniseries based on the first two films and incorporating additional footage that was not included in the theatrical releases.
- The Godfather 1902–1959: The Complete Epic (1981) – Version of The Godfather Saga that was released in video (VHS format).
- The Godfather Trilogy: 1901–1980 (1992) – Ten hours compilation released directly to video (VHS and LaserDisc formats) in 1992 and 1997 encompassing the three films and incorporating footage that was not included in the theatrical releases and additional footage that the Saga or Epic releases had included.
- The Godfather The Coppola Restoration (2008) – Includes the three films on DVD (and Blu-ray) and a bonus feature disk with, among other things, an interview with David Chase, the creator of The Sopranos, discussing the cultural significance of the films.
- The Godfather Trilogy Omerta Edition (2017) – A special 45th anniversary box set edition produced in the "limited" quantity of 45,000 copies, consisting of the Coppola Restoration versions of all three films on Blu-ray, a bonus feature Blu-ray disk, and various jacket-liner materials including quote cards, word-play magnets, and scene notes ("anatomy of a scene").
Box office performanceEdit
|Film||U.S. release date||Box office gross||Budget|
|U.S. and Canada||Other territories||Worldwide|
|The Godfather||March 15, 1972||$134,966,411||$110,100,000||$245,066,411||$6 million|||
|The Godfather Part II||December 20, 1974||$47,542,841||Not released overseas||$47,542,841||$13 million|||
|The Godfather Part III||December 25, 1990||$66,666,062||$70,100,000||$136,766,062||$54 million|||
The films appear in many "Top 10" film lists, such as the Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association's Top 10 Films, IMDb top 250, Time magazine's All-Time 100 Movies, and James Berardinelli's Top 100.
|The Godfather||98% (9.27/10 average rating) (90 reviews)||100 (15 reviews)|
|The Godfather Part II||97% (9.62/10 average rating) (73 reviews)||90 (18 reviews)|
|The Godfather Part III||68% (6.42/10 average rating) (59 reviews)||60 (19 reviews)|
|Average||88% (8.44/10 average rating)||83|
The three films together were nominated for a total of 28 Academy Awards, of which they won nine. For the Best Supporting Actor award, both The Godfather and The Godfather Part II had three actors nominated for the award, which is a rare feat. Both The Godfather and The Godfather Part II won the award for Best Picture in their respective years. The Godfather Part II won the most Academy Awards with six to its credit. The Godfather Part III was nominated for seven Oscars, but won none.
- The Godfather — Nominations: 10, Wins: 3
- The Godfather Part II — Nominations: 11, Wins: 6
- The Godfather Part III — Nominations: 7, Wins: 0
|The Godfather||The Godfather Part II||The Godfather Part III|
|Original Dramatic Score||Won|
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 The Godfather Part IV (March 8, 2012).
- ↑ Morris, Andy. The Godfather Part IV.
- ↑ Wilson, Craig. "Prequel lays out life before 'The Godfather'", USA Today, May 6, 2012. Retrieved on April 12, 2015.
- ↑ Schulder, Michael. "CNN Profiles: Ed Falco's prequel to 'The Godfather'", CNN Radio, September 4, 2012. Retrieved on October 2, 2012.
- ↑ Patten, Dominic (December 21, 2012). Paramount & Puzo Estate Settle ‘Godfather’ Suit.
- ↑ Long-Lost 'The Godfather' Prequel Revived (May 5, 2011).
- ↑ Rosen, Christopher (January 15, 2011). The Godfather Part IV Isn't Happening, Says Talia Shire.
- ↑ DiCaprio and Garcia set to star in The Godfather part IV (June 22, 1999).
- ↑ 17 Facts About ‘The Godfather: Part III’ You May Not Have Known.
- ↑ Andy Garcia: "'Godfather Part 4' is in Francis’ hands" - ShowBizCafe.com (May 1, 2012).
- ↑ Malta, J. Geoff (2006). The Godfather 1902–1959: The Complete Epic.
- ↑ The Godfather (1972)- Cast & Crew. Yahoo! Movies. Retrieved on November 20, 2006.
- ↑ The Godfather, Part II (1974)- Cast & Crew. Yahoo! Movies. Retrieved on November 20, 2006.
- ↑ The Godfather, Part III (1990)- Cast & Crew. Yahoo! Movies. Retrieved on November 20, 2006.
- ↑ The Godfather (1972). IMdb. Retrieved on May 24, 2019.
- ↑ The Godfather Part II (1974). IMdb. Retrieved on May 24, 2019.
- ↑ The Godfather Part III (1990). IMdb. Retrieved on May 24, 2019.
- ↑ James Berardinelli. Berardinelli's All-Time Top 100. Reelviews. Retrieved on March 16, 2007.
- ↑ The Godfather (1972). Fandango. Retrieved on May 23, 2019.
- ↑ The Godfather (1972). CBS Interactive. Retrieved on May 23, 2019.
- ↑ The Godfather: Part II. Fandango. Retrieved on May 23, 2019.
- ↑ The Godfather: Part II (1974). CBS Interactive. Retrieved on May 23, 2019.
- ↑ The Godfather: Part III. Fandango. Retrieved on May 23, 2019.
- ↑ The Godfather: Part III (1990). CBS Interactive. Retrieved on May 23, 2019.
- ↑ 1972 Academy Awards® Winners and History. AMC Filmsite. American Movie Classics Company LLC.. Retrieved on August 31, 2012.
- ↑ 1974 Academy Awards® Winners and History. AMC Filmsite. American Movie Classics Company LLC.. Retrieved on August 31, 2012.
- ↑ 1990 Academy Awards® Winners and History. AMC Filmsite. American Movie Classics Company LLC.. Retrieved on August 31, 2012.
- ↑ Received three nominations in this category
- ↑ Received three nominations in this category, winning one.
Further reading Edit
- AMC TV. "Ten Things You Didn't Know About the Godfather Trilogy", 2010-11-25.
- Browne, Nick (2000). Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather Trilogy. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-55950-8.
- Messenger, Chris (2012). The Godfather and American Culture: How the Corleones Became "Our Gang". SUNY Press. ISBN 978-0-7914-8870-6.
- Santopietro, Tom (2012). The Godfather Effect: Changing Hollywood, America, and Me. St. Martin's Press. ISBN 978-1-4299-5262-0.
- Sciannameo, Franco (2010). Nino Rota's The Godfather Trilogy: A Film Score Guide. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 978-0-8108-7711-5.
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