The Godfather Coda Is A Total Reimagining Of Godfather III

In a new interview, Francis Ford Coppola reveals the lengths he went to carry out this director's cut.

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In the 30 years since Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather: Part III, the verdict has been clear: Neither the filmmaker, critics, nor audiences have been all that fond of how that movie ended the trilogy. As has been previously reported, it's never too late to right these sorts of wrongs--Coppola has been diligently reworking the 1990 gangster movie for the new The Godfather, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone.

Out in select theaters now, and due for a digital and Blu-ray release on December 8, the film isn't a George Lucas-style futzing over an old film with minor tweaks to add more shadows to Jabba. Instead, as principals Al Pacino and Andy Garcia (virtually) attest alongside Coppola in a new interview released by Paramount Pictures, Coda is pretty much an entirely new movie altogether.

"I began with the idea that it was going to be the death of Michael Corleone," explained Coppola. This seemingly straightforward decision led the director to reframe the entire story, and then organically make new editing decisions. "Literally, by the time it was over I had done a different beginning, I had done a different ending, I had done a different middle. I had made 360 picture changes of different types... In a sense it was a new illusion."

He also added that after he screened this new version for others, "The whole group was in tears." While the listing price for The Godfather Coda is $23 for the Blu-ray copy of the movie, it is currently on sale on Amazon for $15. The film will release on December 8.

Reviews are still trickling in for this new director's cut, and the jury is still out on whether this new version was worth all the effort. If it was, the irony to the film's legacy is that Coppola and co-writer Mario Puzo originally wanted to call this film The Death of Michael Corleone, which Paramount Pictures rejected. Perhaps getting the final word on this, Coppola insists this is "a more appropriate conclusion to The Godfather and The Godfather: Part II."

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