Watch: The trailer for The Godfather Coda
The Godfather: Part III is among the most-maligned movies of all time – the stick with which to beat all cynical sequel movies that would follow in its wake.
But now, hoping to somehow restore its reputation, Mario Puzo’s The Godfather, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone finds Hollywood icon Francis Ford Coppola having re-edited the final chapter in the mob saga, arriving on the auspicious 30th anniversary of the original film.
According to the man himself, the movie will deliver 'a more appropriate conclusion to The Godfather and The Godfather: Part II'.
Adds Coppola: “Mario Puzo’s The Godfather, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone is an acknowledgement of Mario’s and my preferred title and our original intentions for what became The Godfather: Part III.
“For this version of the finale, I created a new beginning and ending, and rearranged some scenes, shots, and music cues. With these changes and the restored footage and sound, to me, it is a more appropriate conclusion to The Godfather and The Godfather: Part II and I’m thankful to Jim Gianopulos and Paramount for allowing me to revisit it.”
The movie is a frame-by-frame 4K restoration of the movie's original negative, but repairing the reputation of the original movie is a sturdy task.
Made in a hurry following the box office successes of The Godfather and Godfather II, it received none of the accolades of its predecessors, despite being nominated for a clutch of Academy Awards, with the New Yorker famously calling it 'a public humiliation' (though veteran Roger Ebert quite liked it).
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It follows Al Pacino's Michael Corleone as he vies to turn his criminal empire into a legitimate business, but it roundly underwhelmed in the shadow of the Oscar-trawling first and second parts.
The movie was also derided for Coppola's decision to cast his own daughter, Sofia Coppola, then 19, in the role of Mary Corleone, following the departure of Winona Ryder from the role due to 'nervous exhaustion'.
Coppola has said that the new cut will address and justify his contentious casting decision.
Starring Pacino, Diane Keaton, Andy Garcia, Franc D'Ambrosio, Bridget Fonda, George Hamilton, Joe Mantegna and Sofia Coppola, Mario Puzo's THE GODFATHER, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone is in select cinemas from 5-6 December, and will debut on Blu-ray or Download & Keep on the 8 December, 2020.
Watch: The Godfather Coda featurette