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Al Pacino has revealed that he was almost fired from The Godfather.
The actor, who played Mafia boss Michael Corleone in the trilogy, admitted the first few weeks of filming were tough.
In an interview with ABC News, Pacino said: "They wanted to fire me when I was on the picture ... [during] the shooting, first couple of weeks.
"Because they kept seeing the rushes, you know, or the footage that was shot, and they kept looking at it and thinking, 'What is he doing?'"
Director Francis Ford Coppola was the reason Pacino decided to continue with the film.
"I was so confused at that time, and Francis was so supportive, you know, and so helping me in it, all of it," he said. "If it wasn't for Francis, I would've just not showed up one day and said, 'Hey, look man, I don't want to be where I'm not wanted'. »
The Conversation is a new feature at Sound on Sight bringing together Drew Morton and Landon Palmer in a passionate debate about cinema new and old. For their third piece, they will discuss Michelangelo Antonioni’s Blow Up.
The cultural impact of Michelangelo Antonioni’s Blow Up would be very difficult to overemphasize. Upon release, Andrew Sarris referred to the film as “a mod masterpiece” and ‘Playboy’ critic Arthur Knight went so far as comparing the film to Hiroshima mon amour, Rome Open City, and Citizen Kane in its potential influence on filmmaking. The film was also a massive hit worldwide and the tenth highest grossing film in the United States in 1966 – a memento of a brief window in time in which an art film by an Italian auteur could also do boffo box office. And, having been denied a seal by the Production Code Administration, Blow Up »
- Drew Morton
The trophy will be presented to del Toro at the San Francisco Film Festival’s awards night April 27 at the Armory. He will also be honored at “An Evening With Guillermo del Toro” on April 25 at the Castro Theatre with an interview, selection of clips, a sneak peek at upcoming projects and a screening of “The Devil’s Backbone.”
“Guillermo del Toro’s remarkable ability to shift between intimate political drama and blockbuster action is shared with only a very few select filmmakers at the top of the field,” said Noah Cowan, executive director of the society, in a statement. “This award is a tribute to his boundless imagination and to his deep understanding of cinema history. Del Toro is both a great teacher and a boisterous communicator of why »
- Dave McNary
“So everyone was predicting a disaster and when it wasn’t, then everyone started spending that much,” said Bogdanovich. “We made ‘The Last Picture Show’ for $1.3 million and it made a ton of money.”
“The Last Picture Show” star Timothy Bottoms held a Q&A with the director at the Fremont Theater prior to a screening of the desolate black-and-white drama, nominated for eight Oscars including best picture and director (Ben Johnson and Cloris Leachman won for their supporting performances).
“I never »
- Dave McNary
Teresa Wright: Later years (See preceding post: "Teresa Wright: From Marlon Brando to Matt Damon.") Teresa Wright and Robert Anderson were divorced in 1978. They would remain friends in the ensuing years. Wright spent most of the last decade of her life in Connecticut, making only sporadic public appearances. In 1998, she could be seen with her grandson, film producer Jonah Smith, at New York's Yankee Stadium, where she threw the ceremonial first pitch. Wright also became involved in the Greater New York chapter of the Als Association. (The Pride of the Yankees subject, Lou Gehrig, died of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis in 1941.) The week she turned 82 in October 2000, Wright attended the 20th anniversary celebration of Somewhere in Time, where she posed for pictures with Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour. In March 2003, she was a guest at the 75th Academy Awards, in the segment showcasing Oscar-winning actors of the past. Two years later, »
- Andre Soares
Over on the El Rey network, Robert Rodriguez has been putting together a growing number of insightful filmmaker talks with his "The Director's Chair" series. So far, John Carpenter, Guillermo del Toro, and Quentin Tarantino have sat down in conversation with Rodriguez, and the latest director to stop by, is none other than the legendary Francis Ford Coppola. Across forty-five minutes, the always interesting Coppola recounts the origins of his fascination with storytelling (comparing himself to Max Fischer from "Rushmore" at one point), various aspects of shooting "The Godfather" (including collapsing when Paramount told him he couldn't hire Marlon Brando), the three stipulations he had before agreeing to make the sequel, and more. There's lots to take in and this is a must watch for any cinephile, so take a break and watch below. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Teresa Wright and Matt Damon in 'The Rainmaker' Teresa Wright: From Marlon Brando to Matt Damon (See preceding post: "Teresa Wright vs. Samuel Goldwyn: Nasty Falling Out.") "I'd rather have luck than brains!" Teresa Wright was quoted as saying in the early 1950s. That's understandable, considering her post-Samuel Goldwyn choice of movie roles, some of which may have seemed promising on paper. Wright was Marlon Brando's first Hollywood leading lady, but that didn't help her to bounce back following the very public spat with her former boss. After all, The Men was released before Elia Kazan's film version of A Streetcar Named Desire turned Brando into a major international star. Chances are that good film offers were scarce. After Wright's brief 1950 comeback, for the third time in less than a decade she would be gone from the big screen for more than a year. »
- Andre Soares
Fans of the hit Fox TV series Gotham will have to find something else to do on Monday nights for the next six weeks, as the show goes on hiatus before it returns to close out Season 1 with the final stretch of episodes starting April 13. The show was already given an early renewal for Season 2 back in January, but now it seems the show will be short at least one series regular this fall, as Jada Pinkett Smith isn't coming back. The actress appeared on Live with Kelly and Michael earlier today, where she revealed that her character Fish Mooney will not be sticking around next year. Here's what she had to say, when host Kelly Ripa asked if she was coming back for the second season:
"I don't think so, no. I signed for a year and the year is up. But there are some great things coming ahead on Gotham, »
Harrison Ford injured in plane accident (image: Harrison Ford as Colonel Graff in 'Ender's Game') Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark actor Harrison Ford was supposed to be in critical condition – later reports have upgraded that to "fair" or "stable" condition – following an accident with a small airplane on Los Angeles' Westside. Earlier this afternoon (March 5, 2015), a vintage, one-engine two-seater crash landed at the Penmar Golf Course, located in the Los Angeles suburb of Venice, not far from the Pacific Ocean and just west of Santa Monica Airport. Its pilot, 72-year-old Harrison Ford, was found "seriously" injured. He was alone on the plane. There were no injuries on the ground. As explained in the Los Angeles Times, "fire officials would not identify the victim of the crash but said he was conscious and breathing when paramedics arrived." Ford was later transported to an unidentified hospital. Eleven »
- Zac Gille
Elizabeth Keen might be single and ready to mingle, but let's not forget that she's actually married to Washington D.C.'s resident deranged murderer, Tom Keen -- aka our second-favorite character on "The Blacklist" other than Raymond Reddington's fedora. Last time we checked on Tom, he was secretly in cahoots with Red, and this week he's back for even more iffiness. In other words, your prayers have been answered. But what does Tom want? Read on.
Reddington Gets Himself Kidnapped, Liz Flies To His Rescue Apparently there's a creepy family known as the Kings lurking around the USofA, and they consist of a geriatric old man named Earl and his two sons, Tyler and Francis. These American royals (not to be confused with actual American royals, Kim and Kanye West) spend their time hosting covert auctions where anything from paintings to humans are sold, and their latest acquisition is Reddington's friend, »
- Mehera Bonner
While David Cairns is spending the week with the work of René Clément, it's Errol Morris Week at Grantland. Also in today's roundup of news and views: Early television work by Tim Burton and David Cronenberg. D.W. Griffith's The Birth of a Nation at 100. Erich Kuersten argues that The Terror (1963), begun on a whim by Roger Corman and completed by Francis Ford Coppola and Monte Hellman, "is part one of a very strange textural existential genre meltdown Hellman trilogy" that would be followed by The Shooting (1966) and Two-Lane Blacktop (1971). Charles Mudede writes about spending a week in a hotel room with Michael Pitt. And more. » - David Hudson »
Chicago – Moving up the rankings like greased lightning, the DePaul University School of Cinematic Arts cracked the Top 20 of all film schools in the U.S. in 2014, after building a program that didn’t exist 20 years ago. A couple reasons why are School Director Matt Irvine and Screenwriting Professor Kristyn Jo Benedyk.
One of the more successful programs in the school is “Project Blue Light,” an interactive course that places students in typical jobs on a movie set, to create short films that eventually will be festival eligible. This is done through a partnership with Cinespace, a studio facility on Chicago’s west side, where DePaul University has a substantial presence. The philosophy of the school is “hands-on,” to allow the next generation of film creatives to flex their skills and find their niche.
HollywoodChicago.com got the opportunity to interview Kristyn Jo Benedyk and Matt Irvine, to get a »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Director Robert Rodriguez has possibly come up with the coolest idea for a TV interview show, especially for fans of cinema. "The Director's Chair," airing on Rodriguez's El Rey Network, shows the Desperado filmmaker sitting down for a casual chat with some of the best filmmakers alive. Previous episodes already showed discussions with John Carpenter, Guillermo del Toro, and a Quentin Tarantino two-parter. For his fifth and latest installment, premiering this week, Rodriguez talks with director Francis Ford Coppola, one of the greatest maverick filmmakers who gave us some of the very best the art form has to offer. Rodriguez's format for the show is not the typical Q&A most director's commonly sit down for (see more examples at elreynetwork.com). He has more of a conversation with them, casually interviewing them about their careers, their films, and both their successes and failures. Coppola doesn't shy away from the failures in his filmography, »
- Jeremy Kirk
“It’s a Sicilian message. It means Luca Brasi sleeps with the fishes.”
The Godfather Screens with live music accompaniment by the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra March 27th at Powell Hall in St. Louis
I’ve often said there’s nothing better than watching silent movies with live music, but what about watching sound movies with live music? When the movie is The Godfather and the score is being performed by the award-winning St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, it just becomes one of those events that can’t be missed. Justin Freer conducts Nino Rota’s beloved score performed live by the Stl Symphony with Francis Ford Coppola’s Academy Award®-winning full-length masterpiece shown from the Powell Hall stage beginning at 7pm Friday March 27th. It’s an offer you cannot refuse!
“Do you renounce Satan?” asks a priest near the end of The Godfather (1972) as he’s baptizing Michael Corleone’s son. »
- Tom Stockman
"When he grows, he will grow strong." Better than Part 1? It's an endless debate... Which is better - The Godfather: Part 1 or Part 2? Well, if you're partial to Part 2, you might want to take a look at this. French artist Laurent Durieux has created a new screen print for Francis Ford Coppola's iconic 1974 sequel The Godfather: Part II. Odd City Entertainment will be releasing the print in limited quantities starting this week, including a special edition printed on wood (!) with 12 colors that will go for $300. Again, might be worth it if you're partial to Part 2. This is one gorgeous poster and the quote at the bottom really tops it off. Here's a full look at the art by Durieux, debuted by Collider. Top version is the regular edition at $65 each. This is the variant below, which features Italian lettering. The wood version will not be using this variant. »
- Alex Billington
This is a reprint of our interview from the 2014 Fantastic Fest. When it comes to documentaries that chart the making of a particular film, some of the very best have come from those closest to the filmmakers. The most towering achievement in this regard is probably "Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse," an intense making-of documentary that follows Francis Ford Coppola and the bonkers production of "Apocalypse Now," which was co-authored by Coppola's wife, Eleanor. Following in Eleanor's footsteps is Liv Corfixen, the wife of "Drive" filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn, who took to cataloguing the production of Refn's polarizing, Bangkok-set thriller "Only God Forgives," with "My Life Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn." We had the chance to sit down with Refn and Corfixen at the recent Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas. The documentary is an intimate portrait of frustration and familial unrest (since they had to move the family »
- Drew Taylor
Rather than take a backseat to “Drive” director Nicolas Winding Refn, occasional actress and full-time housewife Liz Corfixen fires back with a film of her own, billed as a behind-the-scenes look at her helmer husband’s Bangkok-made “Only God Forgives,” but essentially a loose production diary from her point of view. For anyone who’s ever wondered what being married to a tortured, world-famous director must be like, “My Life Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn” suggests the sacrifices required of those who live in an artist’s orbit, but it fails to offer what groupies surely want, which is insight into Refn’s creative process.
Though billed as a documentary, this 59-minute doodle barely rises above homemovie status, featuring more material of Corfixen’s two daughters dancing naked around hotel rooms than it does actual on-set footage — though ambient music from “Drive” composer Cliff Martinez gives her a distinct advantage over most amateur videographers. »
- Peter Debruge
★★★☆☆ Liv Corfixen's My Life Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn (2014) starts from the unfortunate position of being wide open to comparison with another behind-the-scenes peek, Eleanor Coppola's Heart of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse (1991). Where that film followed the incredible disasters that befell Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now (1979) shoot, this documents the far less eventful making of Danish enfant terrible Refn's Only God Forgives (2013). While Corfixen's film - clocking in at just under an hour - is little more than a DVD extra, it's also an intimate look at her husband's struggle with artistic satisfaction and her own with a life indentured to his blossoming career.
- CineVue UK
Edited by Adam Cook
The lineup for this year's New Directors/New Films, "presented jointly by the Film Society of Lincoln Center and The Museum of Modern Art," has been announced. "For the Birds": Richard Brody picks on the Academy Awards. There's an intriguing new film journal on the scene: "The Completist," authored by Rumsey Taylor. Head over to the site to read his "Statement of Intentions". Described as being "roughly quarterly", we're looking forward to future instalments. In Film Comment, Tanner Tafelski writes on the films of John Korty:
"Carroll Ballard, Francis Ford Coppola, George Lucas, Philip Kaufman, and Michael Ritchie all are, or were, San Francisco–based filmmakers. Yet none of these people seem to be Bay Area filmmakers like Martin Scorsese, Abel Ferrara, or Spike Lee are New York filmmakers. Avant-garde cinema, on the other hand, has a rich history with the West Coast in general, »
The second outing for Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, Avengers: Age Of Ultron, has upped the ante for the crew, who this time will find themselves up against one of Tony Stark’s own creations, Ultron. This morning brought word on the vast changes Joss Whedon has in store for the sentient ‘bot, and what fans can expect. Now, we’ve learned that the superhero sequel is set to boast what Whedon himself has dubbed “a pre-credit Bondian blow-out.”
“The opening location is really stunning,” he told Empire Magazine. “There was a moment where there were soldiers and different kinds of people fighting them, and these guys in winter camo come up on a castle in one of those mountain resort elevators that goes side-to-side and looks like a gumball machine, and I was looking at the Italian Alps and the mist and the castle, and this weird thing rises up, »
- Gem Seddon
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