Who doesn’t know about the infamous film The Godfather right? But do you know where was The Godfather filmed? Well, if you don’t, be sure to check this article, where I give you a brief overview about this cult film, and also discuss its filming locations!
The American crime genre film, The Godfather released in 1972, was inspired from Mario Puzzo’s novel that was published 3 years earlier to the film. Director Francis Coppola was so impressed with the narrative, that he decided to take Puzzo on board, to co-write the screenplay! The main story of The Godfather centers around one of the five crime families of New York, the Corleone’s. It showcases how this Italian family established a strong foothold in the world of organized crime in America, through the character of Vito Corleone.
The Godfather was a blockbuster hit! The film grossed over $291 million with a budget of just $8 million! The crime drama film, won a total of 31 prestigious awards, out of which there were 3 Oscars.
Now, before we move on to find out where was The Godfather filmed. Let’s discuss the plot of the movie, in brief. So that you may get a better grip of the actual storyline!
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Plot Of The Godfather | What’s It About
The Godfather stands as the first instalment of The Godfather trilogy! This film came out on top in every aspect, as compared to the sequels that followed in the later years. The film begins by introducing us to the character of Vito Corleone, counselling a bunch of people who were attending his daughter’s wedding in New York.
Right off the start, we see the humane side of Vito, and his innate nature of helping people and delivering justice. Which sharply distinguishes him from the other mob bosses! Later in the film, the important character of Michael is introduced. Who arrives at the wedding after completing his service at a marine. And stays back, to support his father.
Michael, disapproving at first, understands the motifs of the other crime families. And chooses to retaliate against the perpetrators who attacked his father! Michael is shown to implicitly devise ingenious plans, that slowly but steadily helps him to take out the enemies! One at a time! Finally at the denouement of the film, Vito Corleone dies. And Michael is annexed as the next Godfather.
So, it’s about time for us to explore where was The Godfather filmed. So that you can enjoy the delightful shooting locations of this classic film!
Where Was The Godfather Filmed? Let’s Know This Classic Film Closely!!
Director Francis Coppola and cinematographer Gordon Willis broke a number of moulds while shooting The Godfather. Right after the production unit finalized to shoot this film in America and Italy, director Coppola started prepping the actors for the roles. Even before the filming began, Coppola booked a luxurious hotel for two weeks, to make the actors rehearse their parts and dialogues.
Speaking of thinking out of the box, other interesting facts about Coppola’s filming techniques were that, firstly, he decided not to employ any modern filming methods of the time. Instead he opted to shoot the film in a “tableau format”. And secondly, he used an actual severed head of a horse, to film a particular sequence!
Coming back to the film, The Godfather, majority of the filming in America, took place in New York, while some scenes were also filmed in the state of California. And to recreate the scenes of Italy, the filming crew had to travel overseas to Sicily. Now let’s dive right in and explore the exact locations that were used for filming, The Godfather.
New York, California | USA
The principal photography of The Godfather began in the summer of 1971. The production unit wanted to shoot the sequences that portrayed Corleone mansion, first. Thus right at the beginning of the filming schedule they arrived in Staten Island to shoot the sequence. A medium sized house located at 110 Longfellow Avenue, was used to film the scenes which showcased the mansion of The Godfather.
The production crew had to build a stone wall around the perimeter of the house, to impose a regal and sophisticated look of the Corleone family home, that director Coppola wanted to showcase.
Other outdoor scenes in the city of New York were filmed in Manhattan mostly. The St. Regis Hotel, Radio City Music Hall, and Mietz Building, were featured in important sequences. However the most noteworthy sequence was filmed in lower Manhattan, at St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral. The scene showcasing the baptism of Michael and Kay’s first born son, was filmed inside the Gothic Cathedral. The filming crew took extra precaution while filming the interior scenes at this historic location.
Soon after completing filming other scenes in New York, the production unit moved to California, in the upstate area of Beverly Hills. The sequence that featured “Woltz Mansion” in the film, was shot outside of a big mansion located at 1011 North Beverly Drive. Some other scenes which showcased Kay’s school in the movie, were also filmed in California.
Here’s a list of the movies and shows, that I’d recommend for you to watch such as American Horror Story, Luckiest Girl Alive, Entergalactic, Ramy, House, Seinfeld, The Wolf of Wall Street, and Goodnight Mommy which were also filmed in the same location.
After wrapping up the shooting in America, the production team arrived at its final filming destination in Southern Italy. The town of Forza d’ Agro located in the city of Messina was used to portray the scenes of Corleone village shown in the film. The crew then traveled 30 KM southwest of Messina to the Comune di Savoca, to shoot the scenes which showcased Michael and Appollonia’s wedding. The filming schedule lasted for a couple of weeks here, as the crew had to shoot only a handful of sequences!
Here are some cool places in Italy that you might want to look into, such as Palermo, Catania, Syracuse, Mt. Etna, Venice, Flores, Naples, Rome, Cinque Terre, Amalfi, Sardinia and Lake Como should you decide to visit this beautiful country!.
Alright ladies and gentlemen, I hope you enjoyed reading this article! But if you’d like to read other interesting articles about the latest films and shows, be sure to visit Viebly. And don’t forget to mention your thoughts in the comment section below.
Who Are The Cast Members Of The Film The Godfather?
The cast of the film The Godfather includes, Malon Brando, Al Pacino, Robert Duvall, Richard Catellano, James Caan, Diane Keaton and John Marley.
What Is The Runtime Of The Film The Godfather?
2h 55m is the runtime of the film The Godfather.
What Is The Rating Of The Film The Godfather?
The Godfather has a R rating.
Who Is The Music Director Of The Film The Godfather?
Nino Rota was the music director of the film The Godfather.
Is The Film The Godfather, Based On A True Story?
No, The Godfather is based on a novel by Mario Puzo.
When Were The Sequels Released?
The sequels of The Godfather, The Godfather: Part II and The Godfather: Part III were released in 1972 and 1990, respectively.