Coppola, Pacino, De Niro celebrate 45th anniversary of ‘The Godfather’

Francis Ford Coppola, Al Pacino, Diane Keaton, Robert De Niro and others attended nine-hour screening and talk in New York on film’s 45th anniversary

The Godfather is widely regarded as one of the greatest and most influential films in Hollywood history.

The director and cast of The Godfather reminisced on Saturday in a 45th anniversary reunion in New York about the trials, perseverance and inspiration that resulted in the Oscar-winning Mafia movies.

Coppola, Pacino, Robert De Niro, Diane Keaton, James Caan, Talia Shire and Robert Duvall watched back-to-back screenings of The Godfather (1972) and The Godfather: Part II (1974) along with an audience of 6,000 on the closing night of the Tribeca film festival.

“I haven’t seen these movies for years,” Coppola said. “I found [watching] a very emotional experience. I forgot a lot about the making of it and thought about the story, and the story used a lot of family and my personal stuff.”

“It was a great script,” said Pacino. “But … at the time we were so young and inexperienced. We didn’t know what filmmaking was, really.”

Yep, it was Pacino who had his doubts. He noted that he would be doing scenes and hearing “people snickering on the other end. You say, ‘Well, this isn’t going well.'”

The two films won nine Oscars and their tale of how an orphan from Sicily emigrated to the United States at the turn of the 20th century and formed the Corleone crime family became movie classics.

Taking place over a marathon nine hours, the event saw fans watch restored versions of The Godfather I and II, along with a panel discussion hosted by director Taylor Hackford.

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About the Author: Akhtar Jamal

Tribune International