Barry Levinson‘s The Godfather making-of movie, which may or may not be called Francis and the Godfather, has added yet another impressive cast member. Elisabeth Moss will play Eleanor Coppola, filmmaker and wife of Francis Ford Coppola. Moss joins previously-announced cast members Oscar Isaac, who is playing Francis Ford Coppola, and Jake Gyllenhaal, who will play legendary producer Robert Evans.
Deadline broke the news that Elisabeth Moss would be joining the making of The Godfather movie coming from director Barry Levinson. The film will “chronicle the battles between Coppola, who was 31 at the time, and Evans, which included taking a gamble on casting Marlon Brando, who had not had a hit in years, and a then-little-known Al Pacino.” Moss is playing Coppola’s wife Eleanor, Oscar Isaac is Coppola, and Jake Gyllenhaal is Evans. No word yet on who might be playing the other famous faces from The Godfather, like Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, Diane Keaton, and James Caan.
The project comes from a blacklist screenplay by Andrew Farotte that Levinson reworked. On Moss joining the cast, Levinson said: “I’ve wanted to work with her for a long time. I couldn’t be more excited about her joining the film. Every performance of Elisabeth’s is nothing short of exceptional.” He’s right, folks – Elisabeth Moss continues to turn out fantastic, memorable performances, and I’m sure she’ll do the same here. In addition to being Mrs. Francis Ford Coppola, Eleanor Coppola is also a filmmaker. She directed Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse, a documentary that chronicled the chaotic filming of Apocalypse Now.
Released in 1972, The Godfather is heralded today as one of the best American movies ever made. But it was by no means a sure thing. Paramount Pictures bought the rights to Mario Puzo’s book before it became a best-seller, and as the film’s production was notoriously stressful. Coppola was still a relatively untested filmmaker at the time, but it was reportedly producer Robert Evans who thought Coppola should make the film because the director was Italian. Despite this, Evans and Coppola clashed throughout the production. “It was just non-stop anxiety and wondering when I was going to get fired,” Coppola said years later.
Levinson’s movie isn’t the only behind-the-scenes look at The Godfather in the works. Paramount TV is developing a TV series for Paramount+ about the making-of the film. That series is called The Offer, and Armie Hammer was originally set to star as Godfather producer Al Ruddy. However, Hammer has left the project in the wake of still-developing personal scandals.
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