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Francis Ford Coppola, Cast Reunite to Talk Making of ‘The Godfather’

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Francis Ford Coppola, Cast of 'The Godfather' Reunite to Discuss Film's Making
(From left to right) Diane Keaton, Robert DeNiro, Robert Duvall, Francis Ford Coppola, James Caan, Al Pacino and Talia Shire pose for a portrait at ‘The Godfather’ 45th Anniversary Screening during 2017 Tribeca Film Festival closing night at Radio City Music Hall on April 29, 2017 in New York City. (Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival)


To close out the Tribeca Film Festival, attendees got a rare treat Saturday night: a panel featuring Francis Ford Coppola, Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton, and Talia Shire, discussing the making and legacy of the iconic movie The Godfather and its sequel.

Per Variety, fans got a comprehensive start-to-finish look at how the famed movie came to be. For instance, director Coppola discussed his “hesitations” with the Mario Puzo book on which the movie was based before even starting the film: “I was disappointed in the book when I first read it because it’s very long,” he told the audience. “Much of the book—about a third—is about Lucy Mancini’s anatomy.” (Mancini, who has a brief affair with Sonny, is a rather important supporting character in the book, but Coppola dialed back her importance in the movie.)

Somewhat surprisingly, Pacino’s casting as Michael Corleone was seen as controversial—and he had to endure multiple screen tests to land the part. And get this: Pacino was actually more interested in playing Sonny.

Watch the full discussion below.