DeNiro Had to Convince Francis Ford Coppola to Attend The Godfather Reunion

Carmine Coppola
Baseline

Revered director Francis Ford Coppola was initially reluctant to stage a cast reunion for his movie classic The Godfather for the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival.

Robert De Niro, who co-founded the New York festival, approached Coppola about the idea of celebrating the 45th anniversary of the 1972 release with a special double screening of the mob movie and its sequel, The Godfather: Part II, in which the Raging Bull actor stars, but the filmmaker wasn’t interested.

Francis was not too inclined to wanna do it,” De Niro revealed on Today on Wednesday (19Apr17), hours before the Tribeca Film Festival kick-off.

It took some convincing from De Niro, who promised it would be an event like no other, before Coppola agreed to take part.

The Godfather
Paramount Pictures via Everett Collection

“He’s been asked a lot (to take part in movie reunions), but I said, ‘Come on, let’s try and do it this one time, it’ll never happen (again),'” the acting icon recalled. “‘(It’ll be at) Radio City, it’ll be great, blah blah blah,’ and he was great about it, he said OK, and then the rest of the cast said they would do it too.”

The anniversary get-together will take place at the Big Apple’s fabled Radio City Music Hall on 29 April (17), when Coppola will front a post-screening panel featuring franchise stars Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton, Talia Shire, and De Niro.

Festival organizers will also hold a celebratory retrospective of Reservoir Dogs, with director Quentin Tarantino teaming up with the cast of the cult film for a group discussion following a 25th anniversary screening.

The Tribeca Film Festival will open with the debut of the documentary Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives on Wednesday night. It will run until 30 April (17).

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