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Film Analysis Paper Research Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1250 words

Film Analysis - Research Paper ExampleMario Puzo’s book was optioned from the first fifty pages written in a unilateral decision by the head of Paramount Studios. Many studio executives and technicians distanced themselves from the idea of making this film because the Kirk Douglas film “The Brotherhood� had failed so badly in 1970. Coppola saw that flop as an indicator that films based on Italian-Americans should not be cast with non Italian-Americans. “I liked the idea of starting the movie…with, ‘I believe in America,’ because it’s what the whole movie is about,� reflected Francis Ford Coppola. “It’s saying that our country should be our family in a way, that it should afford us the protection and the honour that, in a strange way, this Mafia family does.� (Hogg) So, Coppola set out to write a movie about a traditional Italian-American family, an organized crime family and the American family; all of these families with common tradition and history and, most importantly, the American dream as foundations. Production History Paramount sought Coppola to direct The Godfather based on his Italian heritage. The studio felt the product could be more realistic if someone from those traditions led the project. Considering Coppola was broke and in the process of being evicted, it surprised everyone when he turned down the project because he did not like the novel. (Hogg) George Lucas intervened and Coppola found something he liked: the idea of the metaphoric connection among social, business and national family identity and process. Michael was America. For studio purposes, Coppola needed to insert some gangster film symbols (Manchel 2003), but the theme is family. The first production battle involved setting. The original script was set in the 1960s and 1970s, with hippies. (Hogg) The story was based on 1945-1955 events within the crime family. Coppola fought for and won the additional budget for a period film instead of saving money with a contemporary setting. The production budget was quickly increasing from $2 million to $6.8 million. One reason the studio requested Coppola was the director’s thrift in production. The Coppola vision for The Godfather, however, was not inexpensive. Casting proved to be the next production obstacle. Coppola believed other films failed at the box office because moviegoers did not believe Kirk Douglas as an Italian crime boss. Coppola wanted Italian heritage actors. The studio wanted Robert Redford to play Michael. (Hogg) Finally, the studio assigned a crew to film The Godfather. Coppola fired almost everyone because of the corrupt, undermining studio politics among the disorganized and poor teamwork oriented studio employees. The studio thought Coppola would do as instructed since he, superficially, needed the money. The studio was incorrect, but ultimately rewarded for their difficulties with an $86 million gross in the first two months (1972 dollars). Coppola established himself as the auteur director that he dreamed of becoming; however, this dream reduced his capacity to be a writer-director as he originally wanted. (Hogg) Artistic Importance “Coppola’s The Godfather, Part One is distinguished among other things by the number of scales or levels upon which it operates. In its combination of epic structure and highly individuated family melodrama, it is perhaps the American Film which most closely approximates the nineteenth-century

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