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PCR #330. (Vol. 7, No. 29) This edition is for the week of July 17--23, 2006.
Mike's RantMike's Bust
Hello, gang! I'm smack in the middle of coaching in the American Legion "AAA" baseball tournament so it's going to be a short one. Shall we begin?

On the Set of "The End is Blossoming", a Guzzo Bros Production  by Nolan B. Canova
The Tampa Film Review for July  by Nolan B. Canova
"Clerks 2"  by Mike Smith
VSDA  by Mark Terry
I Meant To Mention This Last Week....Anne Francis Stars In....Love Those Wings....My Favorite Films, Part 29: "The Godfather"  by Mike Smith
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This past Sunday, July 16, marked the 25th anniversary of the death of one of my personal heroes, Harry Chapin. Chapin, who was killed in an automobile accident, is well known as a singer/songwriter but he was also one of the first celebrities to get involved with helping the less fortunate in the world. And horror film fans should take note that Harry was instrumental in getting Wes Craven his first directing job.

"Rocky Horror" fans will shout out in unison, "Forbidden Planet!" This year marks the 50th anniversary of the films' release and November 14 will bring two special edition DVDs to the masses. The two disc edition will include the film, some documentaries and a few other films, etc that feature Robby the Robot! A more extravagant version features an action figure of Robby and reproduced lobby cards.

Sad to report the death of Hooters restaurant chairman Robert Brooks. Brooks died last week after a lengthy illness. He was 69. Long time Gulf Coast pals should have fond memories of the goodies we used to get at the Hooters in Clearwater!

Starring: Marlon Brando, James Caan, Al Pacino and Robert Duvall
Directed by: Francis Ford Coppola

FIRST SEEN: ABC Television, Chicago, Illinois
FAVORITE LINE: "Leave the gun. Take the cannolis."
FAVORITE SCENE: Michael kills Sollozzo

  • Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Actor in a Leading Role (Brando) and Best Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium (Francis Ford Coppola and Mario Puzo).
  • Academy Award nominations for Best Supporting Actor (Caan, Pacino and Duvall), Best Costume Design, Best Director, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score and Best Sound
  • BAFTA Award for Best Film Music - Nino Rota
  • BAFTA nominations for Best Actor (Brando), Best Newcomer (Pacino), Best Supporting Actor (Duvall) and Best Costume Design
  • Director's Guild of America award for Best Director
  • Golden Globe Awards for Best Director, Best Motion Picture (Drama), Best Actor (Drama) - Brando, Best Original Score and Best Screenplay. Golden Globe nominations for Best Actor (Pacino), Best Supporting Actor (Caan)
  • Grammy Award for Best Original Score Written for a Motion Picture - Nino Rota
  • Kansas City Film Critics Circle Awards for Best Actor - Marlon Brando (tied with Stacy Keach in "Fat City") and Best Director.
  • Writer's Guild of America Award for Best Drama, Adapted from Another Medium

    Originally conceived as a "quicky" gangster movie, "The Godfather" has endured over more then 30 years and in most circles is generally accepted as one of the top three films ever made.

    When Paramount Pictures bought the rights to film the best selling novel by Mario Puzo, it planned to release it to coincide with the paperback issue of the book. After much consideration, the job of adapting and directing the film went to a young film maker named Francis Ford Coppola. Not only had Coppola recently won an Oscar as one of the writers of "Patton," but the studio felt that if they hired an Italian-American director they would avoid any trouble with the Italian-American community. Working with Puzo, Coppola penned an epic, far from the cheap drive in movie the studio wanted. Despite the protests of the suits at Paramount, who wanted Ernest Borgnine in the role, Coppola hired Marlon Brando to play the title character, Don Vito Corleone. He also chose Al Pacino, a young theatre actor, for the pivotal role of Michael Corleone much to the chagrin of the studio, who suggested everyone from Warren Beatty to Burt Reynolds to Robert Redford. Coppola also chose to shoot the film in New York, rather then on a sound stage, feeling the actual locations would give the film the realistic look he wanted.

    Released in March 1972, "The Godfather' played on 6 screens and grossed an amazing $300,000. That's $50,000 per screen. It went on to earn an amazing $86 million in its first run in the US. It battled Bob Fosse's "Cabaret" in all of the end of the year award presentations, though "Cabaret" earned five more Oscars, including Best Director for Fosse. My first viewing of the film was a "Special Event" that ABC presented in 1973. At the time, Coppola was directing "The Godfather Part II," and was seen during the commercial breaks editing footage from that film. Coppola also made a PSA informing viewers that the film was not an indictment of Italian-Americans. In other words, everyone from Italy wasn't in the mob! Incidentally, "The Godfather Part II" went on to win the Best Picture Oscar as well, becoming the first sequel to win the award. In 1990, "The Godfather, Part III" also earned a Best Picture nomination, making it the first time all films in a trilogy had been nominated for Best Picture. This later happened with the "Lord of the Rings" films, with the third film, "Return of the King," taking home the big prize.

    Next week I'll look at a film that won almost every critic award as Best Picture only to be sunk at the Oscars by the juggernaut that was James Cameron's "Titanic":   "L.A. Confidential"

    Well, that's all for now. Have a great week. See ya!

    "Mike's Rant" is ©2006 by Michael A. Smith.  Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of Nolan B. Canova. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2006 by Nolan B. Canova.