the godfather, 1972

Director

Francis Ford Coppola

Cast

visit the film locations

New York: Flights: JFK Airport

New York: Accommodation: stay in luxury, like Michael and Kay, at the St Regis, 2 East 55th Street (tel: 212/767.0525) on the corner of Fifth Avenue or, more modestly, the Edison Hotel, 228 West 47th Street near Times Square

Visit: Sands Point Preserve, the Guggenheim estate, 95 Middleneck Road on Long Island

Staten Island: Take the Staten Island Ferry from Battery Park to St George. The Staten Island Rapid Transit Railway will take you from St George Station, four stops to Grasmere. From here, it's about a half hour's walk north to Longfellow Road, a leafy cul-de-sac running east from Ocean Terrace. Numbers 110 and 120 are the last houses at the end of the road. PLEASE NOTE: these are private residences.

Continue on to Pleasant Plains (about an hour's ride) to visit Mission of the Immaculate Virgin, Hylan Boulevard, Mount Loretto, down in the southwest corner of the island.


Trivia

Most guide books identify the Corleone compound neighbourhood on Staten Island as Todt Hill – which translates melodramatically as ‘Death Hill’ – but Todt Hill is actually nearby.

Godfather Part II is regarded by many as one of the few sequels to exceed the original. The Godfather Part III didn’t exceed either.

The Edison Hotel’s glamorous deco lobby is seen again in Woody Allen’s Bullets Over Broadway

The Godfather filming location: Corleone compound, Longfellow Road, Staten Island

The Godfather filming location: the Corleone mansion: 110 Longfellow Road, Emerson Hill, Staten Island

With mafia movies out of fashion and relatively unknown director Francis Ford Coppola at the helm, Paramount was keen to cut costs by updating the film of Mario Puzo's best-seller to the present day and filming on its Hollywood lot.

But as paperback sales hit 12 million copies, the studio reluctantly conceded to Francis Ford Coppola' s demands, and much of the film was shot on real locations in New York.

Even most of the studio filming was done on the east coast, at New York's Filmways Studios, 246 East 127th Street, East Harlem at Second Avenue. The studio has since closed down, and is now a huge supermarket called Foodways.

The wedding scene, at the Corleone compound on 'Long Island', did film on an island over the water from New York Ė not on Long Island, but Staten Island. The outdoor festivities were staged in the garden of 120 Longfellow Road, in the affluent neighbourhood of Emerson Hill. The Corleone Mansion itself is next door at 110 Longfellow Road.

The Staten Island Rapid Transit Railway will take you from St George Station, four stops to Grasmere. From here, it's about a half hour's walk north to Longfellow Road, a leafy cul-de-sac running east from Ocean Terrace. Numbers 110 and 120 are the last houses at the end of the road.

The Godfather filming location: Paramount Pictures, Melrose Avenue, Hollywood

The Godfather filming location: 'Woltz International Pictures': the Paramount lot, Melrose Avenue, Hollywood

The bar, where Sollozzo meets up with Luca Brasi, is the Edison Hotel, 228 West 47th Street. You'll recognise the slightly redecorated corridor with its circular mirrors as the lobby of mobster Nick Valenti's penthouse in Woody Allen's Bullets Over Broadway.

When Don Corleone sends his consigliore, Tom Hagen (Robert Duvall), to Hollywood, to make the studio head the infamous 'offer he can't refuse', there's a great newsreel shot of the old Hollywood, with Hollywood United Methodist Church on Highland Avenue (featured in movies as far back as George Cukor's 1932 What Price Hollywood?) and Grauman's Chinese Theater on Hollywood Boulevard still recognisable from the days before the area became swamped by tacky tourist shops and tattoo parlours.

The Paramount lot, 5451 Marathon Street at Bronson Avenue behind Melrose Avenue in Hollywood (the studio lot featured in Billy Wilder's Sunset Blvd) stands in for 'Woltz International Pictures'. After Woltz eventually agrees to meet up with Hagen, it's a rare case of an East Coast residence standing in for Hollywood.

The Godfather filming location: Corleone compound, Longfellow Road, Staten Island

The Godfather filming location: horse's head in the bedroom of Woltz's ‘West Coast’ villa: Falaise, Sands Point Preserve, Long Island

The bedroom of Woltz's villa, where the studio boss finds the head of his unfortunate horse, is the living room of Falaise, on Sands Point Preserve, the Guggenheim estate way out at 95 Middleneck Road on Long Island. You can see the room if you visit the Preserve, which also houses mansions seen in Scent Of A Woman, in the summer months. It's about four miles north of Point Washington (there's a cab firm near the station), on the Long Island Railroad from New York's Pennsylvania Station, Seventh Avenue.

The Godfather filming location: Woltz's Beverly Hills estate

The Godfather filming location: Woltz’s West Coast villa: Beverly Drive, Beverly Hills, Los Angeles

The exterior of Woltz's mansion, seen also as Whitney Houston's estate in The Bodyguard, really is Los Angeles. It's the enormous Beverly Hills estate at 1011 North Beverly Drive. Built in the 1920s, and once owned by William Randolph Hearst (the newspaper magnate on whom the Orson Welles classic Citizen Kane was based), it was put on the market in 2007 for $165 million.

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