The Godfather

Trivia: The term "godfather" was never actually used by the actual mob, author Mario Puzo just made it up. Yet after the book and film came out people started assuming it was, so it started appearing in news reports. And it is now actually used by the mob.

Trivia: Although Coppola was advised not to talk to real Mafioso because they would never stop bugging him and it might change how he filmed the movie, James Caan did spend time with various Mafia heads, and got much of his character quirks, expressions and gestures from them.

Trivia: Al Pacino's real-life grandfather was born in Corleone, Sicily, the same town that the fictional Vito Corleone, Michael's father, was born in and from where he adopted the family surname. As a child, Pacino's family called him "Sonny." That is the same nickname his on-screen brother, played by James Caan, was called. Revealed by Al Pacino on The Actor's Studio.

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Trivia: In the scene where Sonny is killed by the men with the Tommy Guns, James Caan was very apprehensive about how many squibs he was wearing (147, a record number at that time, and therefore very dangerous). He only did that scene because he didn't want to lose face in front of the female crew members.

Trivia: Francis Ford Coppola's original choice to play gangster Hyman Roth was James Cagney. He begged Cagney to take the role, even visiting him at his home, but Cagney turned him down.


Trivia: In order to get the part as Vito Corleone, Marlon Brando had to put up a $1 million dollar bond due to his reputation as being a difficult actor to deal with.

Trivia: The house Jack Woltz lives in, where he discovers the horse's head in his bed, is also where JFK spent his honeymoon. Called the "Beverly House", William Randolph Hearst lived there until 1951, and it's been used in The Bodyguard and Fletch.

Jon Sandys Premium member

Trivia: In the scene where Michael is rolling Don Corleone on the hospital gurney he accidentally mashes the Don's hand between the gurney and the doorway. Marlon Brando snatches his hand away, Al Pacino briefly pauses, then continues with the shot.

Thomas S Wilson

Trivia: Al Pacino refused to go to the Academy Awards after the film's release because he was nominated for Best Supporting Actor, even though he had more screen time than Marlon Brando, who had been nominated for Best Actor.

Trivia: Woltz's reaction to seeing a horses head on his pillow was real. The actor was unaware of what was to unfold in the scene, making it genuinely shocking.

Trivia: Although Marlon Brando is first billed, he is only in the film for less than an hour.

Trivia: The race horse in Woltz's stable is a high quality healthy stud horse, but when the (real) horse's head is in the bed it has cataracts in its eyes - probably because an older horse had been sent to the slaughterhouse, and its head used for this scene.


Continuity mistake: When Luca Brasi is practicing his speech he is wearing a square faced watch. When he gives his speech to the godfather he's wearing a round faced watch.

Bill Early

More mistakes in The Godfather

Michael: My father is no different than any powerful man, any man with power, like a president or senator.
Kay Adams: Do you know how naive you sound, Michael? Presidents and senators don't have men killed.
Michael: Oh. Who's being naive, Kay?

More quotes from The Godfather

Question: Two people kiss Michael's ring in the final scene. Clemenza is one, who is the other?

Answer: First, Clemenza kisses Michael's ring, then Rocco Lampone. Al Neri is the one who closes the door, but he is not shown kissing the ring.

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More questions & answers from The Godfather

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