The Godfather Movie House!Must SeeTop 10 Florida Condos For Sale
Rated as one of the best movies of all time, The Godfather, the blockbuster crime film produced in 1972, ran away with the Oscars winning Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Adapted Screenplay. The portrayals of an extended New York crime family by its cast of Marlon Brando, then unknown Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall and Diane Keaton showed the personal lives of the Mafia during their heyday years of the 1940s to the 1960s. Most of the movie’s scenes were filmed in New York City locations including Bellevue Hospital, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Calvary Cemetery and, especially, a 1930-built Staten Island Tudor that was the stately home of Vito Corleone.
Now a classic, it’s surprising that the movie had a hard time getting made. Paramount Pictures bought the film rights to Mario Puzo’s book based only on the first sixty pages written in 1967. The screenplay for the film wasn’t started until the book was completed and published in 1969, eventually ending up on the New York Times Best Seller List for 67 weeks, selling over 10 million copies. But Paramount had a problem. They couldn’t find a director who would take it on. After twelve directors had turned it down, they asked Francis Ford Coppola. At first he too turned it down, but due to his rather desperate personal and business finances at the time, thought better of it and finally went back to Paramount and accepted the job. At that point, he and Puzo set about writing the screenplay. The first disagreement that ensued between Coppola and the studio was over location. The studio wanted it to be filmed in Kansas on a small budget of $2.5 million, but Coppola held out for New York. Coppola finally won and the budget was raised to $6.5 million.
The movie home chosen for Vito Corleone, played by Marlon Brando, was the longtime family home of Edward and Mary Norton in the Todt Hill neighborhood of Staten Island. It was recommended by Gianni Russo who grew up in the area and played the role of Vito’s traitor son-in-law, Carlos Rizzi. However, when the Paramount people knocked on the Nortons' door to ask about the house, Edward thought it was a joke and shut the door. Mrs Norton chased them down and agreed to let Paramount use the house in return for a new slate roof.
The Norton home was large, but unpretentious enough to blend in seamlessly with five neighboring homes to look like one big compound on movie screens during the 18 months of the film's production. Godfather fans will probably remember the home best for the movie’s opening garden party wedding reception for Vito’s daughter, Connie Corleone, while bobby-sox pop singer Johnny Fontane pleaded for the Godfather’s help to land a coveted Hollywood movie role. The home was also a good place for the Corleone family and associates to hunker down during the Mafia Wars.
Now for sale after a complete renovation in 2012, the 6,248-square-foot natural stone Tudor is sited on over a half acre of lawns, mature trees and landscaping that invites any size garden party and now enhanced further with an inground saltwater pool and infrared grill. No longer is the kitchen the small 1940’s-style where the cauldron of "Sunday gravy" simmered, but is now a modern day cook’s kitchen and breakfast room where friends and family gather in comfort. With five bedrooms and seven baths, the house is perfect for a large family and their guests with entertaining made easy in the formal rooms. There are also two offices, gym, playroom and two fireplaces. The basement features an English pub and man cave area with a game room, storage room with bath and four-car garage. Also a sound system, intercom, radiant heat, natural gas generator and, of course, a state-of-the-art security system. For more information.
The Staten Island home of the fabled Vito Corleone, seen around the world in the film The Godfather that grossed $245 million, is for sale after a complete renovation priced at $2.895 million.