Megalopolis: Francis Ford Coppola ready to make his dream project
The Godfather director has a script in place and has begun speaking to potential stars for the film, including Jude Law. The film is set in New York and is an architect’s attempt to create a utopia inside the city. He’d begun filming scenes for the film in New York in mid-2001, but told us back in 2007 that stopped filming after the events of 9/11. Now, he tells Deadline that he’s ready to take up the mantle once again.
“I plan this year to begin my longstanding ambition to make a major work utilizing all I have learned during my long career, beginning at age 16 doing theater, and that will be an epic on a grand scale, which I’ve entitled Megalopolis,” Coppola explained. “It is unusual; it will be a production on a grand scale with a large cast. It makes use of all of my years of trying films in different styles and types culminating in what I think is my own voice and aspiration. It is not within the mainstream of what is produced now, but I am intending and wishing and in fact encouraged, to begin production this year.”
Coppola has also readied a new version of his 1979 Vietnam drama Apocalypse Now for screening at the Tribeca Film Festival, titled Apocalypse Now: Final Cut, a version of the film that he’s happiest with.
“Even though I’ve had ‘final cut’ since Godfather‘s success,” Coppola said. “I always tried to be reasonable about ideas or suggestions made by the ‘finance’ partners, distributors or studios. However, their unanimous comment of ‘too long’ often led to trimming things out, whereas in retrospect the solution can often be to put more in. Also, changes often beget other changes and you don’t quite realize then the road you are following.”
Back in 2001, Coppola released Apocalypse Now: Redux, which contained numerous scenes that were cut from the original film, padding its runtime by nearly an hour. “When asked which version I personally wanted to be shown, I often felt that the original 1979 was too abruptly shortened, and Redux was too long, and settled on what I now felt was the perfect version, which is what we’re showing at Tribeca later this month, called Apocalypse Now Final Cut.”
(Photo credit: Getty Images)