The Godfather

The Godfather

Special guest: Introduction by makeup artist Jill Rockow.

Vito Corleone, one of the most iconic characters of 20th century American cinema, was immortalized by Marlon Brando on screen (for which he won an Oscar for Best Actor); behind the scenes, credit is shared with makeup artist Dick Smith for his collaboration with the actor on the Don’s iconic look. For the scenes in which Corleone is aged beyond Brando’s 48 years, Smith upheld the actor’s request to spend minimal time in the makeup chair by moving away from prosthetics and into more creative techniques, including the application of old age stipple and a dental plumper to add that recognizable droop to his jowls.

DIRECTED BY: Francis Ford Coppola. WRITTEN BY: Mario Puzo, Francis Ford Coppola. WITH: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall. 1972. 177 min. USA. Technicolor. English, Italian, Latin. Rated R. 4K DCP.

Academy Museum film programming generously funded by the Richard Roth Foundation. 

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