Francis Ford Coppola realizes art-house ambitions

Mon Jan 21, 2008 4:27am EST
 
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By Steven Zeitchik

NEW YORK (Hollywood Reporter) - After a 10-year directing hiatus, Francis Ford Coppola recently returned to theaters as a writer-director-producer with "Youth Without Youth," based on the Mircea Eliade novella about aging, identity and language. Next, he'll start shooting "Tetro" in Argentina.

THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER: "YOUTH WITHOUT YOUTH" IS NOT ONLY

THE FIRST MOVIE YOU'VE DIRECTED IN 10 YEARS -- IT MAY ALSO BE

ONE OF THE MOST AMBITIOUS EFFORTS IN YOUR CAREER. WHY DID YOU

CHOOSE THIS AS YOUR COMEBACK FILM?

Francis Ford Coppola: People ask me, "Was reading the (the Eliade novella) like getting hit by lightning, and did it make (you) into a filmmaker again?" The truth is the bolt of lightning that hit me was (1972's) "The Godfather." That changed my life, because I was 29, but it gave me the career of an older filmmaker. Even then I tried to take on more risky projects, but having become wealthy with my other businesses (as a successful wine producer and hotelier), I've been given the chance to be the filmmaker I wanted to be when I was 18 and saw all these great movies from (Michelangelo) Antonioni and (Ingmar) Bergman and (Akira) Kurosawa.

THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER: THIS MOVIE HAS A EUROPEAN FEEL THAT

HEARKENS BACK TO MANY OF THOSE FILMMAKERS. WHY DO YOU THINK   Continued...

 
<p>Francis Ford Coppola sits in his vineyard in Rutherford, California, December 13, 2007. After a 10-year directing hiatus, Coppola recently returned to cinemas as a writer-director-producer with "Youth Without Youth," based on the Mircea Eliade novella about aging, identity and language. REUTERS/Kimberly White</p>