Not The Godfather or Apocalypse Now, Francis Ford Coppola Says His Best Movie is Yet to Come

The film has been 40 years in he making, juicing out a significant investment from Francis Coppola's personal wealth.

the godfather, apocalypse

SUMMARY

  • Francis Ford Coppola is one of Hollywood's most influential directors, who has produced films like The Godfather and Apocalypse Now.
  • Coppola considers his upcoming film, Megalopolis, his best work, matching Roman Republic aesthetics to a modern American landscape.
  • The film, described as 'a fable' might be difficult to market, given the aesthetic lending itself more to science fiction and fantasy rather than the intended contemporary look that the film wishes to boast.
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Francis Ford Coppola is arguably one of the greatest directors in the industry. Having delivered classics that have shaped Hollywood like The Godfather and Apocalypse Now, the director has made a lot of films that have defined generations of Hollywood filmmaking. However, the director has gone on record to say that his best film is yet to come, talking about his upcoming masterpiece, set to premiere at Cannes this month.

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A still from The Godfather
A still from The Godfather

Francis Ford Coppola has spent the last 40 years coming up with and producing his latest masterpiece, Megalopolis. The director has regarded it as the best project that he has had the privilege to preside over, which is a bold statement given the director’s filmography and tenure in Hollywood.

Work on the Megalopolis screenplay first started in the 1980s

A still of Adam Driver and Nathalie Emmanuel from Megalopolis
A still from Megalopolis | Vanity Fair

The original idea for the film was allegedly conceived in the 1980s but was subject to numerous delays and cancelations. However, come 2019, Francis Ford Coppola, would invest his own money (a whopping $120 million) to get the project off the ground.

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The film is described as a ‘A Fable’ by its own subtitle, which fuses modern American imagery with concepts, aesthetics, and attitudes of the Roman Republic, to weave the tale of loyalty, love, and ambition. The film stars Adam Driver, Giancarlo Esposito, Nathalie Emmanuel, and Laurence Fishburne among others. Variety reported that the film is the one project that Coppola is most proud of, attributing this quote to the director:

“Our new film ‘Megalopolis’ is the best work I’ve ever had the privilege to preside over,”

The film has also released an official teaser, one that depicts surreal imagery of moving statues and walling skies in a visually stunning landscape, with senators and socialites lounging in poses ripped right of classical art, musing about how an empire falls. The teaser depicts a modern, urban, American landscape, that seems to be trying to recover from a disaster, while fundamentally good people try to navigate opposing and divisive views.

Megalopolis might be a difficult film to market for Francis Ford Coppola

A still of Adam Driver from Francis Ford Coppola's Megalopolis
A still from the Megalopolis teaser

Megalopolis is set in the present but has an aesthetic that sets it apart. While the film is subtitled ‘A Fable’, the film is not defined as a science fiction or fantasy story. The official synopsis of the film reads:

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“Megalopolis’ is a Roman Epic fable set in an imagined Modern America. The City of New Rome must change, causing conflict between Cesar Catilina (Adam Driver), a genius artist who seeks to leap into a utopian, idealistic future, and his opposition, Mayor Franklyn Cicero (Giancarlo Esposito), who remains committed to a regressive status quo, perpetuating greed, special interests, and partisan warfare. Torn between them is socialite Julia Cicero (Nathalie Emmanuel), the mayor’s daughter, whose love for Cesar has divided her loyalties, forcing her to discover what she truly believes humanity deserves.”

While the theme of the story is pretty straightforward, the aesthetics and dialogue of the film betray little about the genre of the movie. This might not make the film very marketable beyond the name of the director attached to the project.

This could also lead to an unimpressed general audience, which might not give the movie a chance in theatres, as is often the case with complex, critically acclaimed films. While there is a huge possibility that the film will be an Oscar contender, it might not be something that the mainstream audience finds interest in.

Megalopolis will premiere at Cannes on May 16, 2024

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Written by Anuraag Chatterjee

Articles Published: 625

Anuraag Chatterjee, Web Content Writer
With a passion for writing fiction and non fiction content, Anuraag is a Media Science graduate with 2 year's experience with Marketing and Content, with 3 published poetry anthologies. Anuraag holds a Bacherlor's degree in Arts with a focus on Communication and Media Studies.