'Godfather' Prequel Slated for 2012: Why Mess With a Classic?

Linda Sharps
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Someone must have made Grand Central Publishing an offer they can't refuse, because the company has announced a return to the story that began in Mario Puzo’s classic novel The Godfather.

The Family Corleone is an authorized prequel that will be written by Ed Falco, an award-winning author and poet. Set in New York in the 1930s, it's reportedly based on an unproduced screenplay by Puzo.

I guess the only surprising news here is that it hasn't been done before. After all, The Godfather sold 20 million copies and was the basis for a movie you may have heard of with a very similar title. But extending a series after the creator's death—doesn't it just seem wrong? Sort of like how there were about 50 more V.C. Andrews' books after she died in 1986?

While Puzo died in 1999 and there have been two sequels since then (The Godfather’s Return and The Godfather’s Revenge, both by Mark Winegardner), the idea of a prequel makes me think the next step will be a new Godfather movie, which ... gah. You just know that's gonna suck. Star Wars, anyone?

An executive publisher of Grand Central, who is obviously totally unbiased, says that the novel “both honors the original, and stands on its own as a Godfather novel for a new generation of readers.”

Tony Puzo, Mario Puzo’s son and executor of the Puzo estate, also claims that The Family Corleone (which tells the story of how Vito Corleone rises in power to become the Don) will be “cherished by all Godfather fans.”

Well, I suppose we'll see—the book is scheduled for publication in June 2012. No word on the film rights yet, but what do you want to bet that's being negotiated right now?

What do you think about a Godfather prequel? Will you read it?



Image via Amazon

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