The Godfather 50th Anniversary limited theatrical release is set for February

Paramount Pictures has announced a cinematic experience that you won’t be able to refuse. Beginning on February 25, 2022, The Godfather will return to theaters for The Godfather 50th Anniversary celebration. This special presentation of Francis Ford Coppola’s cinematic masterpiece will be presented exclusively in Dolby Cinema at AMC Theatres in the United States, as well as in international territories around the world.

Additionally, all three films in the epic trilogy have been meticulously restored under the direction of Coppola and will be made available on 4K Ultra HD for the first time on March 22, 2022.

“I am very proud of The Godfather, which certainly defined the first third of my creative life,” said Francis Ford Coppola.  “With this 50th-anniversary tribute, I’m especially proud Mario Puzo’s THE GODFATHER, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone is included, as it captures Mario and my original vision in definitively concluding our epic trilogy. It’s also gratifying to celebrate this milestone with Paramount alongside the wonderful fans who’ve loved it for decades, younger generations who still find it relevant today, and those who will discover it for the first time.”

The Godfather 50th Anniversary, Marlon Brando, Francis Ford Coppola

Per Paramount’s official press release for The Godfather 50th Anniversary event:

Coppola’s masterful film adaptation of Mario Puzo’s novel chronicles the rise and fall of the Corleone family and the film trilogy is rightfully viewed as one of the greatest in cinematic history.  In preparation for the 50th anniversary of the first film’s original release on March 24, 1972, Paramount and Coppola’s production company American Zoetrope undertook a painstaking restoration of all three films over three years.

Every effort was made to create the finest possible presentation for today’s audiences who can watch the films using technology that has advanced dramatically since 2007 when the last restoration was completed by eminent film historian and preservationist Robert Harris.  Using that work as a blueprint, the team spent thousands of hours to ensure that every frame was evaluated to create the most pristine presentation while remaining true to the original look and feel of the films.

“We felt privileged to restore these films and a little in awe every day we worked on them,” said Andrea Kalas, senior vice president, Paramount Archives.  “We were able to witness first-hand how the brilliant cinematography, score, production design, costume design, editing, performances, and, of course, screenwriting and direction became famously more than the sum of their parts.  It was our commitment to honor all of the filmmakers’ exceptional work.”

Part of the effort to restore The Godfather trilogy involved over 300 cartons of film being investigated to find the best possible resolution for every frame of all three films. By that same token, over 4,000 hours were dedicated to repairing films stains, tears, and other anomalies in the negatives. Over 1,000 hours were spent on meticulous color correction to ensure the high dynamic range tools were respectful of the original vision of Coppola and cinematographer Gordon Willis. On the audio end of the spectrum, the 5.1 audio was approved by Walter Murch in 2007, with the original mono tracks on The Godfather and The Godfather: Part II being stored. There’s never been so much care taken for presenting the Godfather trilogy to fans who celebrate the series to this day.

Source: Paramount Pictures

About the Author

Born and raised in New York, then immigrated to Canada, Steve Seigh has been a editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. He started with Ink & Pixel, a column celebrating the magic and evolution of animation, before launching the companion YouTube series Animation Movies Revisited. He's also the host of the Talking Comics Podcast, a personality-driven audio show focusing on comic books, film, music, and more. You'll rarely catch him without headphones on his head and pancakes on his breath.