New Version Of ‘The Godfather: Part III’ Coming This Year

Al Pacino in The Godfather: Part 3

Francis Ford Coppola will be releasing a new updated version of The Godfather: Part III, which will arrive later this year in time for the film’s 30th anniversary.


The director has spent a lot of time revisiting his old works recently, restoring Apocalypse Now, The Cotton Club, and Tucker: The Man and His Dream. Now, Paramount Pictures has announced that he is also restoring the third and final entry in The Godfather saga. This new version comes with a new name too: Mario Puzo’s THE GODFATHER, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone.


This restored version will have a limited theatrical release in December, followed by digital and disc. It sounds like Coppola did a lot of work on this one. With the aid of his production company American Zoetrope, he worked from a 4K scan of the original negative to restore every single frame of both the original The Godfather: Part III and the coda to create the best version possible. They worked long and hard to repair scratches and stains that could not be addressed at the time due to technology limitations. They also improved the 5:1 audio mix while they were at it. Coppola had the following to say on the project:


‘Mario Puzo’s THE GODFATHER, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone’ is an acknowledgement of Mario’s and my preferred title and our original intentions for what became ‘The Godfather: Part III’.

For this version of the finale, I created a new beginning and ending, and rearranged some scenes, shots, and music cues. With these changes and the restored footage and sound, to me, it is a more appropriate conclusion to ‘The Godfather’ and ‘The Godfather: Part II’ and I’m thankful to Jim Gianopulos and Paramount for allowing me to revisit it.


The coronavirus pandemic slowed the project down, but Coppola, American Zoetrope, and Paramount were able to complete the restoration remotely. “Mr. Coppola oversaw every aspect of the restoration while working on the new edit, ensuring that the film not only looks and sounds pristine, but also meets his personal standards and directorial vision,” said Andrea Kalas, Senior Vice President of Paramount Archives.


The third entry in The Godfather franchise is typically the least revered, so it will be interesting to see what Coppola manages to bring to the story. If so, then perhaps those who were disappointed by the original release will have a change of heart when the coda releases this December.


The Godfather films are an adaption of Mario Puzo’s original novels chronicling the rise and fall of the Corleone family. The story follows Michael Corleone (Al Pacino) as he seeks to separate his family from a life of crime and find the successor to his empire. At least the first two films are considered to be two of the best films in cinematic history.