From Paramount Television Studios, The Offer is based on Oscar-winning producer Albert S. Ruddy’s extraordinary, never-before-seen experiences of making The Godfather. The drama limited series is created and written by Oscar and Emmy-nominated writer Michael Tolkin (Escape at Dannemora, The Player) and written and executive produced by Nikki Toscano (Hunters), who serves as showrunner. Alongside Tolkin and Toscano, two-time Oscar-winner Albert S. Ruddy (Million Dollar Baby, Hogan’s Heroes), Miles Teller, Russell Rothberg, Dexter Fletcher, and Leslie Greif serve as executive producers. Dexter Fletcher (Rocketman) also directed the first two episodes of the series.
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The Offer stars Miles Teller as Albert S. Ruddy, Matthew Goode as legendary producer Robert Evans, Juno Temple as agent Bettye McCartt, Giovanni Ribisi as real-life crime boss Joe Colombo, Dan Fogler as director Francis Ford Coppola, Burn Gorman as industrialist Charles Bluhdorn, Colin Hanks as business tycoon Barry Lapidus, Nora Arnezeder as Francoise Glazer, and Patrick Gallo as author Mario Puzo. Nikki Toscano will serve as showrunner, while Dexter Fletcher will direct the first block of the series. The official synopsis for The Offer reads, “A biographical drama miniseries about the development and production of Francis Ford Coppola’s landmark New York City gangster film The Godfather (1972) for Paramount Pictures. The series will also feature a few interpretations of some of the all-star cast of The Godfather, including Justin Chambers as Marlon Brando, Frank John Hughes as Frank Sinatra, Anthony Ippolito as Al Pacino, and Damian Conrad-Davis as James Caan.”
Actor Miles Teller had ended up replacing Armie Hammer in the lead role for the series. Hammer exited the series in January 2021 amid allegations of sexual misconduct by several women. Filming for the series first began back in July 2021 and ran into some “production trouble” of its own due to positive COVID-19 tests, as well as the ongoing labor dispute in Château Marmont. “What sealed it for me was when Al said, ‘Every day of making The Godfather was the worst day in my life,’ and that told me we had a show,” The Offer creator Michael Tolkin (Escape at Dannemora) told Vanity Fair in revealing the first look. “For every character in the film, getting it made or stopping it from being made was at the core of their actions, and it was a matter of life and death to them.”
The Godfather is a 1972 American epic crime film directed by Francis Ford Coppola, who co-wrote the screenplay with Mario Puzo, based on Puzo’s best-selling 1969 novel of the same name. The film stars Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Richard Castellano, Robert Duvall, Sterling Hayden, John Marley, Richard Conte, and Diane Keaton. It is the first installment in The Godfather trilogy. The story, spanning from 1945 to 1955, chronicles the Corleone family under patriarch Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando), focusing on the transformation of his youngest son, Michael Corleone (Al Pacino), from reluctant family outsider to ruthless mafia boss. Paramount Pictures had obtained the rights to the novel for a total of $80,000.
Episode 101: A Seat at the Table
Al Ruddy gets the job of producing an adaptation of the bestselling novel The Godfather for Paramount Pictures, but rising crime boss Joe Colombo has a different fate planned for the film. With the first episode running for a total of 68 minutes, it serves as an introduction to several of the show’s key characters. Ruddy gets his foot in the door to work in Hollywood, Evans eventually hires Ruddy on his first project with Paramount, and Puzo is convinced to begin writing The Godfather novel. The series premiere seems to fly through several scenes at an expedited rate, with little to no indication of how much time has passed on in the story. As Puzo’s The Godfather novel becomes an instant hit, mafia antagonist Joe Colombo takes offense to the novel as well as the film’s production.
Episode 102: Warning Shots
Al Ruddy and Bettye McCartt face growing opposition to The Godfather as Francis Ford Coppola and Mario Puzo write the script. Robert Evans clashes with Barry Lapidus over the creative direction of Paramount. As production for The Godfather film continues, more problems begin to pop up but somehow becomes easily solved as if they weren’t even serious issues at all. Dan Fogler’s performance as Francis Ford Coppola definitely doesn’t go unnoticed, while Nora Arnezeder shines bright with her presence in every scene as Francoise Glazer. Frank John Hughes appears as a much younger version of Frank Sinatra, who is originally objected to the character of Johnny Fontane, while Anthony Ippolito plays Al Pacino.
Episode 103: Fade In
Pressure mounts over the delivery of the script when Ruddy has a sit down with Colombo. Evans gets into hot water with Charlie Bluhdorn, who’s interested in Bettye. By the time the third episode arrives, it seems that the main conflict between Ruddy and Colombo has already been solved.
While the performance from the cast continues to be phenomenal, the story overall seems to overstretch which will make you think about what’s ahead in the remaining seven episodes. Going from one scene to the next in the opening episodes takes too long for an unnecessary amount of time. However, with the series only premiering its three episodes so far, the story being told in the upcoming seven episodes could either redeem itself or prove that there may be too many subplots going on all at once. Having a total of 10 episodes, The Offer already has a runtime longer than the entire The Godfather trilogy itself. The limited series seems to be way too long for a show that’s only based on one film.
The Offer also takes forever to get to its interesting parts of the narrative. Looking at the pilot for example, the majority of the episode seemed to only focus on Ruddy working for a computer company before he even got into the film industry. While the series is based on the development of The Godfather, it sometimes feels like the focus is more fixed on Ruddy’s personal life and career. For the fans that watch The Offer hoping that The Godfather is the sole plot in the limited series, unfortunately this is not the case. The main plot of The Offer cycles like so, whenever a problem arises with production, the solution comes swooping in out of nowhere before that same episode comes to an end, making it look extremely easy too.
The first three episodes of The Offer are currently available to stream on Paramount+. Following the series premiere, all-new episodes will arrive weekly on Thursdays. The Offer is a limited series that will consist of 10 total episodes. The series is exclusively available to Paramount+ subscribers in Canada, the United States, Latin America, the Nordics, and Australia. The Godfather was nominated for an astounding eleven Academy Awards and is widely regarded as one of the greatest films ever made.
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About The Author
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Alexander Navarro has been writing for MovieWeb for over a year. He is currently serving in the United States Army for the past 9 years. Alexander is also attached as a screenwriter in an upcoming unannounced project, and currently resides in Austin, TX.
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