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Book Review: 'The Godfather Legacy'

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In some ways, this tribute stinks like Don Corleone’s olive-oil business: Fireside, which is owned by Paramount, published it in tandem with the Godfather theatrical reissue and video rerelease, the latter advertised right on the book’s last page. Clearly, studio powers also endorsed a back-cover blurb that breezily ranks even the arthritic Godfather Part III among ”the most compelling films in Hollywood history.” But author Lebo is a superb investigator of all the infighting and rewriting that went into the first of the trilogy, debunking long-believed lore, such as Al Pacino’s assertions that he was as good as fired in Godfather‘s early weeks. Served up with 125 pictures that sizzle even in black and white, Legacy makes a nourishing meal out of a recipe for tripe. A-