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Coppola blasts Hollywood veterans

Published: Friday, October 19, 2007, 9:03 [IST]

Friday, October 19, 2007

New York (ANI): Film director Francis Ford Coppola has criticised Robert De Niro, Jack Nicholson and Al Pacino for changing the ambition they showed while beginning their acting careers. The filmmaker, who directed Pacino in 'The Godfather" and Pacino and De Niro in 'Godfather II", said that they have set their minds on money, even though the actors have already gotten richer.

"I met both Pacino and De Niro when they were really on the come. They were young and insecure. Now Pacino is very rich, maybe because he never spends any money; he just puts it in his mattress. De Niro was deeply inspired by (Coppola's studio American) Zoetrope and created an empire and is wealthy and powerful," the New York Daily News quoted Coppola as telling GQ magazine.

"Nicholson was — when I met him and worked with him — he was always kind of a joker. He's got a little bit of a mean streak. He's intelligent, always wired in with the big guys and the big bosses of the studios," he added. The director also said that Pacino used to be very keen on doing theatre, but he of late did not seem to be having the same interest.

"I don't know what any of them want anymore. I don't know that they want the same things. Pacino always wanted to do theatre ... (He) will say, 'Oh, I was raised next to a furnace in New York, and I'm never going to go to L.A.,' but they all live off the fat of the land," Coppola said. He has also revealed that he is coming out with an art film, 'Youth Without Youth", for the first time in 10 years. Coppola has spent last decade mostly by producing daughter Sofia 's pictures. He also made De Niro's 'The Good Shepherd" last year.

"I think if there was a role that De Niro was hungry for, he would come after it. I don't think Jack would. Jack has money and influence and girls, and I think he's a little bit like (Marlon) Brando, except Brando went through some tough times. I guess they don't want to do it anymore," he said.

"You know, even in those days, after 'The Godfather,' I didn't feel that those actors were ready to say, 'Let's do something else really ambitious.' A guy like (38-year-old "Before Night Falls" star) Javier Bardem is excited to do something good: 'Let me do this' or 'I'll put stuff in my mouth, change my appearance.' I don't feel that kind of passion to do a role and be great coming from those guys, because if it was there, they would do it," he added. None of the actors was available for comment.

Topics: jack nicholson, robert de niro, al pacino, francis ford coppola, the godfather
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