Francis Ford Coppola (/ˈkɒpələ/, Italian: [ˈkɔppola]; born April 7, 1939) is an American film director, producer, screenwriter, film composer, and vintner. He was a central figure in the New Hollywood filmmaking movement of the 1960s and 1970s. He is widely considered to be one of the greatest filmmakers of all time.
After directing The Rain People in 1969, Coppola co-wrote Patton (1970), earning the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay along with Edmund H. North. Coppola’s reputation as a filmmaker was cemented with the release of The Godfather (1972). The film revolutionized movie-making in the gangster genre, and was adored by the public and critics alike. The Godfather won three Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Actor, and Best Adapted Screenplay (shared with Mario Puzo).
The Godfather Part II, which followed in 1974, became the first sequel to win the Academy Award for Best Picture. Highly regarded by critics, the film brought Coppola three more Academy Awards: Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Director, and Best Picture, and made him the second director (after Billy Wilder) to be so honored three times for the same film. The Conversation, which Coppola directed, produced and wrote, was released that same year, winning the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival. His next film, Apocalypse Now (1979), which notoriously had a lengthy and strenuous production, was widely acclaimed for its vivid depiction of the Vietnam War. The film won the Palme d’Or, making Coppola one of only eight filmmakers to have won that award twice.