History Uncovered

Episode 41 - The Real-Life Gangsters Behind Don Corleone

April 29, 2022

When The Godfather premiered in 1972, its depiction of the American Mafia both stunned and fascinated audiences who’d never seen anything quite like it ever before. A commercial and critical smash, the film went on to win three Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Actor for Marlon Brando, who played the film's iconic mob boss, Don Vito Corleone. But what most audiences probably didn’t realize at the time was that Don Corleone was much more than just a fictional creation. 

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