Honing his craft on the streets, clubs, and underground stages of Manhattan, Pacino’s rough and nakedly ambitious style jarred with the ‘clean cut’ Hollywood that preceded him.
His seething intensity and undisguised passion gave life to the leading man: hardened, formidable, and shrewd enough to explore the maelstrom of post-war America. Francis Ford Cappola saw this early, battling with Paramount to have the unknown Pacino cast as Michael Carleone.
The Godfather went on to become one of the finest films in cinematic history. Pacino himself rocketed to stardom; he is known best today as a luminary of the New Hollywood cinema movement, though fewer will know of his love affair with the stage. He is one of a handful of actors to win ‘The Triple Crown’: an Emmy, an Oscar, and a Tony — an achievement that cements his position as a true polymath of the craft.