The Coppola family is so entrenched in the film industry that sometimes viewers might not be aware they are watching a movie that has a wing of the family staring, directing, writing, or doing other production-related tasks on it. The most well-known Coppolas are Francis Ford Coppola and Sofia Coppola. However, Nicolas Cage, Talia Shire, and Jason Schwartzman are also a part of this illustrious family (just to name a few).
The body of work that this group has created over the years is astounding. Films like Lost in Translation, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Moonstruck, and Patton, just to name a few that didn’t make the list below. So what did make the list? Let’s take a look at the 10 highest-grossing Coppola family movies of all time.
10 The Godfather III: $136 Million
While the third installment of Francis Ford Coppola’s Godfather films is universally acknowledged as the least favorite of the trilogy, it makes our list when the second film does not.
The Godfather Part II is often cited as being superior even to the first film, so it should at least earn an honorable mention, although it only made about half as much at the box office as The Godfather III did. The third film received mixed reviews, but it was still nominated for 7 Academy Awards and grossed 136 million.
9 Apocalypse Now: $150 Million
Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now is considered by many to be a masterpiece of modern film making. The film takes was inspired by Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness and the Vietnam War. Filming was plagued by bad weather, ruined sets, and issues that pushed production from a five-month schedule into over a year.
When the film finally came together it grossed over $150 million, and won a bevy of awards including the Palme d’Or, and was nominated for 8 Academy Awards.
8 Dracula: $215 Million
Francis Ford Coppola’s film Bram Stoker’s Dracula has been described as romantic, campy, eerie, and not to mention overblown. Coppola wanted lush costumes, which the film won an Oscar for, and used special effects like forced perspective, to create the skewed views that helped give the film its unique look.
The shining star of this film is definitely Gary Oldman’s performance as Dracula, who brings heart to one of the most notorious monsters of legend. As a period horror film, it’s impressive that Dracula grossed over $215 million.
7 Ghost Rider
An adaption of a Marvel Comics character, Ghost Rider was released in 2007. Nicolas Cage stars as the titular character/superhero who sells his soul in exchange for his father’s life. Things transpire and Cage becomes Ghost Rider, who can make people feel all the pain they’ve brought onto others.
The film was panned by critics and reviewers but that’s doesn’t always translate into problems at the box office. In this case, the film earned $228 million worldwide and even prompted a sequel.
6 Gone in 60 Seconds: $237 Million
Another Nicholas Cage movie, Gone in 60 Seconds is a remake of a 1974 film of the same name. Along with Cage, the film starred Angelina Jolie, Giovanni Ribisi, and Robert Duvall to name a few. Directed by action-expert Jerry Bruckheimer this 2000 release was widely criticized for poor acting but that didn't stop it from doing well.
The action scenes outweighed the negative feedback though and the film ended up grossing over $237 million dollars. Like the original, it has become something of a cult classic.
5 Face/Off: $246 Million
This 1997 film starring Nicolas Cage and John Travolta is about as ridiculous as the title. Spoiler alert (do we need spoiler alerts on a film that’s over 20 years old?) in the film the two main characters swap faces in a, ahem, highly experimental face transplant procedure.
It grossed $246 million worldwide and also went on to be nominated for an Academy Award for Sound Effects Editing, which is nothing to scoff at.
4 The Godfather: $286 Million
Even if you’ve never seen The Godfather, you likely know a quote or two from the film. Francis Ford Coppola’s movie is centered around a New York crime family based on the Mario Puzo book and stars Marlon Brando and Al Pacino. Release in 1972, this was the highest-grossing film released that year and went on to make over $286 million.
Coppola originally turned down the offer to direct the film but ended up taking the job when his studio ran into some financial troubles. It’s hard to think about The Godfather without thinking about Coppola and we can only imagine how different a film it would have been without his direction.
3 National Treasure: $347 Million
National Treasure is another Nicholas Cage vehicle, released during the holiday season in 2004. This movie is a romping action-adventure film meant for the whole family. National Treasure could be the film equivalent of junk food. It's a lot of fun but you're not going to walk out of the theater having taken away anything except for a good time.
This is one of those movies where you set aside your disbelief that the characters could possibly steal the Declaration of Independence and just go along for the ride. National Treasure pulled in a whopping $347 million and spawned a sequel.
2 The Rock: $335 Million
If there is any doubt of Nicholas Cage's box office pull, the entries on this list have to have obliterated those thoughts. The Rock, starring Cage, Sean Connery, and Ed Harris, is an action flick about a group of rogue Marines who take hostages and hole up on Alcatraz.
They threaten to blow up San Francisco unless they’re paid 100 million dollars (cue evil laugh). Raking in over $335 million, this film was considered a box office hit.
1 National Treasure: Book of Secrets: $457 Million
This sequel to National Treasure, also starring Nicholas Cage, continues the high-paced, ridiculous puzzle-solving fun of the first film. Reuniting much of the original cast and adding in a few new faces, this 2007 film made more than $100 million more than its predecessor. Pulling in a massive $457 million worldwide, this movie tops our list in moneymakers for the Coppola family.
While it might feel a little anticlimactic that this sequel ranks at number one on the list, there is no doubt of the power of the Coppolas in the film industry.