April 25 marks 81 years of outstanding Hollywood actor, filmmaker and producer Al Pacino. World renown in the 1970s. he won the crime drama The Godfather, but he received his first and only Oscar much later, in 1992, as the best actor in the film The Smell of a Woman. This work became significant for him not only because he received an award for it. It marked the beginning of a new stage in his life, because before that he had not filmed for almost 10 years and was in a state of prolonged depression. What led Al Pacino to this milestone, and what changed in his life after that - further in the review.
Probably, if Alfredo James Pacino had not become an actor, he probably would have been one of those who were discussed in "The Godfather". He was born and raised in a poor family of immigrants from Italy, in a disadvantaged neighborhood in New York. As a teenager, he began to smoke and drink alcohol, often became the instigator of fights, and he stole his first bicycle. Fortunately, his hobby for theater and cinema was a lifesaver for him. Al Pacino graduated from Lee Strasberg's acting studio and began performing on the stage and acting in films. This was not the last time that art became his salvation.
Before The Godfather, Al Pacino was a little-known and not very successful actor. Much more serious rivals - Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty - claimed the role of Michael Corleone, but when Francis Ford Coppola first saw the face of Al Pacino in the frame, he decided that no one would play the role better. The producers of the crime drama doubted the correctness of this choice - they called Al Pacino "an ugly and unpresentable short man." But the director insisted on his own. And he was not mistaken - the film was a phenomenal success, and the actor himself immediately turned into a star of the first magnitude. Francis Coppola said after the premiere: "".
The actor's teacher, Lee Strasberg, said that Al Pacino is not an actor of performance, but an experience, who does not so much play his characters as become them. It really was like that. He admitted that it took him several months to stop feeling like Michael Corleone and get used to other images. For his role in The Godfather, he was nominated for an Oscar, but did not appear at the ceremony - it seemed to him offensive that he got into the category of Best Supporting Actor, because his role in the film was key. And the prize itself in 1972 did not go to him. He became a nominee several more times in the 1970s, but luck passed him by for a long time.
Al Pacino was very selective in his choice of roles, and refused many films himself. In the 1980s. he disappeared from the screens for a long time. As it turned out later, at this time he was going through a crisis and drank heavily. His binges lasted for weeks, but then the actor could not stop. He said: "".
The actor could not get rid of the addiction on his own, he had to undergo a course of treatment in a specialized clinic. There he recovered not only from drunkenness, but also from smoking (before that he smoked 2 packs a day). Salvation Al Pacino found again in art. In 1985, he made the film Shame on the District, where he appeared as he was at the time. He decided to release this bitter confession on screens only in 1989, when he finally found the strength to return to cinema.
His return was triumphant. In 1992, he starred in the drama Scent of a Woman, shooting in which helped him finally say goodbye to depression and brought the long-awaited recognition: he finally won an Oscar for Best Actor. In working on the role of the blind Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slide, Al Pacino showed all his inherent obsession with the profession. In Hollywood, there were legends about his ability to work. He slept 4 hours a day, giving the rest of the time to filming and rehearsals, and suppressed fatigue with the help of coffee, which he drank in such quantities that he was nicknamed Al Cappuccino.
Playing police, he asked for raids to real law enforcement officers, posing as a journalist, got a job as a freelance reporter for one of the newspapers. And in order to truthfully portray a blind person, he himself almost lost his sight. He went to a school for the blind, where he learned from them not to focus on anything, to look "past" everyone. And he did it so diligently that one day he fell down and injured his eye. The actor said: "".
He remained in character for a long time even after the cameras were turned off: he walked with a cane and did not look at the people who were talking to him. Al Pacino was so accustomed to the role that he really saw little in front of him. The episode in which he stumbles on the street over a trash can and falls down was not in the script - the actor really did not notice the obstacle in front of him and fell. They decided to keep this scene in the film.
On the set he was called the Devil - but not for his bad character, as in his youth, but for his incredibly talented acting. And Pacino answered: "". Everyone who saw him in this film was amazed that the actor did not seem to play again, but turned his own fate inside out, without fear, confessing his own sins - long years of drunkenness.
His character in this film was obsessed with women, and to create such an image, in this case, the actor did not need any additional preparation. He was never married, but there were legends about his novels. The first beauties of Hollywood became his friends, but none of them managed to stay with him for a long time. Even the birth of children was not a reason for an official marriage. 2 years ago, there were reports in the media that the actor had a new darling, who was almost 40 years younger than him.
In the film "The Smell of a Woman" his hero utters the following remark: "".
His acquaintances say that he is a rather closed person who prefers to live a recluse and let only a few into his home and his soul: What even the most dedicated fans don't know about Al Pacino.