Whether you're in the small towns of Sicily, the canals of Venice, or the bustling streets of Rome, you won't have issues finding filming sites in Italy's most popular tourist draws. Let's go over a few essential tips to help you on your tour of Italy's finest filming destinations.
The Ultimate Godfather Tour Guide
"In Sicily, Women Are More Dangerous Than Shotguns:" The Godfather: Part II LocationsIt doesn't get more Italian than The Godfather. While the majority of these films were shot in the USA, a significant portion of The Godfather: Part II took place in Corleone, Sicily, which was the birthplace of the film's Don Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando).
Many tourists who want to see The Godfather filming locations make the mistake of traveling to the city of Corleone. Soon after arriving in Corleone, however, you'll discover that director Francis Ford Coppola actually used other Sicilian cities as his filming locations. Apparently, Corleone was far too industrialized in the 70s and didn't fit the film's historical era.
Luckily, the Sicilian town of Savoca—where most of the filming took place—is only a three-hour's drive from Corleone. Amazingly, Savoca's Bar Vitelli, where Michael Corleone learns the name of his future wife Apollonia, is still open. Inside this bar you'll find memorabilia from that famous shoot, and on a terrace nearby you'll find a unique statue dedicated to Coppola. The exact address of Bar Vitelli is Piazza Fossia, 7.
After the Bar Vitelli, the most popular Godfather location in Savoca is the Church of Saint Lucia (Italian: Chiesa di Santa Lucia). As you might've already guessed, this is the church in which Michael and Apollonia were married. You can actually walk the same path from the church to Bar Vitelli as depicted in the movie.
If you have extra time, consider exploring the narrow streets of nearby Forza d'Argò. Although not as famous as Savoca, a few scenes in all three Godfather films were filmed in this tiny village. The most recognizable Godfatherattraction in Forza d'Argò is the main church, which is known as the Church of Santa Maria Assunta.
Oh, and don't forget to order a tangy granita di limoni while in the Bar Vitelli! According to employees who were present at the shooting of The Godfather: Part II, Coppola often ordered this refreshing lemon drink often during filming.
For The Dedicated Film Fans: The Palermo TheatreWhen most people say they are Godfather fans, they typically only mean they like the first two films. Indeed, there are still many heated debates online over whether The Godfather: Part III should even be considered a Godfather film.
For those who want the full Godfather experience, however, it's important to make a stop in the Sicilian city of Palermo. Here you'll find the grand Teatro Massimo, which was featured prominently in the tragic finale of The Godfather: Part III.
Even if you have no interest in paying homage to the third Godfather film, Palermo has many impressive architectural treasures well worth your time.
Three More Iconic Italian Filming SitesFor those who aren't traveling to Sicily (or who just don't care about The Godfather) there are plenty of other filming destinations throughout Italy. Here are three fantastic locations to add to your Italian film journey.
A Night Time Swim In An Immortal Attraction: The Trevi Fountain
Even people who've never watched a Fellini film probably know the famous scene where Anita Ekberg and Marcello Mastroianni jump into Rome's Trevi Fountain. Ever since the release of the film La Dolce Vita, Trevi Fountain's popularity with tourists has become equal with the Vatican and the Colosseum.
As you could imagine, the Trevi Fountain isn't exactly a "hidden attraction." If you're in Rome for the first-time, however, you can't pass it by. Here are a few travel tips to help you have as enjoyable an experience at Trevi Fountain as possible:
- For your best chance of avoiding huge crowds, visit the Trevi Fountain early in the morning or late at night.