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Mario Puzo

Mario Puzo

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Also Known As: Died: July 2, 1999
Born: October 15, 1920 Cause of Death: heart failure and complications from diabetes
Birth Place: New York City, New York, USA Profession: Writer ...
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MILESTONES

:
Raised in Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of New York City; one of seven children
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Worked as a switchboard attendant for NY Central Railroad
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Served in Army during World War II; assigned to the military government of captured French towns; though never firing a shot, earned five battlefield stars for coming under fire
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Worked as a government clerk
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Wrote fiction and non-fiction for magazines like TRUE ACTION and MALE
1955:
Published first novel "Dark Arena", based on his World War II experiences in Europe
1964:
Second novel, "The Fortunate Pilgrim", appeared; considered by Puzo his finest work
:
Received $5K advance from Putnam for proposed Mafia novel
1969:
Came back from European vacation to find that the bidding for "The Godfather" paperback rights had reached $415,000
1972:
Feature film version of "The Godfather" released; would win Oscars for Best Picture, Best Actor (Marlon Brando) and Best Screenplay (for Puzo and director Francis Ford Coppola)
1974:
Shared a second Best Screenplay Oscar with Francis Ford Coppala for "The Godfather, Part II"
1978:
Collaborated with Robert Benton, David Newman and Leslie Newman to write "Superman"; same team would script "Superman II" (1980)
1978:
Paperback rights to "Fools Die" sold for then-astonishing $2.5 million
1984:
Received $1 million to write a screenplay for "The Cotton Club"
1987:
Entrusted Michael Cimino to direct his film adaptation of his novel "The Sicilian"; it bombed egregiously
1988:
Miniseries "Marion Puzo's the Fortunate Pilgrim", based on his 1964 novel, appeared on NBC
1990:
Co-wrote "The Godfather, Part III", considered the weakest of the three films
1991:
Nearly died of a heart attack in Las Vegas, NV; underwent quadruple-bypass surgery at Cedars-Sinai in L.A.
:
Received $1.3 million advance for yet another Mafia novel
1996:
Random House published comeback novel "The Last Don"
1997:
1964 novel "The Fortunate Pilgrim" re-released by Random House
1997:
CBS aired miniseries version of "The Last Don"; network paid $2.1 million, outbidding Coppola for rights

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