Director Francis Ford Coppola ‘Embarrassed’ by Boris Johnson’s Brexit Stance

American film director, producer, and screenwriter, Francis Ford Coppola attends a press conference before receiving the Stockholm Lifetime Achievement Award during the Stockholm Film Festival on November 9, 2016 in Stockholm. / AFP / JONATHAN NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty

Left-wing Hollywood filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola is “embarrassed” by Boris Johnson’s love for his bloody 1972 Oscar-winning film The Godfather, comparing the UK prime minister to Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein and Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi.

Asked by the Daily Mail during his successful leadership challenge in July what his favourite piece of filmmaking was, Johnson replied without hesitation, “the multiple retribution scene in The Godfather.”

The comment became a self-fulfilling prophecy after Johnson expelled 21 of his own MPs in a remarkable bout of political bloodletting — including Winston Churchill’s grandson Nicholas Soames — from the Conservative party for straying from his Brexit stance.

Coppola wants Britain to stay in the E.U. and told London’s Financial News on Friday Brexit is a disaster more reminiscent of the 1979 war film Apocalypse Now.

He also compared the prime minister to Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein and Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi.

Coppola told the website he was “incompetent… to offer opinion on political matters,” before wading anyway, saying he felt “some embarrassment that The Godfather seems to be the favorite film of modern history’s most brutal figures, including Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gadhafi and others.”

But he added: “I feel badly that scenes in a gangster film might inspire any activity in the real world…. Or [provide] encouragement to someone I see is about to bring the beloved United Kingdom to ruin.

“I love the United Kingdom and its many contributions to humanity, ranging from our beautiful language and Newtonian physics to penicillin.

“And [I] am horrified that it would even consider doing such a foolish thing as leaving the European Union.”

Johnson has vowed to deliver a “do or die” Brexit on October 31 even if he fails to agree a negotiation withdrawal deal with Brussels.

The UK parliament has ordered him to seek a deadline extension if he does not get a deal, something that Johnson has refused to do.

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