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New Godfather Competition Bloodless

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Randon House decided it was time for a new Godfather novel, so it held a contest. Martha Stewart won – kidding:

    Mark Winegardner is joining the Corleone family business: He’s been selected to write the next “Godfather” novel.

    Winegardner, a fiction writer whose previous subjects include baseball, Cleveland and organized crime, was proclaimed the winner Friday of a contest to continue the saga of Mario Puzo’s fictional crime family.

    The decision, made by Random House and the Puzo literary estate, was announced on the “Today” show. “The Godfather Returns” is tentatively scheduled to be released in the fall of 2004.

    “There are many stories left to tell,” said Winegardner, 41, director of the creative writing program at Florida State University. [AP]

There are many stories left to tell? Nice quote, dildo. At least he didn’t say he was going to Disneyland.

    Winegardner’s books include the baseball novel “Prophet of the Sandlots” and “Crooked River Burning,” a class conscious story set in Cleveland. Like Puzo, he has a knack for writing about crime. Unlike Puzo, he is not Italian.

    “I am, however, German-Irish like (Corleone consigliere) Tom Hagen, and he did just fine in this world,” Winegardner said.

    Finalists included James Carlos Blake, author of several violent thrillers set in the West, and Vince Patrick, whose novel, “The Pope of Greenwich Village,” was adapted into an acclaimed movie starring Eric Roberts and Mickey Rourke.

    “We were looking for an original writer who would bring his own vision to Mario Puzo’s mythic characters, just as Francis Ford Coppola did in the films,” Karp said. “He’s got a big heart, and that’s important when you have to kill a lot of characters.”

I loved The Godfather, but I liked The Pope of Greenwich Village even more – probably the last time I liked either Mickey Rourke or Eric Roberts in a movie, also.

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