Connie Corleone

Connie Corleone
Connie Corleone
Connie corleone.jpg
Connie Corleone portrayed by Talia Shire in The Godfather Part III
First appearance The Godfather
Last appearance The Godfather's Revenge
Created by Mario Puzo
Portrayed by Talia Shire
Gender Female
Family Corleone family

Carlo Rizzi (deceased; 1945-1955)

  • Unnamed 2nd Husband (divorced)
  • Unnamed 3rd Husband (divorced)
Religion Roman Catholicism

Constanzia "Connie" Corleone (previously Constanzia Corleone-Rizzi), is a fictional character from The Godfather by Mario Puzo. In the films, Connie is portrayed by Talia Shire, the sister of director Francis Ford Coppola.


In the novel and first film

Connie is the youngest child, and only daughter, of Don Vito Corleone and Carmela Corleone. She is the sister of Sonny, Fredo and Michael Corleone. In The Godfather, she marries Carlo Rizzi, a small-time hood from Nevada and a friend of Sonny's. This choice (and the fact that Carlo is of Northern Italian descent) greatly displeases her father, who only agrees to the marriage on the condition that they hold an old-style Sicilian wedding.[1] She has two sons by Carlo: Victor and Michael Francis. A brief glimpse in Mama Corleone's funeral scene is the only time that Victor appears in the trilogy.

Carlo — whom Puzo characterizes as "a punk sore at the world" — periodically abuses and cheats on Connie. She complains to her parents, but her father coldly refuses to help, presumably to punish Connie. In truth, Vito is very upset at how Connie is being treated, but Italian tradition forbids a father — even one as powerful as Vito — from interfering in his daughter's marriage. However, her brothers grow to resent Carlo for his mistreatment of their sister, and Sonny has to be restrained from attacking Carlo.

One day Carlo gives Connie a particularly severe beating. Sonny gets wind of it when visiting Connie, finding her in tears and covered in bruises. Sonny finds Carlo hanging out in the street, chases him and mercilessly beats him up in front of a large group of people. Sonny threatens to kill Carlo if he ever harms Connie again, kicks him into the street, and leaves the scene. Carlo then schemes with her brother's and father's rivals, Philip Tattaglia and Emilio Barzini, to have Sonny killed. As part of the plan, Carlo once again beats Connie badly, this time in order to entice Sonny out for the ambush. Connie calls Sonny in a state of terror. Driven almost blind by rage, Sonny drives to Connie's house; while en route he is ambushed while paying a toll and is shot by Barzini's Tommy gun-wielding bodyguards.

Eight years later, Vito dies and Michael inherits the family. While Michael is standing as godfather to Michael Francis, the other heads of the Five Families are killed in a massive slaughter that re-establishes the Corleone family's reputation. Later that day, Michael avenges Sonny by having Carlo garroted by Peter Clemenza. Once Connie finds out what Michael has done (though apparently not knowing of Carlo's role in Sonny's death), she flies into a hysterical rage and denounces him in front of his wife, Kay; she resents Michael for some time afterward.

In the novel, Connie at first berates Michael for Carlo's death but a week later apologizes to her brother, claiming she didn't really mean it. She remarries less than a year later.

In the sequels

Her role in the films continues in The Godfather Part II. In the years since Carlo's death, she has had a series of meaningless affairs and marriages just to spite Michael, even borrowing money and abandoning her children temporarily. She returns to the family after their mother dies, and becomes more involved in the family business. She even intercedes on Fredo's behalf after Michael disowns him for conspiring with Corleone rival Hyman Roth, pleading with Michael to forgive him. She is presumably unaware that Michael had Fredo assassinated, as she later says that Fredo had drowned. After Michael and Kay divorce, Connie helps care for Michael's two children, Anthony and Mary. In a flashback at the end of the film, it is revealed that Sonny introduced her to Carlo in 1941.

In The Godfather Part III, Connie becomes a much more active member of Michael's inner circle, and is perhaps the closest he has to a true consigliere in the film. She is instrumental in persuading Michael to take their nephew Vincent Mancini-Corleone under his wing and groom him as the new Don. While Michael is recuperating in the hospital, she gives Vincent the go-ahead to kill Joey Zasa. She also (reluctantly) poisons Don Altobello, her godfather, in retaliation for his attempted assault on the family.

In other media

Connie appears as a supporting character in Mark Winegardner's sequel novels The Godfather Returns and The Godfather's Revenge.



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