Sofia Coppola is the daughter of director Francis Ford Coppola, sister of Roman Coppola, niece of Talia Shire and a cousin of Nicolas Cage, Jason Schwartzman and Robert Schwartzman. She attended Mills College and the California Institute of the Arts.
Coppola's career in film began early, as she appeared as an infant or a child extra in several of her father's films. The best known of these anonymous roles is her appearance in The Godfather as the baby boy in the christening scene. She is also featured in Coppola's film The Outsider's in the scene where Matt Dillon, C. Thomas Howell, and Ralph Macchio are talking at the drive in before the famous burning church scene.
Anna (1987) was the first film in which she performed that was not associated with her father. However, her best known role is Mary Corleone in The Godfather Part III (1990), a role into which she was cast at the last minute after Winona Ryder fell ill. This heavily criticized performance (for which she received the award of "Worst New Star" in the 1990 Golden Raspberry Awards) effectively ended her acting career, except for an appearance in the independent film Inside Monkey Zetterland (1992), and a bit part in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (1999). She played a gymnast in the video for "Elektrobank" by the Chemical Brothers, directed by her then-husband Spike Jonze.
Coppola is now better known as a successful film director. Her first three films were Lick the Star (1996), The Virgin Suicides (1999) and Lost in Translation (2003). Lost in Translation won the Academy Award for original screenplay and three Golden Globe Awards including Best Picture. With her Oscar nomination for Best Director (for Lost in Translation), Coppola became only the third woman (and the first American woman) to receive an Oscar nomination for film direction.
Coppola's forthcoming film is the biopic Marie-Antoinette, adapted from the biography by British historian Lady Antonia Fraser. Kirsten Dunst plays the title role and Coppola cousin Jason Schwartzman plays Antoinette's husband, King Louis XVI. It debuted at the Cannes Film Festival, where it was booed and given a chilly reception by critics.
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