Donal Donnelly

  1. Rod Taylor, Young Cassidy, 1965.    While director John Ford debated  Harris v O’Toole, to play Sean O’Casey, the  playwright recommended Donal Donnelly or Norman Rodway to play his early  days. Both had prestigious films in  their future. Donnelly was the cunning Vatican  Archbishop Gilday in The Godfather: Part III,1990.  Rodway was Hotspur in Orson Welles’ Chimes At Midnight, 1965. Fortunately,  O’Casey died in 1964 and never saw the mess – finished by director Jack Cardiff.
  2. Tommy Steele, Finian’s Rainbow, 1967.     Who do you get to play a leprechaun? An Irishman, if possible. It wasn’t for Coppola, who failed to get Donnelly and made do with a Cockney! (Francey then shot Fred Astaire  dancing without showing his feet).  Some 22 years later Coppola got Donnelly  as the Vatican’s corrupt Archbishop Liam Francis Gilday in The Godfather: Part III, 1989. 

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  2