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Francis Ford Coppola Denies Megalopolis Chaos Rumors

No, Francis Ford Coppola isn't actually pulling an "Apocalypse Now" on the set of his latest movie, "Megalopolis," despite widespread reports claiming so, the director says. "I love my cast, I love what I'm getting each day," explained Coppola in a statement to Deadline on Tuesday, January 10. "I am on schedule and on budget," Coppola said. "And that's what is important to me."

Rumors have been flying left and right this week about the status of "Megalopolis" after a report from The Hollywood Reporter claimed the sci-fi epic was "in peril" due to budget issues and numerous on-set problems. One source told the outlet that "it was absolute madness, being on set," while others described waves of production issues. At one point during the shoot, Coppola went so far as to fire almost everyone on his visual effects team, per THR sources.  Production designer Beth Mickle and supervising art director David Scott both reportedly left the project and the film, according to the outlet, actually has no art department as of this writing. But Coppola — who famously went through budget and production issues while filming his 1979 classic "Apocalypse Now" — insists that everything is peachy keen. 

'I've never worked on a film where I was so happy'

According to Francis Ford Coppola, working on "Megalopolis" with the movie's cast and crew has been a success and incredibly rewarding so far, and any reports claiming otherwise are completely false. He told Deadline, "I've never worked on a film where I was so happy with the cast. I am so happy with the look and that we are so on schedule. These reports never say who these sources are. To them, I say, ha, ha, just wait and see."

As noted by Deadline and Coppola himself, major changes to his films and production crews have been a calling card of his over the years. It has nothing to do with any single person or team specifically, Coppola says, but rather his need to stay creative and on top of things financially. 

"It was basically about managing cost," the filmmaker explained, in reference to the reported changes going on within his "Megalopolis" visual effects and art departments. "We'll finish the film in spring of 2023, and we're totally on schedule, which is hard to do on a big picture. I don't know how many films can say that eight weeks in but we are and that's a fact." Coppola insists that he loves what his acting and production team has been doing with "Megalopolis," and there's not a single thing he'd change about the shoot so far. 

"My cast is the most wonderful group of actors, who are doing beautiful work and there isn't one case of where I wish I had cast another way," Coppola concluded. "Every night I go see the dailies, and I understand why I am going through all of this ... The look of the film is exactly what I dreamed."