As a self proclaimed movie buff and avid film historian I would be remiss not to suggest you tune in and watch the Paramount limited series, The Offer. It might well be the best “new to me” thing I’ve seen all year. Let me add that it’s very seldom that I’ll watch a series despite the many recommendations I receive from countless coworkers.

It’s the story of Oscar winning producer Albert S. Ruddy’s struggles to turn Mario Puzo’s novel The Godfather into a major motion picture against untold obstacles ranging from movie studios who have no faith in him to Frank Sinatra’s disdain for the story to actual mafioso characters including the head of the Colombo family.

The show is sprinkled with film history to keep movie buffs happy (guys and gals just like me). From movie posters adorning the walls of Paramount studios to name dropping film legends including Elizabeth Taylor and Robert Mitchum. Actors within the story will portray the likes of Robert Redford, Burt Reynolds and gangland figures including Mickey Cohen.

The plot smartly focuses on those behind the scenes as opposed to the actors hired on to play Brando, Pacino, Caan, Cazale, Keaton, Duvall, Shire, Sinatra etc. No doubt a dauting task for any actor when the people they’re portraying have ascended to Hollywood Royalty in many cases.

Again I generally stay away from spotlighting anything released post 2000 unless the subject material is classic film and The Offer easily qualifies with a number of performances that are Oscar worthy if only the Academy would recognize them. Yes, I was that impressed.

Here’s a look at the principle cast.

Miles Teller is nothing short of riveting as the driving force behind the Godfather production, Producer Albert S. Ruddy.

If this was a theatrical release, Juno Temple, as Ruddy’s assistant Bettye McCartt would surely get my vote for for Best Actress.

Matthew Goode and his rapid fire delivery had me convinced he was the legendary Paramount King, Robert Evans. Another award winning performance in my eyes.

Dan Fogler channeled his inner Francis Ford Coppola to send us back in time to see the famed director fight to bring his vision to the screen.

Burn Gorman damn near steals every scene he’s in as Austrian born Charlie Bluhdorn, the man who holds the purse strings to Paramount in the palm of his hands.

As Mafia Don Joe Colombo, Giovanni Ribisi, proves to be a friend to the production when one is most needed.

“The Heavy” Colin Hanks as studio man Barry Lapidus who is seemingly at odds with the crew throughout the films production.

Patrick Gallo as the originator of the story, Mario Puzo.

There are many other roles enacted in The Offer including Meredith Garretson as Ali MacGraw who for the unaware was married to Producer Evans at this time but when she signs on to film The Getaway for Peckinpah costarring alongside Steve McQueen the marriage would come to a crashing halt. She would shortly there after marry the so called King of Cool in 1973.

For you nostalgia fans how about the one and only Lou Ferrigno as Lenny Montana aka Luca Brasi. You know, the guy who “sleeps with the fishes.”

Among the others are Anthony Ippolito as Pacino, Frank John Hughes as Sinatra, Justin Chambers as Brando, Damian Conrad-Davis as Caan and Brandon Sklenar as Burt Reynolds. If you’re wondering why an actor would be engaged to play “The Burt” it’s because producer Ruddy would soon begin work on the smash hit The Longest Yard following the completion of The Godfather.

My intention is not to come out here and review the film/series and to honest it rarely is but rather to shine the light on those from the past and in this case a series from the present that takes us back to the production of one of the most famous films ever made and considered by many to be at or near the top on the list of the greatest films ever made.

One things for sure, I’ll be reaching towards the shelf to once again rewatch the 1972 classic very shortly. I’ll leave you with the trailer for the series.