They were born in the foothills of Sicily. By 1924 their growing numbers and criminal activities had attracted the attention of Mussolini, who went about purging Italy of their secret society. America became their escape. In this stunning overview of the phenomenon known as La Cosa Nostra, THE HISTORY CHANNEL, RAI International and BIOGRAPHY present five programs that fully unveil the origins, the personalities, and the inner workings of the Mafia. Using never-before-seen footage and rare interviews with mob insiders and the agents who pursued them, THE GODFATHERS COLLECTION presents a gripping tale of greed, power, crime and betrayal. With in-depth portraits of crime bosses like Lucky Luciano, Meyer Lansky, Bugsy Siegel, and Carlo Gambino, this is the definitive, eye-opening account of organized crime in America. Volume 1: Godfathers
Godfathers investigates the mob lke no other documentary before it. From the mass immigration of Italians at the end of the 19th century to money laundering on the New York Stock Exchange in 2000, this up-to-date, feature-length production offers a unique perspective on the history of the Mafia as seen through the eyes of an Italian journalist. With newly discovered footage from Italian archives and rare interviews from both sides of the law, Godfathers probes the psychology, the sociology, and the economics behind this powerful yet secretive society. Some of the biggest names in mafia history are introduced, and the ways in which their political savvy helped them orchestrate many of history's major events is explained.
* LUCKY LUCIANO: CHAIRMAN OF THE MOB: He ran the Mob like a corporation--diversifying rackets, organizing gangs and running his own political candidates--and his top-secret war efforts earned him parole from a 50-year sentence.
* MEYER LANSKY: MOB TYCOON: From the pogroms of Eastern Europe to the heyday of the Vegas Mob, rare footage and interviews reveal the double life of the man known as the Mob's financial leader.
* GENOVESE: PORTRAIT OF A CRIME FAMILY: A soldier breaks the sacred mobster's oath of silence (omerta) and the Genovese family hits the headlines. From Joe the Boss to Vito Genovese to the "Odd Father" himself, every personality and gripping detail in this ongoing saga comes to life.
* BUGSY SIEGEL: Handsome, glamorous and the most vicious crime boss of all, Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel began as a hit man on the streets of Brooklyn and died the victim of a mysterious murder, but not before turning a desert mirage into a Las Vegas dreamland.