Virgil Sollozzo

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Virgil Sollozzo
Virgil Sollozo.png
Virgil Sollozzo, as portrayed by Al Lettieri in The Godfather.
First appearance The Godfather
Created by Mario Puzo
Portrayed by Al Lettieri
Nickname(s) The Turk
Gender Male
Occupation Drug Lord

Virgil "The Turk" Sollozzo (1898 – January 1946) is a fictional character and one of the primary antagonists, alongside with Emilio Barzini, of Mario Puzo's The Godfather.

In the novel, it is said that he got his nickname because he has a nose like a Turkish scimitar. He also has a Turkish wife and children, and does much of his business (growing poppy) in Turkey. Sollozzo in the film and books is described as a top narcotic man and highly intelligent in business dealings, able to pick up that Sonny was interested in his deal when Vito Corleone declined his offer of partnership. He helped orchestrate two assassination attempts on Vito, only being foiled by bad luck at the first attempt when Vito was hit by five bullets but still survived, and by the unexpected intervention of Michael after buying off corrupt police captain McCluskey to remove Vito's bodyguards in the hospital. He attempts a final time to negotiate a truce, which the Corleone family believes is merely a gambit to buy time for him to strike again. Sollozzo asks to speak with Michael because he is seen as someone trusted by the Corleone family but not an actual threat to Sollozzo. As a precaution, McCluskey, serving as Sollozzo's de facto bodyguard, pats down Michael at the beginning of the meeting to ensure he is unarmed.

In the book, Sollozzo speaks Sicilian to Michael because he feels he can better express himself in that language. In the film, his English seems to be native and accent-free, though he still communicates with Michael in Italian. It is heavily implied the real reason for his speaking Italian is to give McCluskey the alibi of not understanding what they are saying. During the dinner, Michael, having recovered the gun planted in the bathroom by Peter Clemenza, assassinates Sollozzo and McCluskey before escaping to a waiting car driven by Corleone Captain Salvatore Tessio.

In Francis Ford Coppola's film adaptation, he is portrayed by Al Lettieri.[1][2]

In the game[edit]

In The Godfather: The Game, Virgil Sollozzo is voiced by Richard Newman.


  1. ^ "The Godfather (1972)". Retrieved 2014-06-24. 
  2. ^ Ebert, Roger. "The Godfather". Retrieved 2014-07-07.