Francis Ford Coppola is a filmmaker that has always struggled against the studio system going back to his earliest successes and the beginning of the Zoetrope days. It’s made his journey as a filmmaker a hard, struggling one, but considering he’s made three or four indisputable masterpieces it’s hard to say it hasn’t been worth it. Still, he’s had to operate on a fairly quiet level in recent years to enjoy his sort of neuvo-film school period that’s resulted in films like Tetro, Twixt, and Youth Without Youth and the rekindling of his passions.

Turns out FFC has an idea for a new film and he wants to do it big, and apparently he’ll be using his new offices on the Paramount lot to start developing it. Interesting beyond that is his allusion to a benefactor that will produce his film with unlimited resources, and that he’s apparently cooking up a big drama that will span four decades.

I have a secret investor that has infinite money. I learned what I learned from my three smaller films, and wanted to write a bigger film. I’ve been writing it. It’s so ambitious so I decided to go to L.A. and make a film out of a studio that has all the costume rentals, and where all the actors are. My story is set in New York. I have a first draft. I’m really ready for a casting phase. Movies are big in proportion to the period. It starts in the middle of the ‘20s, and there are sections in the ‘30s and the late ‘40s, and it goes until the late ‘60s.

The director spoke of this to EW as he helped pimp a five-movie box set of Blu-rays that includes both versions of Apocalypse Now, his classic The Conversation, One From The Heart, and Tetro. You can grab that from us if you’d like.

From where I sit, Francis Ford Coppola pretty much sealed his filmmaker cred for life many decades ago, so even if his contemporary work hasn’t jazzed me up I’ll always be eager to hear about the 73-year-old making more things. That’s just the kind of reusable “Get Out Of Director Jail Free” card that you get when you make The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, The Conversation, and Apocalypse Now. That he’s making a change and going for something bigger after his experimental run only piques my interest further. I hope whoever this “secret investor that has infinite money” turns out to be sees Coppola all the way through and doesn’t leave him dangling and jaded once again…