|Created by Mario Puzo|
Spouse Vito Corleone
First appearance The Godfather
Creator Mario Puzo
|Last appearance The Godfather: The Game|
Portrayed by Morgana King (48–62) Francesca De Sapio (20–26)
Children Sonny Corleone Fredo Corleone Michael Corleone Connie Corleone Tom Hagen (adoptive son)
Relatives Vincent Corleone (grandson) Anthony Corleone (grandson) Mary Corleone (granddaughter)
Played by Morgana King, Francesca de Sapio
Movies The Godfather, The Godfather Part II
Similar Connie Corleone, Vito Corleone, Fredo Corleone, Sonny Corleone, Michael Corleone
Carmela Corleone (1897–1959), a fictional character in Mario Puzo's The Godfather, is the wife of Don Vito Corleone.
Carmela is portrayed by Italian-American Morgana King in Francis Ford Coppola's film adaptation of the novel, as well as in The Godfather Part II. King is better known as a singer and is given a brief chance to display her vocal skills in the wedding reception scene of The Godfather when she sings the song "Luna Mezz'O Mare". Although King was born Maria Grazia Morgana Messina in Pleasantville, New York, her parents were "from Fiumefreddo di Sicilia, Province of Catania, Sicily."
Carmela was born in Sicily in 1897, and emigrated to the United States shortly after the turn of the century. She married Vito Corleone in 1914; they were married for just over 40 years until Vito's death in 1955. They had four children – Sonny, Fredo, Michael and Connie. They also took care of a friend of Sonny, Tom Hagen, who later serves as the family consigliere.
In the novel, Carmela Corleone is portrayed as a traditional Italian immigrant woman who speaks in very broken English. In the movies, however, she speaks fluent English as an adult, with a marked New York accent. In the novel, she develops a close relationship with Michael's girlfriend and future wife, Kay. She is given more expansive dialogue in The Godfather Part II, notably when she confronts her daughter Connie about her behavior early in the film, and when she discusses family life with Michael, who fears that his role as Don of the Corleone criminal empire will cost him his family. Carmela Corleone dies toward the end of the sequel.
Carmela was disturbed by Vito's change from a kind, quiet young man to a pragmatic and ruthless criminal. However Carmela seems to forgive Vito for his many crimes, because he remains essentially a good man who is devoted to his family. Devoutly Catholic, Carmela attends Mass every day to pray for her husband's soul to keep him from "going down there."
In The Godfather Part II's flashback scenes, the young Carmela is portrayed by Francesca De Sapio.
Carmela is a major character in the 2012 prequel novel The Family Corleone, which portrays their early years together, raising a family as Vito becomes a crime boss.