Who Is Barry Lapidus on The Offer and Is He Based on a Real Person?

Barry Lapidus is a studio executive and one of the major characters in The Offer, a mini-TV series that chronicles the experiences and struggles of Oscar-winning producer Albert Ruddy while producing the iconic film, The Godfather. Barry is not a real person but is nevertheless based on real persons i.e. the studio executives who interfered with the production crew’s actions at every step.

Lapidus was thus a major thorn in the flesh of Ruddy and his co-filmmakers but they (Ruddy and co) were able to make the film exactly as they wanted it. Their efforts paid off as The Godfather was hugely successful upon release in 1972. It is now regarded as one of the greatest films ever made.

Barry Lapidus is a Fictional Character in the Mini TV series, The Offer  

Barry Lapidus is one of the major characters in The Offer, a mini-TV series that is available on the streaming platform known as Paramount+. The Offer basically gives a behind-the-scenes look into the making of The Godfather.

The TV series tells the story from the perspective of the producer, Albert Ruddy, and chronicles the difficulties and challenges he faced. Some of them include threats from the mafia, budget issues, casting arguments, and studio executives squabbling about production. Barry Lapidus is one of these studio executives in The Offer.

The Offer debuted in April 2022 and has most of the major players in the making of The Godfather as characters. They include Albert Ruddy (the film’s producer), Francis Ford Coppola (the film’s director), and Joe Colombo (a mafia boss that becomes friends with Ruddy). The film’s stars such as Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, and Robert Duvall are also captured.

The Offer also has some fictional characters and the most notable of them is Barry Lapidus. Barry Lapidus is based on a real person or more specifically a composite of real personalities. The Offer features the likes of Juno Temple, Matthew Goode, Justin Chambers, Nora Arnezeder, Giovanni Ribisi, Dan Fogler, and Burn Gorman.

Barry Lapidus The Offer
Barry Lapidus in The Offer Image Source

He is a Studio Executive Who Frustrates the Activities of the Makers of The Godfather

In The Offer, Barry Lapidus is billed as a studio executive who works for Charles Bluhdorn. Bluhdorn is the president of Gulf + Western Company, the parent company of Paramount Pictures, the company that is producing the godfather. Barry Lapidus’ job is to ensure that the production of The Godfather goes off without hitches and that the filmmakers do not overshoot the budget.

Lapidus appears in multiple episodes of The Offer and often butts head with Albert Ruddy and Francis Ford Coppola. In episode two of the show, he asks for multiple changes to keep the budget low. He also battles Paramount executive, Robert Evans over creative direction.

The people that Barry Lapidus is battling stand their ground though and by episode seven, he is absolutely furious and orchestrates a potential coup to get Coppola and Al Pacino fired. His plans however fail.

The makers of The Godfather are able to soldier on and their efforts are a success. When the film is released in 1972, it receives both critical and commercial acclaim. It grossed about $291 million and was the highest-grossing film of the year. It also won multiple awards and is now regarded as one of the greatest films ever made.

Barry Lapidus The Offer
Release poster of The Offer Image Source

Barry Lapidus’s Character is Based on the Real Life Studio Executives at Gulf+Western Company

Although a fictional character, Barry Lapidus is based on a real person namely the studio executives that oversaw the production of The Godfather. Barry Lapidus represents the old-guard studio executives who are not impressed when filmmakers try to be too creative. He rather wants them to follow the old trusted ways and even more importantly, stick to the budget and not overshoot it.

Barry Lapidus is the right-hand man of Charlie Bluhdorn, the president of Gulf + Western Entertainment Company, the parent company of Paramount Pictures, the company producing The Godfather. Therefore, it can be said that Barry Lapidus is based on Charlie Bluhdorn’s staff.

Barry Lapidus The Offer
Charlie Bluhdorn (R) with Jane Fonda and Robert Redford in the mid 60sImage Source

He was portrayed by Collins Hanks

Collin Hanks played Barry Lapidus in The Offer. Collin is an American actor who has appeared in several movies and TV series. They include Life in Pieces, Dexter, Body of Work, Orange County, A Friend of Family, and Fargo.

Fargo is a black comedy crime drama/anthology series that features a disparate set of characters as they deal with a plethora of crimes in the American mid-west in different time periods. Collin Hanks was one of the major stars in the first season of Fargo and played the role of a police officer named Gus Grimly. He received acclaim for his work as well as multiple award nominations.

They include nominations for the 2014 Critics’ Choice Television Awards for best supporting actor in a movie/miniseries, Golden Globes Awards nomination for best-supporting actor in a series, miniseries, or television film, and the Primetime Emmy Awards nomination for outstanding supporting actor in a miniseries or a movie. Collin Hanks is also better known as the eldest son of revered actor – Tom Hanks.

Barry Lapidus The Offer
Colin Hanks as Barry Lapidus in The Offer Image Source

Hanks has Revealed that He Took Great Pleasure in Playing the Role of Barry Lapidus 

Collin Hanks has described the Barry Lapidus character as an asshole but also maintained that it was a pleasure to play him. The actor also revealed that it was a bit easier for him to handle the role because it was a fictional one. According to Hanks, this meant that he did not have to worry about living up to anybody but could rather focus on bringing the character to life.

Hanks sees Lapidus as representing the old order but believes that the studio executive was making some legitimate arguments. He further revealed that Barry is a vindictive person who often sets everybody on edge once he enters a room but admitted that it was fun being able to mess around with other characters and annoy them

Where You Can Watch the Offer

You can only watch The Offer on Paramount+. Paramount+ is a subscription-based video-on-demand service owned by Paramount Global. Their content comes from the library of Paramount Pictures, CBS Media Ventures, Paramount Media Network, etc.

The Offer is an original series financed by Paramount Studios and as such, it is only available on their platform for now. You cannot watch The Offer on Hulu, Amazon Prime, and Netflix. You can only watch it on Paramount+ and a fee of $4.99 will get you a monthly subscription.


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