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Willi Cicci

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Title: Willi Cicci  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: The Godfather Part II, Corleone family, The Godfather: The Game, The Godfather, Salvatore Tessio, Frank Pentangeli, Ottilio Cuneo
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Willi Cicci

Willi Cicci is a fictional character in The Godfather film series, portrayed by Joe Spinell. The character of Cicci is loosely based on real-life Mafia soldier and informant Joe Valachi.


Cicci is a top enforcer for the Corleone family, working under longtime caporegime Peter Clemenza. He is introduced in The Godfather standing by a piano amid a group of Corleone soldiers who have "gone to mattresses" (in between battles) during the war between the Corleones and the Tattaglias. On the day of Corleone family Don Michael Corleone's nephew's baptism, Cicci assassinates Don Carmine Cuneo in the revolving doors at the St. Regis Hotel. Later, Cicci is one of the enforcers who take traitorous caporegime Sal Tessio away to be killed.

In The Godfather Part II, Cicci remains in New York City, working for Clemenza's successor, Frank Pentangeli. In 1958, when the film's story begins, he travels with Pentangeli to Anthony Corleone's First Communion in Lake Tahoe and expresses his suspicions about Clemenza's death, supposedly of a heart attack. After the party, Cicci is seen with Pentangeli back in New York when the latter is nearly killed by the Rosato brothers. Cicci opens fire on the Rosatos, but he is struck by a car and severely injured.

He recovers, and later joins Pentangeli in testifying against Michael at the Senate hearings on organized crime. His testimony is damning; he states that Michael not only killed Virgil Sollozzo and Captain McCluskey in 1947, but planned the mass slaughter of the other New York Dons as early as 1950. However, he claims that he never received orders directly from Michael.

Willi Cicci was originally intended to be one of the major characters in The Godfather Part III, but was written out and replaced by the character of Joey Zasa following Spinell's sudden death in early 1989 before any filming was to begin.

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