Nobody could accuse Sofia Coppola of being lazy. In her 28 years she's attended art school, started a clothing line, opened a boutique in Los Angeles, modeled for Calvin Klein, hosted a series on Comedy Central and acted in films. Some endeavors weren't so successful: Her performance as Al Pacino's daughter in The Godfather: Part III was crucified by critics.

Coppola has put the experience behind her, but tells TV Guide Online why she took the part in the first place. "I was going to school and my dad [director Francis Ford Coppola] asked me at the last minute to play the part. [Winona Ryder had dropped out due to exhaustion.] I like to be open and try everything. I didn't think about how personally people take that movie. I thought: OK, I'll try it. I was 18 and the last thing you want when you're 18 is your dad telling you what to do. It was difficult."

What a difference a decade makes! Coppola has left acting to the actors and is following in her father's footsteps. Her directorial debut, The Virgin Suicides, has received critical acclaim. "I spent my 20s not knowing what I wanted to do. When I did a short film, I realized it kind of brought together all the things that I was interested in."

How does her father feel about her new career? "He's happy that my brother and I want to direct. It seems like parents like to pass on [what they do] to the next generation. They were never discouraging. I learned everything I know about film from my dad."