04/04/2014 02:49 pm ET

See Marlon Brando's 'Godfather' Transformation

Marlon Brando was 47 years old when "The Godfather" was released in March of 1972, so how was he able to turn into such a believable senior citizen to play Vito Corelone? With the help of makeup artist Dick Smith, who transformed Brando from his youthful self to the old-time gangster. To honor Brando's birthday on Thursday, the official Instagram account of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences posted a photo of Brando's conversion. The picture actually comes from "The 'Godfather' Family Album," a book of photographer Steve Schapiro's work. Check out the compilation here, and see Brando as Don Vito below.