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VENICE 2015 Selection

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Bellocchio, Guadagnino, Caligari and Maresco among the 11 Italians on the Lido

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- Italy will be represented by four films in competition, three out of competition, two in Orizzonti and two in Venezia Classici

Bellocchio, Guadagnino, Caligari and Maresco among the 11 Italians on the Lido
Per amor vostro by Giuseppe M. Gaudino

“The four Italian films in competition at Venice are a strong and positive signal for Italian film, but let’s be under no illusions: at the moment, in our film industry, there is more dark than light”. This is how the director of the Venice International Film Festival Alberto Barbera, introduced the Italian ‘gang’ that will soon be gracing the Lido. “Too many films are being produced”, argued Barbera, “twice the amount of two years ago but with the same resources, and paying the price is the quality”. This is something which is certainly not lacking in the 11 films selected (out of no fewer than 148 Italian candidates) for the various sections of this year’s Festival: four in competition, three out of competition, two in Orizzonti and two in Venezia Classici.

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The four films that will be battling it out for the Golden Lion are French co-productions. Sangue del mio sangue [+see also:
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interview: Marco Bellocchio
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]
 by Marco Bellocchio, a Kavac FilmIBC Movie and Rai Cinema production, which has also received contributions from Switzerland, is the story of Benedetta, a nun holed up in the ancient convent-prison of Santa Chiara, in Bobbio, guilty of seducing twins. The cast includes Roberto Herlitzka, Pier Giorgio Bellocchio, Alba Rohrwacher and Filippo Timi, with cinematography by Daniele Ciprì. The film is scheduled for release in Italian theatres on 9 September with 01A Bigger Splash [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Luca Guadagnino
film profile
]
 by Luca Guadagnino is, on the other hand, a Frenesy Film and Cota Film production backed by Studio Canal, and features an international cast including Ralph Fiennes, Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton and Matthias Schoenaerts. It is a remake of La piscine by Jacques Deray and is set on the island of Pantelleria. Then there’s Per amor vostro [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Giuseppe M Gaudino
film profile
]
 by Giuseppe M. Gaudino, starring Valeria Golino in the role of the wife of a member of the Camorra (“but it’s not a film about the Camorra”, as Barbera was quick to point out), which is a Buena OndaEskimoFigli del BronxGaundri, Bea Production Company and Minerva Pictures Group production, with international sales being handled by Rai Com. The cast also features Massimiliano Gallo and Adriano Giannini. Finally, there’s The Wait [+see also:
film review
trailer
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interview: Lou de Laâge
interview: Piero Messina
film profile
]
 by newcomer and former assistant director to Paolo Sorrentino Piero Messina, inspired by the work of Luigi Pirandello and starring Juliette Binoche and Lou de Laâge in the role of two women who are cut off from the world in a house in the Sicilian hinterland, waiting for a man who will perhaps never come. The film, produced by Indigo Film, will be distributed in Italy by Medusa on 17 September.

The out of competition selection features the last feature film of Claudio CaligariNon essere cattivo [+see also:
film review
trailer
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]
, which he completed shortly before his death and is the story of two friends (Luca Marinelli and Alessandro Borghi) and their life of excess in the 1990s in Ostia, on the outskirts of Rome. The film is a Kimerafilm production (one of the producers being Valerio Mastandrea) with Rai Cinema and Taodue, and will be distributed by Good Films. There are also two Italian documentaries being shown out of competition: Gli uomini di questa città io non li conosco by Franco Maresco (whose film Belluscone. Una storia siciliana [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
was awarded last year at Venice) on the life and work of theatre director Franco Scaldati, produced by Ila Palma and Dream Film with Rai Cinema, and L’esercito più piccolo del mondo [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 by Gianfranco Pannone, a Vatican City-Italy-Switzerland co-production that goes behind the scenes and into the world of the Swiss Guard in the time of Pope Francis.

Selected for the Orizzonti section is Italian Gangster [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
 by Renato De Maria and Pecore in erba [+see also:
trailer
interview: Alberto Caviglia
film profile
]
 by Alberto Caviglia. The former, produced by Istituto Luce Cinecittà with Minerva Pictures, takes us on an original and spectacular journey into the most striking feats of the Italian criminal underworld, legitimised by the tabloids and film. The latter, which is the debut film of the former assistant director of Ferzan Ozpetek, is, in Barbera’s opinion “perhaps the most entertaining piece of the entire selection”, a surreal comedy set in the Roman quarter of Trastevere, produced by On My Own with the support of the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism. The Venezia Classici section features, among the various documentaries on cinema, Alfredo Bini, ospite inatteso by Simone Isola, the portrait of a producer who was most well-known for his friendship with Pier Paolo Pasolini, and Dietro gli occhiali bianchi by Valerio Ruiz, on the great director and screenwriter Lina Wertmüller. Finally, another Italian, Flaminio Zadra, will be participating in the Biennale College - Cinema, as the producer of Blanka [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Kohki Hasei
film profile
]
, the debut film of Japanese director Kohki Hasei.

(Translated from Italian)

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