Filming begins for Gli asteroidi
by Vittoria Scarpa
- A coming-of-age story set in a formerly industrial province, 37-year-old Germano Maccioni’s debut feature will star Pippo Delbono and Chiara Caselli
Yesterday filming began for Gli asteroidi (lit. ‘Asteroids’), the debut fictional feature by 37-year-old director Germano Maccioni, whose previous work includes acclaimed short films and documentaries such as Fedele alla linea [+see also:
film profile] (2013), about singer and writer Giovanni Lindo Ferretti. The director and actor from Bologna (who has worked in both theatre and film with the likes of Giancarlo Cobelli, Franco Branciaroli, Franco Maresco and Giorgio Diritti) wrote the screenplay together with Giovanni Galavotti (The Man Who Will Come [+see also:
interview: Giorgio Diritti
film profile]): the result is a coming-of-age story set in the middle of the Emilian planes, in a boundless and alienating formerly industrial province among abandoned warehouses, traces of peasant life, and rough suburbs.
The film centres around Ivan, Pietro and Cosmic, three boys under the age of 20 who are tied to one another by close bonds of friendship. The economic crisis hasn’t spared their families, fraying affections and bonds, and their present-day reality is made up of empty and repetitive days: going to school, working for peanuts, hanging out at their local rec centre, bumming around, and a bit of petty theft. There’s no sign of the future. Their haven, where they go to smoke and daydream, is an abandoned warehouse which becomes a fateful place when everything suddenly collapses… All this against the backdrop of the astronomical observatory which fuels Cosmic’s dreams, the same observatory (the Medicina Radio Astronomical Observatory in Bologna) that features in Red Desert by Michelangelo Antonioni.
Produced and shot entirely in Bologna and its province, the three boys are played by amateur actors (Riccardo Frascari, Nicolas Balotti and Alessandro Tarabelloni) who grew up in the same environment as their characters. Among the adult actors, in key roles are Pippo Delbono, who plays an embittered criminal who sucks the boys into his delinquency, and Chiara Caselli as Pietro’s mother, who life has taken its weary toll on.
Gli asteroidi is being produced by Articolture and Ocean Productions with Rai Cinema, with the support of the Italian Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism and the Emilia-Romagna Film Commission.
(Translated from Italian)