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PRODUCTION Italy / France

Roberto Benigni to play Geppetto in Matteo Garrone's Pinocchio

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- The Oscar-winning actor-director also previously directed his own version of Collodi’s famous tale back in 2002, in which he played the puppet. Filming will commence in early 2019

Roberto Benigni to play Geppetto in Matteo Garrone's Pinocchio
Roberto Benigni and Matteo Garrone

Sixteen years after directing his somewhat unsuccessful version of Pinocchio [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
– in which he played the famous puppet – it might be somewhat of a surprise to hear that Roberto Benigni has once again decided to take the plunge into Carlo Collodi's universe, this time in the role of Geppetto, the poor old carpenter and father of the most famous wooden puppet in the world. Matteo Garrone will start shooting his highly anticipated Pinocchio [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
in early 2019, an Italian/French co-production produced by Archimede with RAI Cinema and Le Pacte, in association with Recorded Picture Company.

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Charlemagne Youth Prize

"Filming Pinocchio and directing Roberto Benigni are two dreams come true," declared Garrone, whose film Dogman [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Matteo Garrone
film profile
]
won Marcello Fonte the Best Actor award at Cannes Film Festival. "I’ve been chasing Collodi’s puppet ever since I was a child and started drawing my first storyboards. Over the years I’ve always felt a certain familiarity with the story. It was also a matter of 'chasing' Benigni for a long time. The fact that we finally have the opportunity to work together is an extraordinary opportunity for me. Pinocchio will be a family film, for people old and young, and there’s no one quite like Roberto - who has amused and moved millions of viewers all over the world - to excite an audience of all ages." 

"A great character, a great story, a great director – playing Geppetto directed by Matteo Garrone is a great source of happiness for me" commented the actor-director who won an Oscar back in 1999 for Life is Beautiful, and whose last appearance on the big screen dates back to To Rome with Love [+see also:
trailer
interview: Woody Allen
film profile
]
(2012) by Woody Allen.

Written and directed by Matteo Garrone, Pinocchio will be shot entirely in Lazio, Tuscany and Puglia. The characters and fantastic creatures will be realistic, combining prosthetic makeup and digital effects thanks to the talent of the two-time Oscar winner for Best Makeup Mark Coulier (Grand Budapest Hotel [+see also:
film review
trailer
making of
film profile
]
, The Iron Lady [+see also:
film review
trailer
making of
film profile
]
) and VFX Supervisor Rachael Penfold (The Revenant, Cloud Atlas [+see also:
film review
trailer
making of
film profile
]
). 

The film will be distributed in Italy by 01 Distribution and in France by Le Pacte. International sales are handled by HanWay Films.

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(Translated from Italian)

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