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PRODUCTION Italy / Chile

Solinas Prize-winning In acque profonde to be made into an international co-production

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- Stefano Mutolo’s project, produced by Italy's Radical Plans with Chile's Villano Producciones, is a 1930s Italian western, starring a young girl

Solinas Prize-winning In acque profonde to be made into an international co-production
Stefano Mutolo with his award at the 4th Italy-Spain Co-production Forum

A film that goes in a different direction but uses genre cinema as a starting point is the aim of Stefano Mutolo’s In acque profonde (lit. In Deep Waters), produced by Radical Plans, whose subject matter won him the 3rd edition of the Italy-Spain Solinas Prize just a few days ago –tied with Toro rojo by Luigi Roccati and Alessandro Regaldo. The prize, which favours Italian, Spanish and Latin American co-productions, has been awarded to the two titles "for their original approach to a contemporary and questioning genre, with dreamlike and visionary nuances, blending action, adventure and coming-of-age tales with a very modern reflection on the fascination of power and the freedom choices of illegal immigrants and people on the fringes of society.” The two projects, which took part in the 4th Italy-Spain Co-production Forum as part of the 11th Italian Film Festival in Madrid, reinterpret Italian western genre cinema and coming-of-age tales with a story about a young "luchador" in search of a fortune. 

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In acque profonde by Stefano Mutolo – a screenwriter and film and television distributor with his company Berta Film – is set during the Fascist period and sees a young herdswoman looking to cash in on a bloody marsh hunter’s bounty, who is hindering the monumental Fascist reclamation of the Pontine Marshes. The film, which will be shot in Tuscany, Lazio and Spain, is Mutolo’s first feature film and screenwriter project and aims to reinterpret the Italian western at a time when genre cinema is coming back into fashion. Using spaghetti westerns by masters such as Sergio Corbucci and Sergio Leone as a starting point, as well asepic New Hollywood westerns by Michael Cimino and Sam Peckinpah, Mutolo tries to "indigenise" the Italian western, reviving it through new paradigms and setting it among the swamps that were once a big part of central Italy. "The project I presented is also heavily indebted to the western scripts written by Franco Solinas, which I love so much, such as the The Big Gundown and A Bullet for the General," says the director. "The film’s protagonist is a young girl, as I would like this film to speak to young Europeans today."

"The Italy-Spain Solinas Prize," the Radical Plans producer Haider Rashid explained to Cineuropa, "is a new step towards the construction of an international co-production, which already includes a Chilean co-producer, Villano Producciones, and has allowed us to consult with potential Spanish co-producers. We plan to wrap up fundraising on the film by the autumn of 2019, in order to start production in spring 2020."

(Translated from Italian)

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