Filming is under way on Oltre il confine by Alessandro Valenti
- The Italian-French co-production signed Scirocco Films and Rosebud is being shot between Puglia and Senegal and tells the story of two African boys in search of a better future
Two African children look up at the stars and dream of travelling to Italy: this image perfectly encapsulates Alessandro Valenti’s first work, Oltre il confine, which is now being filmed in Salento. Having previously written screenplays for numerous other movies – ranging from Edoardo Winspeare’s titles (Brave Men [+see also:
film profile], Quiet Bliss [+see also:
film profile], The Ark of Disperata [+see also:
film profile]) to Leonardo Guerra Seragnoli’s next film The Time of Indifference [+see also:
film profile], based upon Alberto Moravia’s book of the same name – and having helmed several documentaries, short films and music videos, Valenti is now taking his first steps in the world of feature film. Following a few weeks in Puglia, travelling between Lecce, Otranto and Alessano, the crew led by Valenti will then head to Senegal where filming is set to wrap mid-January.
The world of two African boys is narrated in fairy-tale style: Bekisisa is twelve years old and has a magical voice which bewitches animals; his little brother Eno, who’s six, dreams of owning the shirt of Sadio Mané, the legendary footballer who plays for his favourite team. All alone, they leave their homeland having suffered a number of losses and they arrive in Italy, where the reality of their new life is anything but child friendly. They live out adventures, face trials and encounter many dangers. But they are united by a great bond, and other children will soon join them in their search for a better future.
Mama Fatou Ndyaye and Fallou Ndyaye, the young actors lending their talents to this story, were found by the director during a casting call in Salento. “I met Mama and Fallou following months of research on this story and I was enchanted by the truth and the magic in their outlook; these were children who were living in a village and had to walk kilometres every day to fetch water. Then, when I met them, they taught me something: that pain and suffering can be destroyed through the power of love and imagination”, Valenti explains.
Also starring Iaia Forte and Nicola Rignanese, the film is an Italian-French co-production courtesy of Scirocco Films and Rosebud Entertainment Pictures, alongside Rai Cinema. It is supported by Arte/Cofinova, as well as the Apulia Film Commission, and is sponsored by Save the Children Italy in association with the Emanuel Foundation and the Italian bank Banca Sella. The film also enjoys the support of the Casa della Carità Foundation.
(Translated from Italian)
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