Title: Roberto Rossellini

genre: documentary
lenght: 63
country of origin: italy
year of production: 2001
Format: Digital Betacam , v.o. it., sott. english, sott. Francaise

director:
carlo lizzani

subject AND SCREENPLAY:
Carlo Lizzani, Vittorio Giacci, laura e silvia pettini

CONVERSATION WITH WITNESS OF rossellini'S CINEMA AND ARTS:
Ingrid Bergman, Roberto Rossellini, François Truffaut, Martin Scorsese, Isabella Rossellini, Carlo Lizzani, Marcella De Marchis, Sergio Amidei, Federico Fellini, Henri Langlois, fra’ Severino, Sonali Sen Roy, Renzo Rossellini, Silvia d’Amico Bendicò, e contibuti degli attori che recitarono in  “Stromboli” e “Paisà” (Mario Vitale e Alfonsino).

clip from movies:
Europa 51, Roma città aperta, Paisà, La prise du pouvoir par Louis XIV, Fantasia sottomarina, La nave bianca, Un pilota ritorna, L’uomo dalla croce, Germania anno zero, L’amore, Stromboli terra di Dio, Viaggio in Italia, Francesco giullare di Dio, Giovanna d’arco al rogo, India Matri Bhumi, Il Generale della Rovere, L’età di Cosimo de’ Medici, Socrate, Agostino d’Ippona, Cartesius, Il Messia.

subject AND SCREENPLAY:
Carlo Lizzani, Vittorio Giacci, laura e silvia pettini

executive production:
laura e silvia pettini

production:
felix film

co-Production:
Rai cinema
nuct

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international distribution:

Rai trade


Synopsis

The life of Roberto Rossellini is narrated by looking back at his early years in Rome within his family, by visiting the places where he lived or shot his films, such as Rome, the Amalfi coast and Paris and by listening to the recollections of his collaborators, his sons and daughters and his women, and the opinions of those who chose him as their Master, both in Italy and across the world.The excerpts from his works mark the various stages in his artistic career. The purpose of the film is, above all, to disprove the many commonplaces about his private life and his poetic world.

Behind the young Rossellini, there was a family that was hardly foreign to the cultural life of the early decades of the 20th century. His house was visited regularly by the rich bourgeoisie, but also by artists and intellectuals. His musician brother proved to be an important presence since his adolescence.The contacts with the group of CINEMA were no less decisive for him, than they were for Visconti.

Under this perspective, his thirst for culture, the time spent reading and studying in adulthood, his voracity when dealing with great literature books and great figures of the past – especially after having abandoned cinema and turned to television – seem like a compensation for the dispersion to which the film-making business compelled him during the turbulent years of the war and post-war period. The film also disproves the commonplace about the artistic relation between Rossellini and Ingrid Bergman, which seems to survive even today.

As a witness of the historical events that marked Italian cinema in those years, Lizzani recalls the exceptional nature of the work carried out by Rossellini vis-à-vis the prevailing myths of those days. Although neorealism had received its first major acknowledgements at international level, Hollywood continued to exercise its irresistible attraction on filmmakers across the world.

For decades, many European filmmakers had realised their dreams by migrating to the Mecca of cinema. At the end of the forties, Rossellini came from three commercial flops.“ Paisa’ “, praised by critics, did not equal the success of “ Roma città’ aperta “ amongst viewers; “ Germania anno zero “ and “ l’Amore “ had definitely weakened him on the European market and had been ignored by the American market. It would have been only natural for any European film-maker, even one with a strong personality, to seek to be adopted by Hollywood by taking advantage of Bergman’s generous offer.

Rossellini did exactly the opposite. He invited this extraordinary Hollywood icon to work in his country, with the risk of shattering her from a commercial point of view and definitely losing all the credit he had earned with the huge success of “ Roma città’ aperta «.

He paid dearly for his consistency. He was slowly marginalised from the market. However, his was a great response to that strong need for a European and an Italian identity, that torments us even today and to which Rossellini gave an extraordinary and prophetic contribution. Thanks chiefly to French critics, his three films with Bergman are universally acknowledged as innovators of cinema and cornerstone contributions to the creation of modern cinema.

When we look back at his works (without the passion that probably divided critics and film-makers during the decades of his career) one thing is certain: Rossellini never stopped questioning himself on the conflicting, dramatic and often tragic relation between individuals and the different historical events they experience.

In this respect, his motion pictures and television works mirror and complement each other. In his films he portrays chiefly fragments of history: soldiers and refugees in “Un Pilota ritorna “, the people, the religious and the partisans in “ Roma città’ aperta “ , “ Paisa’“ and “ Fraticelli di Assisi “, the boy in “ Germania anno zero “; the many different, often lost women portrayed by Ingrid Bergman.

Or the reality which Rossellini comes face to face with when he questioned himself on the identity of such a remote world as India. For television, instead, he depicted important philosophers and historical figures, from Socrates to Pascal and from the Apostles to the “Sun King“.

Two different forms of human existence compared at a distance to answer the great questions that tormented him since his youth, when he began to be “committed” to portraying on the screen the features and characters of the world and events that surrounded him.

On the big and small screen, his films are like the many chapters of story narrated through pictures.

Festival:

II Festival del Cinema delle Isole

Isola d’Elba - Rio Marina, 21 - 24 june 2001

25° Festival des Films du Monde
Montréal, 23 august - 3 september 2001 – sezione “Hommage”

11° Rencontres cinématographiques de la Seine-St-Denis
Seine St Denis, 14 - 27 november 2001

19° Torino Film Festival
Torino, 15 - 23 november 2001 – sezione “Sopralluoghi Italiani”

Italian Film Festival
Sithengi, 16 - 22 november 2001

10° Missing Film Festival
Genova, 4 - 16 dicember 2001 – Lo Schermo Perdutoi

6° Roma Film Festival
Rome, 14 - 23 dicember 2001 - Cinema Quattro Fontane / Palazzo delle Esposizioni

15° Festival International des Programmes Audiovisuels
Biarritz, 22 - 27 january 2002 – sezione Fipatel

21° International Istanbul Film Festival
Instanbul, 13 – 28 april 2002

Venezia ad Hollywood - III edizione
Los Angeles, 4 - 7 dicember 2002 - Istituto Italiano di Cultura

10° Festival del Cortometraggio
Pescara, 1 - 6 dicember 2003 - Auditorium Flaiano

BA Film Festival
Busto Arsizio, 25 march - 1 april 2006

IV IschiaFilmFestival
Ischia, 13 - 24 june 2006

Festival del Cinema D’Arte di Palazzo Venezia
Rome, 8 - 29 september 2006

Italienska Filmfestivalen
Stockholm, 22 - 28 september 2006

13° Rassegna del documentario – Premio Libero Bizzarri
San Benedetto del Tronto, 23 - 30 september 2006

Campidano Film Festival
San Sperate Samassi, 20 september - 20 dicember 2008

46° Festival Internazionale del Nuovo Cinema
Pesaro, 20 - 28 june 2010


public screenings:

Retrospettiva Roberto Rossellini - Auditorium du Louvre
Parigi, 6 April – 17 june 2001 – special event

Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II
Napoli, january 2002 - Dipartimento di scienze storiche “Ettore Lepore”

Cinema Anteo Milano
Milan, 7 april 2002

Museo D’Arte Contemporanea
Rome, 3 june 2002 - 25° anniversario della morte di Roberto Rossellini

Omaggio del Comune di Roma a Roberto Rossellini
Rome, Auditorium Parco della Musica 22 september 2002 - special event
(Sala “700”, n.3 screenings free pass, sold out)

Cinema Lucciola
Ladispoli, 1 dicember 2002

Palazzo Doria Pamphili
Valmontone, 17 april 2005

Giardini della Flora Caprese
Capri, 9 july 2005

Natale di Praeneste
Palestrina, 29 june 2006

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ONCE UPON A TIME IN ITALY - Memories from a bygone country (1957-1967)
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TALKING ABOUT CINEMA
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BEING CLAUDIA CARDINALE
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The perfect fit
by Piergiorgio Gay (Italy, documentary, 2005)

Looking for SOPHIA
by Roberto Olla (Italy, 52’, documentary, 2004)

CESARE ZAVATTINI

by Carlo Lizzani (Italy, 52’, documentary, 2003)

The Off-screen Director

by fedele aula (Italy, 52’, documentary, 2002)

ROBERTO ROSSELLINI
by Carlo Lizzani (Italy, 64’, documentary, 2001)

ROBERTO ROSSELLINi, FRAGMENTS AND SPEECHES

by Carlo Lizzani (Italy, 74’, documentary, 2001)

LUCHINO VISCONTI

by Carlo Lizzani (Italy, 60’, documentary,1999)



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