5 items from 2014
Rome – Italy’s Cannes Grand Prix winner “The Wonders” is working wonders at the local box office and serving as a confidence-booster for the Italian industry, coming in tandem with good news that the government has raised the cap on the country’s 25% tax credit for foreign productions, considered key to luring more foreign shoots.
After 32-year-old helmer Alice Rohrwacher (pictured) received Cannes’ second prize from Sophia Loren, her sophomore work, on the inexorable evaporation of healthy rural traditions in Berlusconi-era Tuscany, bowed strong at the Italian box office, via Bim Distribuzione, weighing in at number five in the weekend frame, one position ahead of David Cronenberg’s star-studded “Maps to the Stars.”
More importantly, “The Wonders” scored the Italian frame’s second-highest per screen average, Euros 2,528 ($3,441). And attendance rate has since been rising thanks to positive word of mouth, according to a Bim rep. To date, Rohrwacher’s prizewinning »
- Nick Vivarelli
The Italian film business, coming off an Oscar win this year for Paolo Sorrentino’s “The Great Beauty,” should be on a roll. But the Italo industry’s story is more complex, as shrinking budgets and a stagnant box office hamper a filmmaking community that’s stubbornly slow to shed its insular ways. Yet fresh faces are emerging, thanks to co-productions across Europe, helping the sector to stumble ahead.
Recently, the Italian Culture Ministry revealed alarming figures that show a 27% drop in Italian film investments in 2013 to €358 million ($495 million), compared with 2012, while the country’s cinematic output remained substantially stable, at 167 pics. The average budget of an Italian movie these days is a measly $2.3 million.
“The numbers show that the budgets of quality midrange movies are getting slimmer, and this is terrible,” comments producer Riccardo Tozzi, who heads Italy’s national motion picture association, Anica.
Tozzi predicts shrinking budgets would »
- Nick Vivarelli
The Weinstein Company has acquired rights to the Sky Italia crime drama series Gomorra, directed by Stefano Sollima (Romanzo Criminale). Marco D’Amore, Fortunato Cerlino, Maria Pia Calzone, Salvatore Esposito, Marco Palvetti star in the series based on Roberto Saviano’s bestselling novel, the inside story of the fierce Neapolitan crime organization Camorra. It tells the story of 30-year-old Ciro (d’Amore), the right hand of the Savastano clan’s godfather Pietro (Cerlino), and the ruthless war to take over “The System”. The series consist of 12 one-hour installments and in addition to Sky Italia is produced by Cattley, Fandango La 7 and Beta Film. Negotiations began at the 2013 Mipcom market. The deal is for the original series and no remake is planned as of now. “This is a project that caught our eye a while back for its world-class acting talent, as well as Stefano Sollima’s phenomenal abilities to craft a thriller like none other. »
- THE DEADLINE TEAM
Director: Michael Winterbottom
Writer: Paul Viragh
U.S. Distributor: Rights Available
Further down on our list you’ll see Winterbottom’s The Trip To Italy. We should see a double dose of him this year, and a dramatic effort to boot. While 2012’s The Look of Love was a serious endeavor, this latest sees the director return to thriller mode. A screenplay adaptation from actor turned writer Paul Viragh should be an interesting element.
Gist: Both a journalist and a documentary filmmaker chase the story of a murder and its prime suspect.
Release Date: While we’ll see Winterbottom’s other 2014 title unveil at Sundance, we’re hoping to see this pop up in Venice and Toronto.
More Top 200 Most Anticipated Films of 2014 Top 200 Most Anticipated Films for 2014: #115. Quentin Dupieux’s »
- Nicholas Bell
Rome – Bucking most of Europe’s downward box office trend, Italy’s box office in 2013 saw a 6 percent year-on-year rise in admissions to 97 million, and a 1.5 percent increase in grosses to $840 million, with Hollywood product accounting for a 53 percent piece of the Italo pie, exactly the same market share as in 2012.
The discrepancy between the percentage increase in admissions and grosses is due to a reduction in the country’s movie ticket prices this past year compared with 2012, which proved to be a smart move.
“We are among the few countries in Europe who are experiencing a positive time,” said Andrea Occhipinti, topper of prominent Italo distribbery Lucky Red and head of the country’s distributors, as the figures were announced at the Rome headquarters of motion picture association Anica on Wednesday.
Occhipinti also proudly pointed out that Italian movies account for a roughly 30 percent share of the 2013 home box office. »
- Nick Vivarelli
5 items from 2014
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