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Luchino Visconti Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Trade Mark (1) | Trivia (16) | Personal Quotes (8)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 2 November 1906Milan, Lombardy, Italy
Date of Death 17 March 1976Rome, Lazio, Italy  (stroke)
Birth NameLuchino Visconti di Modrone
Height 6' 1" (1.85 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Luchino Visconti was born on November 2, 1906 in Milan, Lombardy, Italy as Luchino Visconti di Modrone. He was a director and writer, known for Rocco and His Brothers (1960), Death in Venice (1971) and The Leopard (1963). He died on March 17, 1976 in Rome, Lazio, Italy.

Trade Mark (1)

Frequently collaborated with Burt Lancaster

Trivia (16)

Biography in: John Wakeman, editor. "World Film Directors, Volume One, 1890-1945". Pages 1142-1148. New York: The H.W. Wilson Company, 1987.
President of the jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 1969
Born into one of Northern Italy's richest families as one of the Duke of Modrone's seven children.
From 1946 to 1960, he directed many plays of the Rina Morelli-Paolo Stoppa Company and became also a respected theater director.
Developed the movement of "Italian neo-realism" together with other directors such as Vittorio De Sica or Roberto Rossellini in the 1940s and 1950s.
A museum on the island of Ischia is dedicated to him.
Longtime companion of actor Helmut Berger from 1964 until his death.
Member of the jury at the Venice Film Festival in 1956
Suffered a stroke during the filming of Ludwig (1972).
Supporter of the Italian Communist Party.
Interviewed in "World Directors in Dialogue" by Bert Cardullo (Scarecrow Press, 2011).
Staged many lavishly produced grand operas and was involved in discovering Maria Callas.
Friend of Coco Chanel, who introduced him to the director Jean Renoir, for whom he then worked as an assistant during the late 1930's. After the war, Visconti established himself as an innovative director for the stage, on one occasion having Salvador Dali design his sets for 'As You Like It'. His sense of visual style was equally impressive in his film work, never better demonstrated than through his masterpiece Senso (1954).
His film Ossessione (1943) was based on James M. Cain's 'The Postman Always Rings Twice'. Because of copyright issues, it was not shown in the United States. The picture also engendered the ire of Benito Mussolini's censors who had Visconti thrown in jail. He was to be executed and only survived because of the timely arrival of American troops. 'Ossessione' was later hailed as an early example of Italian neo-realism.
Ran away from home four times, so his father placed him in a military school to teach him discipline.
A descendant of the 13th Century ruling dynasty of Milan, he received an aristocratic education, notably horsebreeding and the classics (which included painting, music and theatre). He played the cello and visited La Scala from an early age.

Personal Quotes (8)

[1976 comment on Luis Bunuel] I think today there are too many directors taking themselves seriously; the only one capable of saying anything really new and interesting is Luis Bunuel. He's a very great director.
[on Marcello Mastroianni] He's very human and easily identifies with the man in the street. He's never a hero. Rather, he's an anti-hero, and that's why in turn the public adores him. That's his great merit and his appeal.
[on Burt Lancaster] The Prince in "The Leopard" was a very complex character -- at times autocratic, rude, strong -- at times romantic, good, understanding -- and sometimes even stupid, and above all, mysterious. Burt is all these things too. Sometimes I think Burt is the most perfectly mysterious man I have ever met in my life.
[on Giancarlo Giannini] An extraordinary actor.
[on Vittorio Gassmann] He's a monster. Nature has made him prodigiously gifted and that's not always a blessing. His monstrous technical ability make him neglect to go deeper into the roles he plays. All the same, what an actor!
[on Ingmar Bergman] I don't begin to share his way of seeing things any more than his obsessions. All the same I find him interesting. And his universe is much stranger yet than any Japanese filmmaker.
[on Laura Antonelli] Don't underestimate Laura Antonelli. She's burning to do well. And then she has an extraordinary face, even without make-up. It's not with her that I'd discuss literature. I speak only of the film "L'Innocente," and what she does she does well.
[on Michelangelo Antonioni] It seems that boredom is one of the great discoveries of our time. If so, there's no question but that he must be considered a pioneer.

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