Rome Film Fest 2017: Merging Cinema and Art in All their Facets at the Glorious City

Thursday October 26, the 12th Rome Film Fest is up and running, unspooling through Sunday, November 5, under Artistic Director Antonio Monda and Piera Detassis, President of the Fondazione Cinema per Roma that produces the event.

The Auditorium Parco della Musica is the main venue for the showcase, with its gleaming theaters and sweeping red carpet. As every year, the Rome Film Fest gets the whole city into the action, with venues downtown and across the city.

Hostiles: Opening Night

At 7:30 pm, the Sala Sinopoli, hosted the opening film for the Official Selection, Hostiles by Scott Cooper. The fourth feature-length film by American filmmaker and screenwriter Scott Cooper, who previously directed Crazy Heart, Out of the Furnace and Black Mass, is an unconventional dramatic western that explores with remarkable intensity one of the most common and complex themes addressed by this genre: the relationship with Native Americans.

Set in 1892, Hostiles tells the story of an Army captain who agrees to escort an old Cheyenne war chief and his family to tribal lands in Montana. Starting at 6:30, Scott Cooper and stars Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl, Pride and Prejudice, Barney’s Version) and Wes Studi (Dances with Wolves, The Last of the Mohicans, Heat) walked the Fest’s red carpet.  Hostiles also screened at 8 pm at the 3 e Google Cinema Hall in the Cinema Village.

Close Encounter with Christoph Waltz

At 5:30 pm in the Sala Petrassi, the first Close Encounter featured two-time Oscar winner Christoph Waltz. The Austrian actor talked about his astonishing career, laden with star turns in films by some of our greatest contemporary filmmakers, such as Roman Polański (Carnage), Terry Gilliam (The Zero Theorem), Tim Burton (Big Eyes), and Sam Mendes (Spectre). Waltz’ roles in Quentin Tarantino’s films Inglourious Basterds and Django Unchanged earned him two Oscar Awards as Best Supporting Actor, in 2009 and 2012.

At 5 pm, inside the Auditorium Parco della Musica, the Rome Film Fest’s exhibitions opened to the public. Studio 2 and Studio 3 hosted “Auteur Arts,” a project conceived and promoted by actress Simona Marchini, featuring six videos that spring from the interation between six artists, six writers and six directors.

Artworks by Pizzi Cannella, Hidetoshi Nagasawa, Roberto Pietrosanti, Marina Sagona, Giuseppe Salvatori and Jannis Kounellis (in the first tribute to the late artist) will engage in a dialogue with the writings of Emanuele Trevi, Claudio Damiani, Jhumpa Lahiri, Marco Lodoli, Aurelio Picca and Elena Stancanelli. The narrative that emerges goes visual through six short films that will be screened in the exhibition venues, where the works used as dramaturgical elements will also be on display.

Celebrating Toto: Late Great Italian Comedian

The Foyer of the Sala Sinopoli displayed several photos of Totò, as a tribute to the great Italian comedian who died fifty years ago. On the occasion of the restoration of Miseria e nobilità by Mario Mattoli, the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia has selected some superb photos of the Neapolitan actor from its archives, taken from both his famous and lesser-known films.

In the foyer of the Auditorium Parco della Musica, AMREF also exhibited 21 faces of its Africa campaigns, cultural figures who have endorsed AMREF, artfully portrayed here by photographer Francesco Cabras. The twenty-one personalities declaring their love for Africa are: Fiorella Mannoia, Roberto Saviano, PIF, Giobbe Covatta, Erri De Luca, Neri Marcorè, Alex Braga, Lillo and Greg, Sergio Cammariere, Riccardo Iacona, Alessandro Preziosi, Claudia De Lillo, Cecile, Ludovico Fremont, Remo Girone, Paolo Briguglia, Corrado Augias, Marco Baliani, Lella Costa and Sveva Sagramola.

At 6:30 pm, at the Hotel de Russie, the exhibition “Scatti di Cinema & Moda” opened under the aegis of the Rome Film Fest. Film and fashion are areas in which Italy famously excels, and the intersection of the two, many years ago, was first celebrated by Luxury Files magazine. The exhibition displays a sampling of the most sophisticated shots of well-known actors and actresses made by and published in the magazine: stars who, in one sitting on the set, interpreted the meeting of film and fashion in dream-like poses.

Program at the AuditoriumArte venue

At 3 pm, the first talk in the series “CineCampus – Lezioni di Cinema,” organized by the Roma Lazio Film Commission and moderated by Steve Della Casa, saw filmmaker, actress and screenwriter Susanna Nicchiarelli engaging audiences in a masterclass.

ACMF: Association of Film Composers

At 6 pm the AuditoriumArte venue hosted the presentation of the ACMF – the association of film composers. The conference was coordinated by journalist Marco Spagnoli, with featured speakers Pivio, acting ACMF president (Ammore e malavita, Song’ e Napule, The Scent of the Night, Steam: The Turkish Bath, with fellow composer Aldo De Scalzi); Giuliano Taviani, acting ACMF vice-president (A Private Matter, Black Souls, Caesar Must Die, Escort in Love), and Claudio Messina, acting ACMF secretary (former RTI editor).

Alice nella città
At 11 am, the Alice nella città program featured the opening of the showcase “A Tribute to the LUX Prize” at the Amaldi High School, featuring Gino Castaldo, Ema Stokholma, Anna Foglietta, Michela Cescon, and Andrea Bosca from the project “Every Child is My Child”. This will be followed by a screening of the film Welcome by Philippe Lioret.

Stand Up for Creativity

At 4 pm, at Casa Alice, the conference “Stand Up for Creativity” discussed the job of being a film producer, with Fulvio Lucisano

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