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Marco Tullio Giordana • Director

‘My films question the Italians’


- The cold-ish critical reception of Giordana’s Once You’re Born... in Cannes was compensated by its great results in Italy in only one week-end

Marco Tullio Giordana • Director

The cold-ish critical reception of Giordana’s Once You’re Born... [+see also:
film review
interview: Marco Tullio Giordana
interview: Riccardo Tozzi
film profile
in Cannes (in competition) was compensated by its great results in Italy in only one week-end. This morning, 01 Distribution announced that on Friday, the day of its release, the film earned no less than 50,000 euros ; on Saturday this figure was multiplied by three (160,000 euros). For the director whom Cineuropa met in Cannes, at the Majestic, these results are ‘very encouraging’. Giordana did not mention what his expectations are for the official competition but his presence at the prestigious festival undoubtedly gives his film good visibility in the Medias, which should have positive consequences in terms of admissions.

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The only film which got better results than yours in Italy is Ridley Scott’s Les croisades.
Marco Tullio Giordana : Our distributor decided to add 50 more copies to the initial 200, mainly for multiplexes. I should also mention that in the big cities, the average income per copy is higher than what Scott’s film registered. So we have every reason to be happy.

What feedback did you get after the screenings in Cannes?
I know critics have mostly noticed how the film starts like a typical Italian comedy until the abrupt and dramatic return to reality. My film remains open ; there is no real conclusion at the end —on the contrary, the ending questions the spectator who is led to wonder what he or she would do in such a situation.

Your film La meglio gioventù [+see also:
film profile
was the 2003 winner of the Un Certain Regard section in Cannes. What are the differences between this film and the new one?

I think they are related. The Best of Youth was about the 90’s. In a way, Once You’re Born is The Best of Youth III. It describes the same kind of universe, full of moral issues.

I you could change something to the movie now, what would you change?
Before the final editing, I showed my film to some students, in several schools. They totally identified with young Sandro, the main character, and they were sure they too would make it without the grown-ups. I reckon a film must exist hic et nunc, that is, remain open and never end. Rome, Open City and The Bicycle Thief were not that successful when they were released. Yet, think how many people have seen them in the past 60 years !

How about immigration? Do you think there is a typically Italian form of guilt which also shows in Italian films?
For me, this is a legend we should get rid of once and for all: Italian people have never had that guilt complex, mainly because the catholic ritual of confession is part of our culture, as well as the fact that politically speaking, we really go with the flow. That is also what directors do: we only register the people’s beliefs and use them to make up characters. We are compassionate though ; in Italy, there is a kind of "communion" on the question of immigration, for in all Italian families, there is at least one member who has left the country and become an immigrant.

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