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PRODUCTION / FUNDING Italy / US

End of filming for Edoardo Ponti’s The Life Ahead

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- The lead actress in the film shot in Puglia is Sophia Loren, taking on the role played by Simone Signoret in the adaptation of the famous eponymous novel by Romain Gary

End of filming for Edoardo Ponti’s The Life Ahead
Sophia Loren in The Life Ahead (© Greta de Lazzaris)

Sophia Loren, icon of international cinema who will turn 85 years old in September, is the lead in Edoardo Ponti’s The Life Ahead, which just finished filming. The director (Loren’s son) has shot his third film in Puglia during around 6 weeks, mostly between Bari and Trani.

The Life Ahead transposes to the present day one of the most famous French novels of the 20th century. In 1975, author Gary won with this novel — written under the pseudonym Émile Ajar — his second Prix Goncourt. The novel became an international best-seller, translated all over the world. Moshé Mizrahi’s film adaptation starring Simone Signoret won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film in 1978.

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The script of the Italian version was written by Ugo Chiti and Edoardo Ponti, and is set in the city of Bari, where Madame Rosa, an elderly Jewish woman and former prostitute, reluctantly accepts to take care of Momo, a turbulent 12-year-old from the streets and of Senegalese origins. The two of them are different in every way, which is why they relationship is very confrontational at first. Yet unexpectedly, it will transform into a profound friendship. The two will in fact soon realise that they are kindred spirits, bound by a common destiny that will forever change their lives. Supporting Sophia Loren is the young Ibrahima Gueye in the role of Momo. The cast also features Renato Carpentieri, Massimiliano Rossi, Babak Karimi and Abril Zamora.

The cinematography is handled by New Yorker Angus Hudson (who worked on Star Wars - The Last Jedi, Cashback, Assassin’s Creed); the set design is by Maurizio Sabatini (who has worked with Giuseppe Tornatore several times); costumes are designed by Ursula Patzak (with Mario Martone for We Believed [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Mario Martone
interview: Mario Martone
film profile
]
, Leopardi [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Mario Martone
film profile
]
and the upcoming The Mayor of Rione Sanità [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Mario Martone
film profile
]
), hair by Enzo Angileri, (hair stylist in Hollywood for stars such as Charlize Theron and Jodie Foster); makeup by the French Frédérique Foglia (Lucy [+see also:
trailer
making of
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]
, The Sisters Brothers [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jacques Audiard
film profile
]
, My Brilliant Friend).

The Life Ahead is produced by Palomar, Impact Partners, Artemis Rising Foundation, Foothills Productions, Another Chapter Productions, Scone Investments, in collaboration with Macaia Film, with support from the Fondazione Apulia Film Commission.

(Translated from Italian)

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