Magazine article Variety

My First Time in Variety

Magazine article Variety

My First Time in Variety

Article excerpt

February 15,1967

"Monte Carlo TV: The Winners"

Liliana Cavani is a rarity among Italian directors: Throughout her career, she's worked with many international stars, including Charlotte Rampling and Dirk Bogarde in "The Night Porter" (1974); Mickey Rourke and Helena Bonham Carter in "Francesco" (1989); and John Malkovich in "Ripley's Game" (2002). Cavani's first mention in Variety was Feb. 15,1967, when her telefilm "Saint Francis of Assisi" won the UNDA Catholic Prize at the Inti. Monte Carlo TV Festival, nickvivareui

Do you remember winning that prize?

No, but I remember how important the Vatican was in getting state broadcaster RAI to put "Francis" on the air. Even though RAI produced it, they weren't going to air it, because Marco Bellocchio's "Fists in the Pocket," which also starred Ix>u Castel, had just been released. A right-wing politician had thundered in parliament that St. Francis could not have the same face as the (depraved) character Castel plays in Bellocchio's film. But the open-minded monsignor who headed the Vatican film office gave it the go-ahead.

You've now made three movies about St. Francis.

I'm not a religious person; I'm an atheist. But I was struck by the adventure of this kid, who 800 years ago had intuitions and an ecological vision that's ahead of its time even today. …

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