Woody Allen film has world premiere in Rome
'Always been enormous admirer of Italian cinema' says Allen17 April, 16:02
(ANSA) - Rome - American film director Woody Allen had the world premiere for his new film, To Rome with Love, in the Italian capital and he called the movie an homage to classic Italian cinema.
"I have always been an enormous admirer of Italian cinema," said Allen. "Anything that happens in the movie that is redolent of Italian cinema is simply something that I have absorbed through osmosis over the years".
Allen's latest work was shot in Italy's capital city last summer and features a star-studded cast including Penelope Cruz, Alec Baldwin and Judy Davis along with Roberto Benigni and fellow Italian actors Antonio Albanese and Alessandra Mastronardi.
Allen himself appears on the screen for the first time since his 2006 film Scoop.
The work was initially said to be a 21st-century take on Giovanni Boccaccio's medieval collection of erotic love tales, The Decameron. It is made up of four vignettes, including one where Allen plays a retired film director who tries to launch the career of a man who sings opera incredibly well but only in the shower. Another features Benigni as a man who wakes up one day to find he has inexplicably become famous and becomes hounded by the paparazzi.
"He's one of the most important figures of the century," Benigni said of Allen, comparing him as an artist to Matisse. "After Penelope Cruz and Ellen Page, I am the most beautiful of the cast," he quipped. "(Allen) chose me for my beauty, I'm sure. My apologies to Mr. Baldwin and Mr. Eisenberg". Allen also used the opportunity to comment on dubbing films, a common practice in Italy and elsewhere in Europe.
"I don't like dubbing at all. Americans aren't used to it," he said. "Having said that, the man who dubbed for me for years in Italy made me into a hero. It was his voice everyone liked.
I'm not sure if they had heard my own voice they would have been that responsive".