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Alice nella città, independent section of the Rome Film Festival, unveiled the line-up of its 15th edition, that will take place from October 26 to November 5, 2017. The hottest news came at the very last minute and it couldn’t even be included in the press release: actor Orlando Bloom will attend the festival and will hold a masterclass linked to his latest role in the film Romans. Another masterclass, already announced in the past few days, will be held by actress Dakota Johnson. This year’s edition looks extremely rich, complex and multi-layered, also on a thematic level. Artistic Director Gianluca Giannelli states: “The coming-of-age as a topic will be present, but we’ll also deal with the female perspective and the connection with the publishing world. Generally speaking, films won’t be ‘soft’. The protagonists are young adults who don’t want to stay within the rules, and our audience is mature enough to engage with true stories and problematic issues. We’ll tackle the theme of mutation, both in a fantastic and a realist way. No Italian titles are featured in our competition, because we wanted to go towards films that are not willing to ‘protect’ our boys by avoiding taboos. To the contrary, we looked for topics that could stimulate their need for complexity.”

Many Italian films are featured instead in the other sections. Panorama Italia (in collaboration with Kino) is specifically dedicated to Italian cinema. Its line-up include: Ulisse Lendaro’s L’età imperfetta, Bindu De Stoppani’s Cercando Camille, Gabriele Gravagna’s Io sono qui, Fuori sede by Mario Scandale, Raffaele Bartoli, Carmelo Alù, Lorenzo Collati under the supervision of Sergio Rubini, Italo-French production Lola + Jeremy by Julie Hygreck, Antonio Padovan’s Finché c’è prosecco c’è speranza, Fulvio Risuleo’s Look Up. The Opening Film is Cosimo Messeri’s Metti una notte starring Amanda Lear and Cristiana Capotondi. The Closing film is Si muore tutti democristiani [lit. We’ll All Die as Demo-Christians], big-screen debut of the web-star collective Terzo segreto di satira (Pietro Belfiore, Davide Bonacina, Andrea Fadenti, Andrea Mazzarella, Davide Rossi).

The short film selection include Peter Marcias Strollica, Marco Spagnoli’s Sweet Heart, Federico Zampaglione’s Una serata speciale, Paolo Strippoli’s Fine d’estate and, for the MigrArti project, Guido Lombardi’s La recita, Michele Cinque’s Jululu, Gabriel Ladera’s A mio padre, Alessio Tamborini’s Figli maestri. Moreover, the section will screen four shorts directed by film students of the RUFA – Rome University of Fine Arts.

As Special Events, the long-awaited debut for YouTubers The Jackal, the sci-fi comedi Addio fottuti musi verdi, and Marco Danieli’s Luce propria, on the fight of a free girl against a terrible degenerative illness. TV series will have their space too with Paolo Colangeli’s Camorriste, an event organized for the Day of Legality. Among the films in the Young | Adult competition, the animated feature The Breadwinner by Nora Twomey, produced by the Irish Cartoon Saloon (Song of the Sea) and based on the book by Deborah Ellis. The film tells the story of Parvana, a young girl living in Afghanistan under the dictatorship of the Talibans. In order to work and help the family, Parvana disguise herself in male clothes. 

Other selected films are based on books: the supernatural thriller The Changeover by Miranda Hancourt and Stuart McKenzy (from Margaret Mahy’s novel of the same name), and And Then I Go by Vincent Grashaw (from Jim Shepard’s Project X). Out of competition is Graciela Rodriguez Gilio's and Charlie Mainard’s Beyond the Sun, a work strongly supported by Pope Francis who, for the first time in the history of the Church, takes part in the film. The film tells the adventures of five children belonging to different worlds and cultures.

The line-up also features more classical and easy titles, for instance David Soren’s Capitan Mutanda. Paddington 2 will be the protagonist of a fund-raising première in collaboration with the association Everychildismychild supported by actress Anna Foglietta. Olaf, the funny snowman from Disney masterpiece Frozen, is back with short film Frozen – The Adventures of Olaf, which will be released theatrically for Christmas.

The recipient of the Golden Camera – Taodue Award for the best new director will be selected among the 14 films in competition. Chaired by Trudie Styler, the jury is composed by Barbora Bobulova, Zoe Cassavetes, Marco Danieli, Andrea Delogu, Nicola Guaglianone, and Camilla Nesbitt. Taodue Managing Director Camilla Nesbitt states: “Celebrating this year its sixth edition, the Golden Camera – Taodue Award confirms its support to emerging talents and, also thanks to an international jury, wishes to offer a broad gaze on the current cinematic landscape, and a concrete support to the cinema of tomorrow.”

Animated feature Mazinga Z – Infinity, starring the world famous robot created by Go Nagai, is in the line-up too. A number of special ‘ambassadors’ will accompany the film on the red carpet: Gabriele Mainetti – who took inspiration from Go Nagai’s world for his They Call Me Jeeg; Roberto Recchioni – editorial curator of Dylan Dog since 2013; Dario Moccia –  youtuber known the series I Love Nerd Cultura dedicated to comics, manga and animation; J-POP Manga – leading Milan-based publishing house devoted to Japanese comics.

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ROMA 2017

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