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Venice fest stages Moscow event

Mueller takes six Italian films to Russia

ROME — The Venice Film Festival is forging a close rapport with Russia through a “Festival of Italian Cinema: from Venice to Moscow” event to be hosted by Lido topper Marco Mueller.

Mueller, who will hold a masterclass on contempo Italian cinema, will be bringing six Italo titles that preemed on the Lido last year to the five-day showcase, which starts Wednesday in Moscow. His selection has, in most cases, an intrinsic Russian link.

For example, the “Venice to Moscow” lineup includes Valerio Mieli’s Venice and Moscow-set romancer “Ten Winters,” touted as the first Italo-Russian film co-production ever; Giuseppe Capotondi’s thriller “The Double Hour,” starring Russian thesp Ksenia Rappoport; and Susanna Nicchiarelli’s “Cosmonaut,” a coming-of-ager about two young Italo siblings taken with the myth of communist Russia and its space missions in the 1960s.

The opener will be Giuseppe Tornatore’s Sicilian epic “Baaria,” which also opened Venice.

Revered Russian auteur Alexandr Sokurov is expected to attend the event, both as writer/contributor to Italo scribe-helmer Elisabetta Sgarbi’s docu “Deserto Rosa — Luigi Ghirri,” and, more significantly, as helmer of Russian docu “Reading Book of Blockade,” about survivors of the Leningrad siege during World War II.

“Book of Blockade,” which world preemed in Venice, will be bowing to a Russian aud.

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