Shooting on 'Reason' to start in April
In a rare China-Italy co-production, Italo multi-hyphenate Maria Grazia Cucinotta (“Il Postino”) has teamed up with China’s Beijing Ciwen Film and TV Prods. on a romantic comedy in which she will also star.Shooting on the pic, which has the working title “C’e sempre un perche” (There Is Always a Reason), will start next month in Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province. It will then move to Sicily, where regional funds are in place. Cucinotta, who forged ties to China as juror of the Shanghai Film Festival last year, will play an Italian innkeeper who becomes entangled with a Chinese man. A-list Chinese talent is still being finalized, as is pic’s helmer, who is likely to be Italian. Cucinotta’s Rome-based Seven Dreams is producing “Reason” with Beijing Ciwen, the studio behind Tsui Hark’s martial arts epic, “Seven Swords.” A former Bond girl in “The World Is Not Enough,” Cucinotta more recently starred in Alfonso Arau’s “The Trick in the Sheet,” which she also produced. Meanwhile, attesting to Cucinotta’s growing activity as a producer, shooting started Monday in Rome on helmer Federico Zampaglione’s “Tulpa,” a high-profile giallo — the Italian thriller genre — starring A-listers Claudia Gerini and Michele Placido, also produced by Seven Dreams.