Benigni follows ‘Monster’

ROME — Popular Italian comic Roberto Benigni has begun pre-production on his first feature since his phenomenally successful 1994 release “The Monster.” Provisionally titled “Buongiorno Principessa,” the new pic will star and be directed by Benigni, who has consecutively broken national box office records with his most recent two films.

Executive producer Pacific Pictures has applied for authorization to take over an unused chemical plant in the central Italian town of Terni from April through September. A concentration camp circa 1938-40 will be constructed for the shoot, which is expected to last six weeks.

Current B.O. smash “The Cyclone” recently overtook the record grosses set by the Filmauro release “The Monster.” Benigni’s new feature, which is due for Christmas, will be released by Cecchi Gori, his distributor on the 1991 hit “Johnny Stecchino.”

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