‘Life’ is Italo B.O. champ

Benigni pic earns $45 mil, besting Bertolucci's 'Tango'

PARIS — Roberto Benigni’s “Life Is Beautiful,” this year’s Oscar winner for best foreign language film, has earned worldwide box office of about $45 million, beating Bernardo Bertolucci’s “Last Tango in Paris” (1972), which took $43 million.

The third biggest Italian-made earner of all time was “Il Ciclone” (1996), a film which, despite failing to find release outside Italy, still made $39 million, according to a report in the French daily Liberation.

A whole batch of Italian films unknown outside that country were bigger earners than Fellini’s “La Dolce Vita” (1960), which came in 28th.

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