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Cinema Italian Style Showcases ‘Bad,’ Other Films

Cinema Italian Style will once again celebrate Italian filmmakers and actors in Los Angeles, with Paolo Sorrentino as the centerpiece of two events on the eve of the five-day mini-festival.

On Nov. 11, Sorrentino will appear with his Cannes player “Youth” at the Egyptian. He will also participate in “The Music of Cinema: A Conversation With Paolo Sorrentino and Michael Caine,” chatting with the star of “Youth,” his English-language film. It is part of a partnership with the AFI Fest.

The next day, the 11th annual Cinema Italian Style officially kicks off. It’s an annual showcase of Italian films running till Nov. 16 at the Egyptian and Aero theaters.

Presented by the American Cinematheque and Luce Cinecittà, Cinema Italian Style has the blessing of the Italian consulate in Los Angeles and a host of other Italian orgs.

Other highlights include “Latin Lover,” “The Wait” and “Don’t Be Bad,” Italy’s foreign-language Oscar entry, directed by Claudio Caligari, who died in May. The five-day tour of Italy features 10 films and multiple shorts.

Along with the screenings, guests can mingle with directors Sorrentino, Francesca Archibugi (“An Italian Name”), Piero Messina (“The Wait”) and Maria Sole Tognazzi (“Me, Myself and Her”), as well as filmmakers Alessandro Borghi, Luca Marinelli and Valerio Mastandrea of “Don’t Be Bad.”

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Mastandrea, a producer, actor and Caligari’s longtime friend, says “Don’t Be Bad” sets itself apart from previous Italian submissions in a big way. “I think it’s probably the first time that an independent Italian movie runs for the Oscar. It could be a strong signal for our industry. From a production point of view, our film has inside many of the contradictions of the last 30 years of making cinema in our country.”

Mastandrea, who starred in Caligari’s second feature, produced the film; he says he even reached out to Martin Scorsese for funds. Caligari died at age 67 on May 26, soon after shooting was finished.

“It is a great honor being part of a race like this mostly because the whole story of ‘Don’t Be Bad’ seems to be magical and full of constant surprises day by day, and the Italian nomination for the Oscar is one of them,” says Mastandrea.

Cinema Italian Style closes Nov. 16 with Cannes Jury Prize winner, Nanni Moretti’s “My Mother.”

The series is overlapping with a new Seattle event, running Nov. 12-19.

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