Vivo Film, the Italian shingle at Berlin with Abel Ferrara’s “Siberia,” has a robust slate in various stages including the next drama by Laura Bispuri, whose “Sworn Virgin” and “Daughter of Mine” both launched from the Berlinale.
Bispuri later this year will shoot her third feature, which is currently titled “Di Lotta e D’Amore” (“Of Battle and Love”), a love story between two teen girls set against the backdrop of squatters’ houses and other spaces occupied by both Italians and immigrants on Rome’s outskirts. She is working with her regular writer Laura Manieri.
The Rome-based indie headed by Marta Donzelli and Gregorio Paonessa — which has the distinction of being the Italian company that landed the most Berlin lineup slots in recent years — has several other new pics by emerging Italian directors in the pipeline.
“Miss Marx” — Susanna Nicchiarelli, whose “Nico, 1988,” about the late German chanteuse who sang with the Velvet Underground won best film in the 2017 Venice Film Festival’s Horizons, is in post on this tale of Karl Marx’s youngest daughter, Eleanor, played by Romola Garai. Eleanor was an activist, translator and writer, and one the first women to approach the themes of feminism and socialism and who was swept up in a tragic love story. The English-language costumer, partly shot at Rome’s Cinecittà studios, is expected to soon surface on the festival circuit. Celluloid Dreams is selling.
“Non Mi Uccidere” — Andrea De Sica, who directed Netflix’s teen series “Baby,” is set to start shooting in April on this horror film with a teen romancer twist about a 19-year-old named Mirta, who, with her older lover, Robin, dies of a drug overdose. She then recovers alone to find out that in order to continue living, and cherishing the memory of Robin’s love, she must eat living humans. The film, title of which translates as “Don’t Kill Me,” is based on books by late cult author Chiara Palazzolo that have potential for a trilogy. De Sica has been working on the screenplay with the same collective of young Italian screenwriters, called the Grams, who created “Baby,” and with veteran Italian writer and producer Gianni Romoli. Casting is being kept under wraps.
“Welcome Venice” — Andrea Segre (“Li and the Poet”) will shoot this Venice-set drama about two Venetian brothers who come into conflict over the use of their family home — one wants to turn it into a bed-and-breakfast to exploit tourism. The film will show “a totally unexplored side of Venice,” said Paonessa. Vivo Film is co-producing alongside Iole film, which is the lead producer.