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Disney+ has commenced production on Italian original series “The Lions of Sicily,” a family saga based on Stefania Auci’s bestseller “The Florios of Sicily.”

Principal photography has started in Rome and will take place between there and Sicily. It is directed by Paolo Genovese (“Superheroes”).

Set between 1800 and 1861, the eight-part series follows the Florio family where brothers Paolo and Ignazio are two small spice merchants who have escaped from a Calabria stuck in the past and in search of social redemption. In Sicily they invent a future, turning a small, run-down shop into a flourish business activity that young Vincenzo, with his revolutionary ideas, will transform into an economic empire. However, overwhelming Vincenzo’s life and that of the entire family is the disruptive arrival of Giulia, a strong and intelligent woman who is in contrast with the rigid rules of the society of the time.

The series is produced by Francesco and Federico Scardamaglia for Compagnia Leone Cinematografica (“La fuggitiva”) and Raffaella Leone and Marco Belardi of Lotus Production (“The Land of Dreams”). It is written by Ludovica Rampoldi (“The Traitor”) and Stefano Sardo (“1994”).

“After the success of ‘The Ignorant Angels,’ we are pleased to announce a new all-Italian project that once again boasts a great director, with Paolo Genovese, and a first-rate cast,” said Daniel Frigo, country manager for The Walt Disney Company Italy. “ ‘The ‘Lions Of Sicily’ confirms Disney+’s commitment to create Italian contents that enrich and make the already wide and varied offer of the platform unique.”

The series stars Michele Riondino (“Fidelity”), Miriam Leone (“Diabolik”), Donatella Finocchiaro (“Upside Down”), Vinicio Marchioni (“Vicini di casa”), Eduardo Scarpetta (“The Ignorant Angels”), Paolo Briguglia (“Padri”), Ester Pantano (“Màkari”) and Adele Cammarata (“Elementi”).