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Madrid, 5th Italian Film Festival

The Italian Film Festival in Madrid, which in terms of audience numbers and press interest is Spain’s most important event for the promotion of Italian film-making, has come to a close.

This year, the Festival’s events were held in the Italian Cultural Institute and in the Spanish capital’s Cinema Verdi.

Over 5000 film-goers attended free screenings of some outstanding examples of the spirit of renewal – and the robust good health – that characterise Italian film-making today. The films shown included ”Cesare deve morire” by Paolo and Vittorio Taviani, “La bella addormentata” by Marco Bellocchio, “Il comandante e la cicogna” by Silvio Soldini, “La citta’ ideale” by Luigi Lo Cascio, “La leggenda di Kaspar Hauser” by Davide Manuli, “Gli equilibristi” by Ivano De Matteo and “Posti in piedi in Paradiso” by Carlo Verdone.

Distinguished film-makers such as Paolo Taviani, Marco Bellocchio, Silvio Soldini, Luigi Lo Cascio, Ivano De Matteo and Carlo Verdone attended the Festival, along with musicians of the calibre of Gino Paoli and Danilo Rea. Piero Badaloni, journalist and creator of the documentary “Michelangelo e la Sistina. Storia di un capolavoro”, was present. Also attending the Festival was the writer Erri De Luca, who wrote the script for the short “Il turno di notte lo fanno le stelle”, directed by Edoardo Ponti.

Prize for the Taviani brothers

100 years from the birth of Michelangelo Antonioni, the Festival paid homage to the director with screenings of three documentaries (“Gente del Po”, “Sicilia” e “Lo sguardo di Michelangelo”). The Italian Ambassador to Spain, Leonardo Visconti di Modrone, also presented a “career” award to Paolo Taviani.

As is customary, the documentary and “short” sections took the form of competitions, judged by experts drawn from the Spanish film community.

The documentary prize went to “Terramatta” by Costanza Quatriglio, while “La nave dolce” by Daniele Vicari received a special mention. “Terra”, by Piero Messina, won the “short” prize.

Social media

More than 10,000 people followed the event through social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and the Festival’s official website ( To date, nearly 1000 people have downloaded the Festival app for tablets and smartphones, created by the Institute for the event with young people in mind.

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