Orson Welles

DCP. D.: 4’ (estratto, dai 12’ conservati). Bn.

T. it.: Italian title. T. int.: International title. T. alt.: Alternative title. Sog.: Story. Scen.: Screenplay. F.: Cinematography. M.: Editing. Scgf.: Set Design. Mus.: Music. Int.: Cast. Prod.: Production Company. L.: Length. D.: Running Time. f/s: Frames per second. Bn.: Black e White. Col.: Color. Da: Print source

Film Notes

Portrait of Gina/Viva Italia has a strange construction: it lasts thirty minutes, and the actress does not appear on the screen until the very end for an exchange with the director that lasts only four minutes. From the material in question, we can tell that the meeting actually lasted a little bit longer and that Welles decided not to mention a number of things, placing Lollobrigida in the background but using her image to describe a specific period of Italian society and, as was his habit, present his very personal vision of the world. The numerous clapperboards reveal more than the documentary itself, providing an appetizing background for this unique encounter: Lollobrigida – really angry with the Italian tax authorities – appears maternal, sweet and naive while Welles – sometimes talking in perfect Italian – jokes bitterly, questioning like a beating drum just to have the answer he expects. From the clapperboards it appears that the cameraman was a certain Bava… Part of the Welles archive of Cinemazero (kept at the Archivio Cinema del Friuli Venezia Giulia/La Cineteca del Friuli) are also other working materials of Portrait of Gina/Viva Italia, with interviews of Rossano Brazzi, Vittorio De Sica, Anna Gruber and Saul Steinberg’s drawings. Riccardo D. Costantini

Riccardo D. Costantini

2K scan from 35mm print by Cinemazero