This article originally appeared in
November 10, 2007
Rome fest responds to Moretti's
By ERIC J. LYMAN
ROME -- Italian auteur and first-year Turin Film Festival creative director
Nanni Moretti was looking for greater visibility when he blasted the
two-year-old RomaCinemaFest, one of the Rome event's directors said
Moretti attracted headlines Wednesday when he used the press briefing
announcing the lineup for the Nov. 23-Dec. 1 Turin festival as a forum to
attack the RomaCinemaFest, the just-finished festival in Moretti's hometown.
Among other things, Moretti said that Rome's choice of a date midway
between much more established festivals in Venice (which celebrated its
64th edition in September) and Turin (about to hold its 25th edition) proved
the young Rome festival was looking for trouble.
"I am not looking for problems, but I am looking at the calendar, and when
Rome picks a date that's one month after Venice and one month before
Turin it means they want a competition," Moretti said.
According to Mario Sesti, Rome's co-director in charge of the well-regarded
Extra sidebar, Moretti may not have been looking for problems, but what he
was looking for was attention.
"I'm sorry that Moretti has been limited to attacking the RomaCinemaFest as
a way to attract more visibility," Sesti said in a statement, adding that the
53-year-old Palme d'Or-winning director turned aggressive because he is
"unable to cooperate."
The exchange could be the start of a war of words between Turin and Rome
-- the sites of Italy's first two film studios from the early 1900s, respectively --
just as a series of clashes between Venice and Rome appear to have
Last year, Venice and Rome traded barbs over the timing of several key
announcements and Rome's choice of a start date, which Venice said was
too close to Venice's finish. But Rome moved its start back five days for its
second edition, and officials from all three festivals met late in 2006 and
said they agreed to co-exist in peace. But that agreement, Moretti said on
Wednesday, had left him unconvinced.
"Turin, Venice, and Rome agreed last year to work together and for a few
months that's what I said, that the festivals do not compete, that they have
different identities," Moretti said. "But the truth is, this bothers me."