Tuesday, 27 November 2018 11:06

Farewell to Maestro Bertolucci, "I received my 10th Oscar at Giffoni"

Bernardo Bertolucci, the director, writer and unforgettable producer of Italian cinema, passed away in Rome at the age of 77

In 1989 he received the Truffaut Award during the 19th edition of the Giffoni Film Festival

"Without rhetoric, what I received here in Giffoni is my 10th Oscar". With these words the maestro of Italian cinema Bernardo Bertolucci had commented, in 1989, the Truffuat Prize that had just been delivered to him during the 19th edition of the Giffoni Film Festival. A touched and emotional reference to the masterpiece "The Last Emperor", which only a year earlier, in 1988, had received as many as nine golden statuettes, including one for Best Director.

The unforgettable filmmaker passed away in Rome, at his home in Trastevere, at the age of 77, and Giffoni Experience wishes to remember him with the profound and meaningful words that he gave to Giffoni's audience 29 years ago: "It's a fascinating combination: the award given to me, which bears the name of the unforgettable Francois Truffaut, and the joy of the very young who can save Italian cinema”.

These considerations that the Maestro gave us back then were closely tied to his experience with cinema, and today, despite the technological and cultural changes of the last three decades, are an occasion for reflection: "Cinema is becoming a cemetery - declared Bertolucci -, the films must be seen in the hall, where it is possible to experience unrepeatable sensations and emotions, where it is possible and it is also beautiful to dream all together the same dream. I am against all forms of censorship but, as far as the youth are concerned, I believe that we must do everything possible so as not to violate their imagination. Therefore, for the world of children I do not speak of censorship but of protection”.

With these words full of emotion the director of Giffoni Experience, Claudio Gubitosi, wanted to remember the unforgettable filmmaker: "The nineteenth edition of the Festival that took place from July 29 to August 6, 1989 was certainly among the most intense for the participation of talents of very high level. It was the year of Gina Lollobrigida, Ettore Scola, Nanni Loy, Ben Gazzara and then Giancarlo Giannini, Carlo Verdone, Lina Wertmüller. Bernardo Bertolucci marked that time with his impressive cultural, cinematographic and historical depth. I remember the cordiality of our meeting, the relational simplicity, the kindness with which he welcomed the prize dedicated to François Truffaut, whom he knew well. Giffoni's evenings, at that time, took place in the town square and on the crowded stage filled with youth. He was very impressed by the public, attentive and respectful, and by the idea of ​​Giffoni. In the film festivals that I organized in the historic Cinema Valle, we all entertained discussions after watching movies like "The Conformist", "The Strategy of the Spider", "Last Tango in Paris". And then "Novecento", "La Luna”. In Giffoni Bertolucci arrived two years after making a memorable film as "The Last Emperor". Italy and the world lose one of the brightest and strongest minds ever. We have all grown up in the aftermath of '68 with his films that marked an entire generation”.

Bertolucci - born in Parma and the offspring of the poet Attilio Bertolucci - has created masterpieces such as "Novecento", "Tea in the desert", "Last tango in Paris", "I dance alone", "Little Buddha" and "The last emperor". His link with Pier Paolo Pasolini is very important, and he was also the director's assistant. In 2007 he was awarded the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the Venice Film Festival, and in 2011 the honorary Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival.