Pinocchio, Written by Carlo Colody, is one of the most loved books by children around the world, has been translated into more than 280 languages and dialects, and has been the subject of numerous film and television series. When the Italian director Matteo Coron Decided to give its explanation Pinocchio, A film released on Christmas Day in the United States, he followed an unusual path, i.e. he was true to the original book, The Adventures of Pinocchio, Published in 1883.
The result is a very realistic, sometimes dark, story. None of the cute cats, goldfish and crane watches that animated the 1940s Disney version.
But Caron inserted his Pinocchio into the context of Tuscany in the mid-19th century – and poverty – in such a precise way that when the film enters the wonderful realm – which often happens – it seems unthinkable.
After all, Kolodie, whose real name is Carlo Lorenzini, wrote this book as a story that was written as a lesson in life. Initially his short story was published in chapters in the children’s magazine, and Kolodie ended the toy adventures abruptly after the 15th chapter, when Pinocchio was hanged from a tree. When readers spoke out against this decision, Kolodie’s author made him prolong the story, with its many visits and journeys, to a happy conclusion.
For the American people, it should come as no surprise that Karon is entering the realm of fantasy. The director is best known for the 2008 series Gomorrah, which investigates organized crime with Neapolitan, described by the Times critic as a “snapshot of hell.”
In fact, Caron has already ventured into the world of fairy tales, a mix of stories collected by a 17th-century Neapolitan writer in his 2015 film The Tale of Tales. Giampattista BasilThis, in turn, affected the Brothers Grimm. Karon shows great interest in his work as a painter.
But Pinocchio is a different matter. The story of the toy who wants to become a real boy has sparked the imagination of many directors, sometimes with unexpected results. Pinocchio traveled to space, became Shrek’s companion, and showed the worst side in a dark film in 1995. But there was no sign of the story’s declining popularity. Disney version with Tom Hanks Should be launched on the company’s streaming service Guillermo del Toro He is working on a film about Pinocchio for Netflix.
According to 52-year-old Karon, she inspired him to create his first so-called storyboard, a comic version he produced when he was five or six years old, which he had in front of his desk in a sketch. .
“When you were a kid you were a clean man, and it was hard to find an adult in the things you do,” he said in an interview in his studio’s Rome office. “I always have drawing in front of me as a model”. Below, excerpts from the interview.
There are several versions of Pinocchio’s cinema. Why do more?
As I re-read the book, as an adult, I noticed that there were many things I no longer remember, especially many things I had not seen in many editions for cinema. So, if I’m surprised to read the story again, I can make a movie about a book that people think they know, but not really. It was a big bet, it surprised people, but it was as true as possible to the book.
Does it also mean emphasizing the poverty of rural Italy in the 19th century and being faithful to the atmosphere of the original book?
In Kolody’s story you feel hungry, poverty. Much research was done during the making of the film. We focused more on realism, but at the same time there is a summary of what happens in a myth, which is one of the things that fascinated me the most while reading the book. (Caron showed a large storyboard of the film, with handwritten notes, photographs from that period, pictures of ghosts and copies of the original Pinocchio maps created by Enrico Massandi.) For each scene we explore notes and illustrations aimed at recreating the atmosphere of that world. Part of the story was filmed in Tuscany, and then we moved to Apulia because Tuscany has changed a lot in the last century, and I wanted to truly portray the agricultural environment of the late 19th century.
Roberto Benigni plays the carpenter Cepetto in the film, who actually made his own film about Pinocchio in 2002, in which he plays a puppet. Why did you climb it?
He is Roberto Cepetto in the sense that he is a witness to a missing Italy. Roberto came from a farming family living in extreme poverty and he knew what hunger was. So there is no one better than him to give this character credibility and humanity. It was a great fortune to have him.
In the book, Pinocchio is often an unbearable person. His Pinocchio, played by Federico Ilapi, is very sweet. Because?
I tried to soften your personality. At first, he clearly makes a lot of mistakes, which is annoying. But I tried to mitigate this aspect based on the innocence of the boy playing him, which is the direct opposite of Pinocchio. We know that Pinocchio always wants to escape responsibilities and difficulties and is always looking for happiness. But Federico showed the will and discipline to sit for four hours every day, while Mark Coolier did his makeup. Federico was extraordinary and made the character very desirable.
Is there a contemporary message in the film?
Kolody wanted the book to be academic, with the goal of educating children about the dangers of the world around them and their violence. More true today than ever. I kept thinking about Kolody while making the film. We know the story takes place in the 19th century, but there was a sense that it was filming a story connected to the present. I remember when I started researching for the film and met the grandson of the original author of Pinocchio. We had lunch together, he said: “Pinocchio is a tough book because he always runs”. I replied, “Yes, it’s true, but I do not want to catch him. I want to run after him and see how far he can take me.” This is the approach I followed. / Teresinha Martino Translation