Thursday, November 11, 2010

RIP Dino De Laurentiis

JA from MNPP here. When I think of the name Dino De Laurentiis my mind instantly flashes to a bunch of much beloved cheese-fests from the 70s and 80s - Barbarella, the two Conan movies, Flash Gordon. But the man did it all, from Nights of Cabiria to Army of Darkness.

I don't know anything about his personal life but he's one of those legendary movie-men whose names become as big as the very big movies that they make. He won the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award in 2001, on top of a statue for La strada in 1957. He was 91 years old.

What's your favorite movie of his?


Volvagia said...

I'd actually say Army of Darkness, but it's the only one of his I've actually seen. On the subject of producers: The relationship between producers and involved and artistic writer-directors (the best possible definition of an actual auteur) must be difficult. Think about it: Auteur writes a script. Due to a special status with the studio (there's no point if nothing they make gets critical respect), they get a budget. The budgt isn't enough. The script gets re-formulated to lower the cost. Studio head may be peeved because it cuts the part of the script. Auteur says: "Give me a bit more and I can just barely manage it." Am I close?

stjeans said...

without any doubt:
''Barbarella'' aaaaaaaaaaa... Jane Fonda & that accent classic!

adri said...

I like "Bound" with Jennifer Tilly and Gina Gershon; "Marie" with Sissy Spacek; and of course the Conan movies. I've never seen "Serpico", but heard that it's one of Al Pacino's best performances.

De Laurentiis really had a wide range of movies as a producer - I think that's kind of cool.

Jason Adams said...

I've been looking around at news about him today and had completely forgotten when I posted this that he was the guy that Meryl Streep caught dissing her in Italian when she tried out for the Jessica Lange role in King Kong.

"She tells Entertainment Weekly magazine, "He said, 'Why did you send me this pig? This woman is so ugly... so I looked at him and I said, 'I'm very sorry that I disappoint you.' He was so used to treating girls like bimbos (and) never imagined that a blonde person could speak Italian."

De Laurentiis has denied Streep's story, insisting he did meet with the actress about another film project - but the encounter was nothing like the one the actress describes."

Stefano said...

My favorite films of his is surely "Blue Velvet". But he has produced a lot of classics of Italian cinema of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s, working with many of our greatest directors (Fellini, De Sica, Monicelli, Rossellini, Risi, Visconti and many others...)

Volvagia said...

Forgot that, but: I still stand by Army of Darkness. Lynch: He could have found another producer. Raimi's Evil Dead Threequel: It needed an utter madman of a producer. For the riskiness and the testment it offers to the man, that's the film people should play in DeLaurentiss retrospectives. One no other studio or producer would have dared touch.

Simon said...

La Strada, definitely.

Anonymous said...

Army of Darkness and La Strada! What's that? I have to pick one? What is this, Sophie's Choice?