Bruce Springsteen, Quincy Jones, Clint Eastwood, Oliver Stone and Martin Scorsese are all to feature in Giuseppe Tornatore’s ambitious new feature documentary on the legendary Italian composer ‘Maestro’ Ennio Morricone (whose scores include Once Upon a Time in America and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly). Metallica band members, ex-Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters and Dire Straits’ Mark Knopfler and Celine Dion are also set to appear.
The feature doc is being produced by Gianni Russo and Gabriele Costa of Italian production company Piano B in collaboration with Dutch producer San Fu Maltha and Peter De Maegd of Belgian production company Potemkino. It was one of the projects presented at the IDFA Forum earlier this week and is already provoking huge interest among both theatrical distributors and broadcasters.
Oscar-winning director Tornatore has worked many times with Morricone, on films from Cinema Paradiso to The Legend of 1900 and Malena (which made a star of Monica Bellucci). Tornatore has already filmed extensive interview material of more than 14 hours with the composer and has spoken with many of his Italian contemporaries, Bernardo Bertolucci, Dario Argento, and Marco Bellocchio among them. Springsteen was interviewed in Rome. One of Morricone’s concerts was also shot. What remains is to speak to Morricone’s international collaborators and admirers and also to shoot the fictional reconstructions of Morricone’s childhood and of his friendship with Sergio Leone, king of the spaghetti westerns.
Last week, Morricone celebrated his 89th birthday. The filmmakers are striving to complete the film in time for his 90th birthday, which falls on 10 November 2018, and are hoping to have it ready for next year’s Venice Film Festival.
Maestro Morricone is being put together as an Italian-Belgian co-production. The international interviews are due to be shot in February and the fictional elements will be filmed in Berlin in the spring. Distributors already aboard include Periscoop (Benelux), Lucky Red (Italy) and NonStop (Scandinavia.) San Fu Maltha reported strong interest from British broadcasters. A sales agent is expected to be appointed shortly.