Directors' message: When at RomaCinemaFest, think globally

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Count Milos Forman and Jonathan Demme among those who want the RomaCinemaFest to maintain its international flavor.

It would be "ridiculous to scale back this kind of event," Forman said in an interview in Monday's edition of La Repubblica. Dem-me, meanwhile, called the Rome event "fantastic," adding that it has quickly become a festival where "international directors, not only American directors, feel at home."

During the weekend, Italian newspapers were filled with news of Rome Mayor Gianni Alemanno's plans to reshape the Rome festival into a largely Italian event. In particular, he singled out George Clooney, Nicole Kidman and Leonardo DiCaprio as stars who cost more than they were worth to bring to the festival.

Alemanno backtracked a bit Monday, saying that he intended to write a letter to the U.S. ambassador, explaining that he had no beef with Hollywood stars or films. But there was no indication that plans to make the fest more of a local affair had changed.

One of the new changes being floated is the possibility of combining the October festival with April's David di Donatello awards, Italy's most important film honor. But it was not immediately clear whether the festival would shift to April or the Dona-tellos would move to October. (partialdiff)
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