Malaioli, Grimaldi dominate Donatello noms

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ROME -- Murder mystery "La Ragazza del Lago" (The Girl by the Lake), the debut film from Andrea Malaioli, and Antonio Grimaldi's "Caos Calmo" (Quiet Chaos), a story about a man's behavior after his wife dies, dominated the nominee list for the David di Donatello awards, to be awarded April 18.

Each film was nominated in at least six major categories, with Malaioli in the unusual position of being nominated as both best director and best new director.

Malaioli's film, which premiered last year in Venice, tells the tale of a detective from northern Italy brought in to solve a murder in a tranquil town. The film was also nominated for best film, with Sandro Petgraglia nominated for best screenplay, Nicola Giuliano and Francesca Cima earning best producer nominations for their work on the film, and protagonists Anna Bonaiuto and Donatello regular Toni Servillo were nominated for the top two acting prizes.

"Caos Calmo," which starred and was co-written by noted Italian auteur Nanni Moretti, was also nominated as best film. Grimaldi got a nom for best director, Moretti and co-writers Laura Paolucci and Francesco Piccolo were nominated for screenplay, Domenico Procacci for producer and Moretti for best actor. The film's international premiere took place this year in competition in Berlin.

Other films nominated for the best film prize were Silvio Soldini's drama "Giorni e Nuvole" (Days and Clouds), "La Giusta Distanza" (The Right Distance) from Carlo Mazzacurati, and Giorgio Diritti's "Il Vento da il suo Giro" (The Wind Blows Round), which was completed in 2005 but released in Italy only last year.

Cristina Comencini's interracial love story "Bianco e Nero" (Black and White) earned her a best director nomination along with Molaioli, Grimaldi, Mazzacurati and Soldini.

Diritti joined Molaioli among the best new director nominees. Others selected in that category were Gabrielle Muccino's younger brother Silvio, a well-known Italian actor, for his work on "Parlami d'Amore" (Speak to Me about Love), Marco Martani for "Cemento Armato" (Armored Cement), and Fabrizio Bentivoglio's "Lascia Perdere, Johnny!" (Forget About It, Johnny!).

Oscar winner "No Country for Old Men" from Joel and Ethan Coen led the nominees for best foreign film. Other nominees were "There Will be Blood" from Paul Thomas Anderson, Paul Haggis' "In the Valley of Elah" and "Into the Wild" from Sean Penn. Two of the films -- "In the Valley of Elah" (Venice) and "Into the Wild" (Rome) -- had their European premieres in Italy.
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