Rome Festival to Honor Italian Comic Actor Carlo Verdone

Carlo Verdone

The homage, which will include a screening of the documentary "Carlo!," is the first clue about this year's Rome lineup.

ROME – The International Rome Film Festival will dedicate a “special evening” to Italian actor, comic, director, and screenwriter Carlo Verdone, complete with the world premiere screening of Carlo!, a documentary about his career, Italian newspapers reported Thursday.

The homage to Verdone, who will turn 62 on the final day of the Nov. 9-17 Rome festival, is the first word about the lineup for this year’s festival, the first under the artistic direction of former Locarno and Venice artistic director Marco Mueller.

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Carlo! was made by television director Gianfranco Giagni and critic Fabio Ferzetti, a former head of the Venice Days sidebar at the Venice Film Festival. The film will screen in Rome's Prospettive Italia sidebar, exclusively for Italian films.

Verdone is seen in Italy as the comedic heir to Italian legend Alberto Sordi, who died in 2003. He has appeared in scores of popular Italian films, including In viaggio con papa (Journey With Papa) from 1982, in which he starred as Sordi’s adult son, 2006 comedy Il mio miglior nemico (My Best Enemy), and La grande bellezza (The Great Beauty), the highly-anticipated Rome-based drama from two-time Cannes jury prize winner Paolo Sorrentino.

Though Verdone is not well known outside Italy, he has been nominated for 24 David di Donatello prizes, Italy’s highest film honor, winning six.

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The Rome honor will be the second this year for Verdone at an Italian film festival: in June, Sicily’s Taormina Film Festival presented Verdone with a achievement prize. In Taormina, Verdone also co-hosted a Master Class with acting icon Sofia Loren.