Tonino Guerra, Screenwriter on ‘Amarcord’ and ‘Blow-Up,’ Dies at 92

During his 50-year-plus career, the Italian scribe and three-time Oscar nominee worked on 10 films with director Michelangelo Antonioni.

Tonino Guerra, the prolific Italian screenwriter who worked with Federico Fellini and Michelangelo Antonioni on such films as Amarcord and Blow-Up, died Wednesday at his home in northern Italy. He was 92.

Guerra, who penned more than 100 screenplays during a career that spanned more than a half-century, shared Oscar nominations for Mario Monicelli’s Casanova 70 (1965), Antonioni’s Blow-Up (1966) and Amarcord (1973), the Academy Award winner for best foreign-language film that he co-wrote with director Fellini.

In all, Guerra wrote or co-wrote for 10 Antonioni films — also including L'avventura (1960), Red Desert (1964) and Zabriskie Point (1970) — as well as Francesco Rosi’s Illustrious Corpses (1976), Andrey Tarkovsky’s Nostalghia (1983) and Theodoros AngelopoulosLandscape in the Mist (1988). The last film he wrote was 2008’s The Dust of Time, starring Willem Dafoe.

In 2011, the WGA West honored him with its Jean Renoir Award for Screenwriting Achievement, given to an international writer “who has advanced the literature of motion pictures and made outstanding contributions to the profession of screenwriter.”

“Tonino Guerra is by any standard one of the great writers of our times,” the WGAW's Howard Rodman said at the time of the announcement. “He is a breathtaking poet, a generous collaborator and is possessed of the largest heart.”

Guerra also received lifetime achievement awards from the Venice Film Festival in 1994, the European Film Awards in 2002 and Italy’s David di Donatello Awards in 2010.

In Tarkovsky: His God, His Devil, a documentary slated for release next year, filmmaker P.J. Letofsky talked to Guerra in 2009 about working with the Russian director and their collaboration on Nostalghia.

Watch the video here:


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