L'arrivo di Wang: the "drawing-room sci-fi" which is attracting attention from Hollywood
by Vittoria Scarpa
09/03/2012 - "We feel a bit like good baseball players in a country where they only play football". That is how Marco Manetti, who together with his brother Antonio forms the directing couple of genre cinema Manetti Bros. (photo), describes the imminent release of their new film, L'arrivo di Wang [trailer], centred around an alien who arrives on Earth and only speaks Chinese. After having entertained audiences at the latest Venice Film Festival (see the news), and having toured several international film festivals, the film comes out in Italian cinemas today with Iris Film, and is in fact the most unusual thing on Italy's current production landscape: a science-fiction film.
"Drawing-room sci-fi" is the helpful definition given by its protagonist, Ennio Fantastichini. Having been shot with a low budget, practically all in one room, the film "is not an American-style sci-fi", confirms Marco Manetti, "here special effects are used in a human dimension". "I think this is the first film in which an alien can be seen so clearly", his brother echoes Antonio, "the room is very well lit, the shots are long". All thanks to Simone Silvestri and Vito Picchinenna's Palantir Digital Media, which in little over a year gave life to this creature, similar to a big octopus, modelled on the actor Li Yong in 3D.
A European-style sci-fi, you could say, but one which did not fail to attract the attention of Hollywood: "Some studios are calling us but nothing is official yet", hints Marco, sarcastically avoiding an explanation as to whether there's a remake in the pipeline or a new, cross-Atlantic Manetti brothers film. Meanwhile, L'arrivo di Wang will be out in the UK in July with Peccadillo Pictures. And the two brothers will be returning to cinemas in September already with a new film, currently in post-production: horror-thriller L'ombra dell'orco, distributed by Medusa. "A genre which is perhaps closer to the demands of the Italian market", Marco observes with a half-smile, "but it's still about baseball".
(Translated from Italian)