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Mario Martone’s The Mayor of Rione Sanità is now in post-production


- Produced by Indigo Film, the Neapolitan director’s new title based on Eduardo De Filippo’s three-act comedy is set in a modern-day, Gomorrah-style Naples

Mario Martone’s The Mayor of Rione Sanità is now in post-production
Francesco Di Leva in The Mayor of Rione Sanità

The Mayor of Rione Sanità, Mario Martone’s new film and his own personal interpretation of the three-act comedy by the legend that is Eduardo De Filippo, has entered into post-production. A likely candidate for the 2019 Venice Film Festival, the film comes off the back of a theatre production helmed by the Neapolitan director last year. Martone’s theatrical adaption of Eduardo’s 1960s masterpiece was bold and highly contemporary, set in a modern-day version of Naples inspired by the system described by Roberto Saviano in his book Gomorrah.

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This particular version of Naples is home to lead character Antonio Barracano, the young, vigorous and tattooed Mayor of Rione Sanità who plays by his own rules; a paternal figure who oversees the licit and illicit activities unfolding within the city. "Social responsibility", Martone had commented with regard to the comedy, "is about opening up new paths. But, as Eduardo tells us, the decision we make over which paths to take is a matter of individual responsibility". The transparent tables and chairs, the leather sofas, the golden drapes, the rottweilers placed on either side of the stage, skilfully lit so as to underscore the role played by symbols of glitz and glamour, the leather jackets, the rap music, the Maria Nazionale songs, the mobile phones and, last but certainly not least, the handguns were all reminiscent of the Camorra ideography we so often see in contemporary TV fiction.

For the film, whose editing is in the hands of Jacopo Quadri, Martone has very cleverly retained several actors from among the stage production’s excellent cast: Francesco Di Leva is the charismatic mayor and Adriano Pantaleo plays his right-hand man Catiello. The two of them are then flanked by the wonderful Roberto De Francesco, while Massimiliano Gallo will likewise be gracing the film with his presence in the robes of the rich baker Arturo Santaniello. Martone might also retain the original music used in the theatre production which came courtesy of rapper Ralph P.

The Mayor of Rione Sanità is produced by Indigo Film, who threw their weight behind Martone’s previous movie Capri-Revolution [+see also:
film review
interview: Mario Martone
film profile
(a competitor at the Venice Film Festival 2018) and are now hard at work on the director’s next title, Qui rido io, which shines a light on Eduardo Scarpetta, the biggest Neapolitan theatre actor and playwright working between the end of the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth century. True Colours is handling international sales of the The Mayor…, which already featured on the agent’s film slate at Cannes’ film market in May, with pleasing results (read our news).

(Translated from Italian)

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