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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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Italian Film Festival Continues for Seventh Year

Photo Credit: Stony Brook University

You don’t have to travel to Italy to experience Italian cinema.

It was luci, foto, azione – lights, camera, action in Italian at the Wang Center Theater Saturday, Nov. 6 and Sunday, Nov. 7. The 7th annual Italian Film Festival at Stony Brook brought Italian cinema to campus free of charge.

Dr. Gioacchino Balducci, teacher of two Italian film classes at Stony Brook and the director of the festival, proposed the idea for it seven years ago. He said the reason he wanted to do this was because he believes not enough foreign films are shown in surrounding theaters or on campus.

The decrease in the distribution of foreign films was another reason he wanted to start the festival.

He said, “it’s a good avenue for students and the community to have a chance to see the films.”

The festival, put on by the Center for Italian Studies, featured six recently released 2010 Italian films shown with English subtitles, none of which have been premiered in the United States yet. In previous years, the Suffolk County Department of Economic Development helped provide funds for the festival, but this year it provided no support. This year, the festival was fully put on  by the efforts of the Center For Italian Studies and Department of European Languages.

The faculty was granted special permission to use the Wang Center Theater free of charge. The films varied from comedies like Mine Vacanto (Loose Cannons) to dramas like L’uomo Che Verra (The Man Who Will Come). Balducci was able to get the films from distributor contacts in Italy.

According to Balducci, “Rehearsal For A Sicilian Tragedy,” one film shown on Sunday, is likely to be distributed in the United States. The film was shown for the first time in the United States at the film festival.

“I had to convince him to send me a copy,” said Balducci. But it paid off. The director of the film sent Balducci his personal copy of the DVD.

The festival was advertised to both Stony Brook students and to the community and was even advertised in the local paper, drawing in a good-sized audience that was free to come and go between films.

Josephine Fusco, the executive director of the center for Italian Studies said they want to reach out to the public as much as they could.

“The films provide an educational opportunity to address cultural interests and support showing Italian culture,” said Fusco.

Both Balducci and Fusco encouraged student attendance, and Italian Studies students were offered extra credit for attending. According to Balducci, this year’s audience had more students than last. Set to continue next year, the annual festival will continue to educate students about Italian culture and provide them and the community with foreign movies.

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