Archive of films Il Divo / Il divo

2008, 118 min

Section: Open Eyes
Year: 2008

A brilliant portrait of a man who stepped onto the Italian political stage in 1946 and hasn’t altogether left it since. The subject of the filmmaker’s antipathy and fascination is the nearly ninety-year-old Christian Democrat Giulio Andreotti, who stood at the head of the Italian government seven times and never found himself in the crosshairs of the mafia (as opposed to many of his colleagues and companions). Superbly portrayed by Tony Servillo, the “divine Giulio” is an enigmatic figure, even physically reminiscent of a puppet willing to sacrifice his conscience for the sake of his infinite ambition.


“Il divo” means “the divine”, which is how Italians ironically refer to the man who stepped up onto their political stage in 1946 and hasn’t altogether left it since. Going on for 90, Giulio Andreotti, Christian Democrat and devout Catholic, who has headed the Italian government seven times and is a senator for life, is an enigmatic figure closely bound to the history of post-war Italy. This brilliant portrait of Andreotti won director Paolo Sorrentino the Jury Prize in Cannes this year. The subject of the filmmaker’s antipathy and fascination is a politician who navigated life without ever coming into conflict with the mafia (while they eliminated many of his colleagues and fellow party members), and who even managed to fend off charges of corruption. Superbly portrayed by Tony Servillo, the “divine Giulio” is a mysterious figure, even physically resembling a puppet who voluntarily defers all that is human, including his conscience, in the interests of his boundless ambition. “This is a malicious film, I am not that cynical,” was Giulio Andreotti’s reaction when he saw the biopic. Nonetheless, in keeping with the self-composed opportunism that has always aided his steep rise to political fame, he added that he does not intend to sue the filmmaker.

About the director

Paolo Sorrentino (b. 1970, Naples, Italy) worked as a scriptwriter with Neapolitan stage and film directors and in 1998 made the short film Love Has No Confines (L’amore non ha confini), for which he won awards at home and abroad. He was also involved as a writer in the TV series La squadra (2002) before making his first feature film One Man Up (L’uomo in più), screened in the competition at Venice in 2001 and a year later at Karlovy Vary. The film won a series of awards, as did Sorrentino’s next film, The Consequences of Love (Le conseguenze dell’ amore, 2004), which was selected for the competition at Cannes, as was his latest film, Family Friend (2005 – Horizons KVIFF 2006). He competed in Cannes for the third time with his film Il Divo, a portrait of politician Giulio Andreotti.


Beta Cinema GmbH
Grünwalder Weg 28d, 820 41, Oberhaching/Munich
Tel: +49 896 734 698 828
Fax: +49 896 734 698 88
E-mail: [email protected]

Istituto Luce Cinecittà
Via Tuscolana 1055, 00173, Rome
Tel: +39 067 228 61
Fax: +39 067 222 493

About the film

Color, 35 mm

Section: Open Eyes
Director: Paolo Sorrentino
Screenplay: Paolo Sorrentino
Dir. of Photography: Luca Bigazzi
Music: Teho Teardo
Editor: Cristiano Travaglioli
Producer: Nicola Giuliano, Francesca Cima, Andrea Occhipinti, Maurizio Coppolecchia
Production: Indigo Film, LUCKY RED, Parco Film
Cast: Toni Servillo, Anna Bonaiuto, Giulio Bosetti, Flavio Bucci, Carlo Buccirosso, Giorgio Colangeli, Alberto Cracco, Paolo Graziosi
Contact: Beta Cinema GmbH, Istituto Luce Cinecittà


Serena Mazzi

Film Institution Rep.

Silvana Tucci

Film Institution Rep.

Nicola Giuliano



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