The Sets/A MODERN STORY, WITH GENOA IN THE LEADING ROLE
At the end of the 90s, the Genova Set Film Commission, the forerunner of the Genova- Liguria FC, managed to bring an important TV drama to Genoa (“Vento di Ponente”): this heralded a return to locations in Genoa and Liguria of theatrical and TV production companies, after a long period of near obscurity following the splendor of 70s detective dramas.
The return of cinema to Genoa has been crowned by the success of 3 very different works, which have all put the city (and the region) at the center of the stories told.
“Giorni e Nuvole “” Days and Clouds” by Silvio Soldini places the two leading actors, Margherita Buy and Antonio Albanese, in a city that includes “postcard perfect” locations (the cliffs of Nervi, the Old City Center, the Old Port), as well as some more unusual and less frequented places, from the hills in the outskirts to the Cornigliano bridge and the Quarto Alto district.
For versatile British director Michael Winterbottom, “Genova” (which is also the title of his film), is a city of shadows and mystery, counterbalanced by the sunny, sweaty Riviera where the handsome Colin Firth tries to find the courage to start living again after a terrible trauma.
Pietro Marcello, the Italian cinema industry’s enfant prodige, portrays the end of the industrial city and twentieth century certainties as well as the advancement of new marginalities in La Bocca del Lupo (winner of the Turin Film Festival 2009).
Three important views of the city which have been met with critical and public acclaim.
But these are not the only audiovisual productions realized in Genoa and Liguria in recent years.
The region has been very successful in attracting and welcoming the production of commercials (nearly all the world’s biggest automobile brands have visited Liguria over the last 3-4 years).
It is a lively center for the production of music video clips (now going through a difficult period due to the crisis of the post-web record industry).
Direct interventions by the Liguria region and the Genova-Liguria Film Commission have made it possible to produce two “d’auteur” documentaries about industry and the territory “” the first, also directed by Silvio Soldini, is “Un piede in Terra e l’altro in Mare “” One foot on the land, the other in the sea”, the second was made this year by Daniele Vicari and Andrea De Sica (Vittorio’s *grandson): “Foschia, Pesci, Africa, Sonno Noia, Fantasia “” Mist, Fish, Africa, Sleepiness, Boredom, Imagination “.
Services/ONE PORT WAS NOT ENOUGH, SO THE CINEPORT WAS CREATED
“One port was no longer enough for Genoa”.
This headline, playing on the city’s ancient role as a port and its new creative-industrial activities, announced the opening of the Genoa Cineport last February.
After the Cineports of Turin, Lecce and Bari, now the regional capital of Liguria also has an infrastructure dedicated to audiovisual production companies which can find structures equipped to meet their every need.
The covered area of around 1400 square meters with a car park of around 2,000 square meters, includes a carpentry/ set workshop, a costumes/dressmaking workroom, a casting room with dressing rooms, a small 180 sq. meter film studio with a “green screen”, production offices and “” the only one of its kind in Italy “” guest accommodation that sleeps fifteen.
A canteen/restaurant and bar will be opening soon which can also be used by the public.
The aim of offering a small but flexible and versatile structure to meet the demands of local as well as “incoming” productions seems to have been achieved: in the four months since it opened (albeit without offering a complete service), 18 productions have been made, including 5 video clips, 2 feature films, 3 commercials, 2 photo shoots and 1 program for a national TV network.
The extremely favorable economic conditions applied to productions have greatly contributed to this success.
“It costs very little to use the Genoa Cineport”, says Matteo Massari of the Genova-Liguria Film Commission, the structure’s manager, “it is only necessary to cover basic expenses such as electricity and cleaning”.
The Genoa Cineport follows the renovation “” carried out by Società per Cornigliano “” of the small building which, until four years ago, hosted the management offices of Ilva, right opposite the area which was the location of one of the largest blast furnaces in Europe.
It is also next to Villa Bombrini.
Incubators/A CENTRE FOR THE TERRITORY AUDIOVISUAL’S COMPANIES
Villa Bombrini is an 18th century villa which has strangely survived in this industrial area: within the space of just a few months, a number of small industries and professionals from the audiovisual sector have settled in this smaller version of Versailles around the offices of the Genova-Liguria Film Commission.
There are around twenty companies and professionals in the new Polo Produzioni Audiovisive di Cornigliano “” Cornigliano Audiovisual Productions Center (PPAC).
The project, created and supported by the Film Commission, involves the provision, at modest prices, of fully equipped officemodules, with parking, caretaker service, high speed internet connection, electricity and meeting rooms.
The PPAC companies can also use the structures in the Genoa Cineport at special rates.
The Film Commission provides advice on funding, company management, marketing and the diffusion of audiovisual products.
The companies involved include production services such as Riviera Films, small but dynamic production companies like Video Voyagers and Jolly Roger Film Making and companies that hire production materials like Genova Film Service.
There are also photographers, Web streaming service managers, multimedia journalists, casting companies, filmmakers and associated professionals in the make-up and wigs sector.