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February 29, 2024

Award-winning filmmaker Paolo Taviani dies at 92

Award-winning filmmaker Paolo Taviani dies at 92

Italian filmmaker Paolo Taviani, whose gritty biopic “Padre Padrone” won the top Cannes Film Festival prize, has died aged 92, Rome mayor Roberto Gualtieri said Thursday.

For more than three decades Taviani and his brother Vittorio formed one of cinema’s greatest directorial duos.

“Paolo Taviani, a great maestro of Italian cinema, leaves us,” Gualtieri said on X, the former Twitter.

The brothers “directed unforgettable, profound, committed films which entered into the collective imagination and the history of cinema,” Gualtieri said.

Taviani died in a clinic in Rome after suffering from a short illness, according to media reports.

His wife and two children were at his bedside, according to ANSA news agency, which said Taviani’s funeral would be celebrated on Monday.

Paolo and Vittorio, who died in 2018, made politically engaged films together for more than half a century.

“Padre Padrone”, set in Sardinia, won the Palme d’Or prize at the Cannes festival in 1977.

Former Cannes president Gilles Jacob told AFP Paolo Taviani was “one half of an enchanting duo”.

“Heirs to (Roberto) Rossellini with his elder brother Vittorio, a kind of grace touched their films of inimitable moral rigour and poetry,” he said.

“Padre padrone” and 1982 fantasy war drama “The Night of the Shooting Stars” were miracles of strength and delicacy, he said.

Another of the brothers’ critically acclaimed films is 2012’s “Caesar Must Die”, for which they won the Golden Bear prize at the Berlin International Film Festival.

The brothers’ father was an anti-fascist lawyer and they had an early interest in social issues, which they translated onto the screen with works known for their mix of history, psychological analysis and lyricism.

Taviani was born in 1931 in San Miniato in Tuscany.

His death “leaves an unfillable void not only in the world of cinema, but in the hearts of all of us who shared his origins, but also his love for this land,” said Eugenio Giani, the governor of Tuscany.