Tour Rome’s Cincecitta film studios

Tour Rome’s Cincecitta film studios

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Cinecittà On Display is a brilliant new exhibition at Rome’s film studios.

Visit the set of HBO’s Rome, Gangs of New York and discover the genius of the Italian screen legends and some of the most celebrated films.

This exhibition narrates the story of the Studios through the most important productions that took place in the Dream Factory.

It’s a journey through a number of diverse film genres which have contributed to the history of cinema: from the big American productions of Hollywood on the Tiber to Italian comedies, from Neo-realistic movies to Spaghetti Westerns.

The exhibition pays tribute to the most famous performers and films, through an accurate selection of photographs, videos and a rich collection of costumes. As well as a large section dedicated to the International stars the so-called Hollywood on the Tiber, with Audrey Hepburn, Jayne Mansfield, Ava Gardner and Italian Loren, Lollobrigida, Mangano and other celebrities who generated the very first fan bases.
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The costumes shown evoke unforgettable actors and films: Alida Valli and Farley Granger in Senso, 1954, by Luchino Visconti; Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton in The Tame of the Shrew, 1967, by Franco Zeffirelli; the costume of character Don Saverio Petrillo, “O pazzariello”, interpreted by Totò in L’oro di Napoli, 1954, by Vittorio De Sica, or the outfit worn by Clint Eastwood in A Fistful of Dollars, 1964, by Sergio Leone. The Spaghetti Western genre, the Italian comedy, the Seventies and the Eighties are narrated over three areas, each showing its own themed set. The route ends with a room entirely dedicated to a great master of cinema, Sergio Leone, with a scenic design inspired to Once Upon a Time in America, and the screening of scenes from his masterpieces: The Colossus of Rhodes, 1961; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, 1966; Once Upon a Time in the West, 1968; Duck, You Sucker!, 1971; Once Upon a Time in America, 1984.
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Three different aspects are examined: the historical, political and cultural reasons for the birth of the “City of Cinema,” its big productions, and its tragic epilogue. From the silent films to the talkies, from the fire at Cines to the planning of an ultra-modern city of cinema, the foundation and inauguration of an in-depth architectonic project brought about many years of national productions in Italy. A narration takes us through the period, between 1936 and 1945, revealing the reasons for the birth of Cinecittà and the goals behind the re-launching of a national cinema. Footage and excerpts connect the development of Cinecittà to historical events and to the socio-political context of those years.

An entire hall is dedicated to the Maestro, who chose Cinecittà as the place where is vivid imagination would take shape. The question, “why Cinecittà?” is answered with reels of Federico Fellini’s unreleased footage, drawings and images presented within an evocative atmosphere created precisely for this purpose. The Maestro’s images are given room among the mystical columns of the “Square Colosseum”, the EUR building beloved by Fellini and replicated in the set design of the hall. Symbolic objects from some of the best-known films inhabit the room’s corners and recesses. The costumes, selected by Nicoletta Ercole, include those worn by Giulietta Masina and Marcello Mastroianni in Ginger e Fred and Giulietta degli Spiriti, Anita Ekberg in La Dolce Vita, the cast of I Clowns, and the child playing the flute in the final scene of 8 1/2. A fitting tribute to Fellini on the 20th anniversary of his demise.


Seventy-six years of Cinecittà have brought loads of movies: about four thousand. We have had access to an impressive amount of files, and have delved into this colossus of films and talents with an adventurous spirit.
Today the name of Cinecittà still stirs special interest: it’s a symbol, a sort of talisman arousing the public’s curiosity as they are always keen to know how this legend originated and how we can revisit it.
Cinecittà represents a big part of the Italian cinema, from 1937 to 1943-44, when production was interrupted by the Second World War, paving the way to the great Neo-realist directors.

The studios, located on Via Tuscolana, were born out of the ambition to compete with Hollywood, and after the war Hollywood came to Rome and it was nicknamed Hollywood on the Tiber.

This was the happiest time for Cinecittà, when prestigious productions by well-known Italian and US directors took place, and many beloved movies were shot with popular comedians, stars and unforgettable divas.
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We were surprised to discover the never-ending possibilities offered by Cinecittà, a place that is now looking for its future, after such a glorious past.

Want to experience Rome, but don’t have a time machine? Walk around the Rome HBO set.

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METRO Cinecitta


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