Squitieri, Pasquale

   Screenwriter and director. After graduating in law in his native Naples, Squitieri moved to Rome, where he began acting in the theater. Attracted by the lure of cinema, he was soon working as assistant director to Francesco Rosi. He made his directorial debut with Io e Dio (God and I, 1969), a film about a priest in southern Italy, encouraged and produced for him by Vittorio De Sica. There followed two forays into the Western all'italiana under the pseudonym William Redford, Django sfida Sartana (Django Defies Sartana, 1970) and La vendetta e unpiatto che si serve freddo (Vengeance Is a Dish Served Cold, 1971), before Camorra (Gang War in Naples, 1972), the first of a number of films exploring the issue of organized crime in southern Italy, which included what many still regard as Squitieri's best film, Ilprefetto di ferro (The Iron Prefect, 1977). A heroic portrait of Cesare Mori, the police prefect from northern Italy who was sent to Sicily in 1925 in order to subdue the Mafia, Il prefetto was awarded the David di Donatello for Best Film and its film score by Ennio Morricone was nominated for an Academy Award. Following another film on the Mafia, Corleone (Father of the Godfathers, 1978), Squitieri changed direction to make Claretta (Claretta Petacci, 1984), a film about Mussolini's mistress, Clara Petacci, which starred the actress with whom he most often worked and had married, Claudia Cardinale. The film was critically acclaimed, earning Cardinale a Nastro d'argento for her powerful interpretation of the role, but Squitieri was also fiercely attacked for what appeared to many to be an indulgence in Fascist sympathies.
   Squitieri subsequently worked for a period in television before returning to the big screen with several strongly socially committed films, Gli invisibili (The Invisible Ones, 1988), which tackled the theme of political terrorism, and Atto di dolore (Act of Sorrow, 1990), the moving story of a mother struggling to save her son from a heroin addiction. He also returned to the theme of criminality in southern Italy, and to the style of his earlier spaghetti Westerns, in Li chiamarono briganti (Brigands, 1999). His most recent film, L'avvocato de Gregorio (Counselor de Gregorio, 2003), is about an elderly lawyer in straitened circumstances who manages to reassert his sense of dignity by taking a stance for justice.
   Historical Dictionary of Italian Cinema by Alberto Mira

Guide to cinema. . 2011.

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  • Squitieri, Pasquale — (1938 )    Screenwriter and director. After graduating in law in his native Naples, Squitieri moved to Rome, where he began acting in the theater. Attracted by the lure of cinema, he was soon working as assistant director to Francesco Rosi. He… …   Historical dictionary of Italian cinema

  • Pasquale Squitieri — (* 27. November 1938 in Neapel, Italien) ist ein italienischer Filmregisseur. Leben Squitieri wandte sich nach einer Assistenzzeit bei Francesco Rosi und journalistischen Tätigkeiten für die italienische Zeitung Paese Sera dem Filmgeschäft zu.… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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