E lucean le stelle
Buskin Film, Box Film (London), Creative Partners International (London)
35mm - colour
festivals & awards:
1939: Europe stands on the brink of the Second World War. Mussolini’s Italian government has already signed ‘The Pact of Steel’ with Hitler. Rome is at the heart of the great political standoff between Western democracy and Italian Fascism.
Despite this political and social tension, it seems to be business as usual in the wonderful world of Italian cinema. Producer Davide Reiti, an elegant Jewish man in his forties, decides to make one of his epic films at Cinecittà Studios - ‘Tosca’ starring the German superstar Kristina Baumgarten and the English actor James Clavel. They are joined by a beautiful and gifted group of international actors and actresses with the great Hungarian Lazlo Molnar directing. The studio is buzzing. Everyone is excited...
In this fervent atmosphere the crew start shooting. Off the set, Kristina who hails from Berlin, ‘the city of decadence,’ turns towards her pragmatic and disillusioned English co-star James to escape the grim reality of 1939 Europe. James meanwhile finds psychological protection in alcohol and morphine. But with the war knocking at the door, Reiti starts to come under pressure from all sides - the government, the banks and then the media when his relationship with a handsome young actor is exposed.
Surrounded by sexual and political scandal, the secret police and setbacks at every turn ‘Tosca’ seems doomed. But determined to rise above the deadly political threat, Reiti and his crew decide to make one final extraordinary effort to complete the film over one night. Together the actors and technicians rally, agreeing to risk their lives to finish the film.