The Italian Almanac

Krzysztof Zanussi

Italian News - May 10

Distinguished Polish director Krzysztof Zanussi is looking to his Italian roots for his latest film, Il Sole Nero (The Black Sun). The movie, which he has started shooting in Umbria, is set in Sicily, has an Italian cast, and is based on an Italian play. Zanussi, considered one of European cinema's big guns, was born in Warsaw in 1939, but his family is of Italian descent. Il Sole Nero is an adaptation of a work of the same title by Italian playwright Rocco Familiari.

The movie stars Valeria Golino, who is best known for her part as Tom Cruise's girlfriend in Rain Man, but more respected for her work in European pictures, such as the 2002 Italian hit Respiro (Grazia's Island). Golino plays Agata, a young woman who finds love but then sees her dreams destroyed and is forced to choose between forgiveness and revenge.

Zanussi, a physics graduate, is a prolific director and screenwriter who makes documentaries and features for both the silver screen and television. He is a staunch Catholic and was close to the last pope, John Paul II.