May 7, 2009

Diary from the set, part IV

Here are 2 more photos I forgot to upload after my return from the recent location shoot.

These were taken at the Medieval Abbey of Casamari, where many scenes from the film were shot over the last 4 days.

The story we are telling is the interesting life of an Italian poet living in France in the tumultuous times immediately following the demise of King Charles V. The poet's name was Cristina da Pizzano, or Christine de Pizan (1363–c.1434) she - to quote Wikipedia - "was a woman of the medieval era who strongly challenged misogyny and stereotypes that were prevalent in the male-dominated realm of the arts. Cristina became well-known and highly regarded in her own day, she was born in Venice but spent most of her childhood and all of her adult life primarily in Paris and then the abbey at Poissy, and wrote entirely in her adoptive tongue of Middle French. Her early courtly poetry is marked by her knowledge of aristocratic custom and fashion of the day, particularly involving women and the practice of chivalry; her early and later allegorical and didactic treatises reflect both autobiographical information about her life and views and also her own individualized and protofeminist approach to the scholastic learned tradition of mythology, legend, and history she inherited from clerical scholars and to the genres and courtly or scholastic subjects of contemporary French and Italian poets she admired.Supported and encouraged by important royal French and English patrons, Christine had a profound influence on fifteenth-century English poetry. Pizan completed forty-one pieces during her thirty-year career (1399–1429). She earned her accolade as Europe’s first professional woman writer."

She wrote in defense of the poor, of women and the destitute victims of political oppression and struck a mighty pen at the tyrants of the time. In our romanticized version of history, we have Cristina maintain an epistolary and platonic affair with an ordained prelate to whom she remains a loyal friend until the end, and with whom she co-wrote many interesting essays , one of which on the figure of Joan of Arc.

On Friday we wrap our third week of photography and the next three will be on a sound stage in Cinecittà, Rome's leading film studios. I will post photos of the constructions built especially for the film and capture more images of my days "behind the scenes," sharing my thoughts and my days with you.



  1. How fun, and interesting! Your pics are gorgeous... I am envious!

  2. So glad I'm able to read/see this. I couldn't get into your last post...kept getting an error message. Poo.

    Interesting film subject. I'm looking forward to seeing the sound stage photos.

    And you get to stay home with precious E.

  3. Looking forward to that very much. I loved the Abbey photo before. :D

  4. It's the first time I hear about this woman. It must have been so difficult for a woman at that times to be respected and accomplished as an artist.
    I am happy somebody thought of making a film out of her life! Will the film be distributed in Italy?

  5. Thanks Lola, This is very interesting to me to pick up bits and pieces of the story line, and how this film is produced in varies locations. As you know, I have been currently acting in a film. This women Christine de Pizan must have been an incredibly strong person in her times. But yet a valuable one! Grazie :)

  6. love the medieval theme to the pics and sounds like a great story to tell. intrigued.

  7. This is going to be a very interesting film and I hope it'll be distributed worldwide.

    I so well remember seeing the first b&w Joan of Arc movie when I was about 4 and it so impressed me, even at that tender age!

  8. Good information here. I will have to search and try to find some of her poetry. I never heard of her!

    So, you're back in Rome, still working long days. How long will this project go?

  9. LaDue - Thank you! There's more comin'

    Patrizia - Oh poo, what happened? Click on my blog header and scroll down to the unread post, maybe that'll work. Ciao

    Natalie - Cheers, love! Sending you light and kisses

    Valeria - I'm afraid it will ONLY be released in Italy! Directed by Stefania Sandrelli, starring her daughter. Small budget, low profile, independent production...

    Chuck - I'm glad you enjoyed. Grazie

    Brian - Will post more on Christine in the future as we go along in the telling her cinematic story.

    Jane - I hope so too, but being an Italian indie, I fear the international market may not consider it. Keep fingers crossed...

    Rosaria - Click on her name in my post, it will open a Wikipedia page on her with loads of info. The film wraps in July. Days are long but I sleep in E's arms at night!

  10. Gorgeous images. It's like going back into history with you. I can't imagine. I'm overwhelmed to think of what comprises a day for you.

  11. So beautiful Lola.

    How is your sweet boy; are you getting home to give him goodnight kisses.

    Love Renee xoxo

  12. Erin - Today, for example, was a crappy day. But on the good ones, I feel invincible!

    Renee - On the mornings I manage to see my boy awake, he grabs me and cries when I walk out the door, heavy rock in my chest. When I return home, he's already asleep 3 nights out of 5. When I find him awake still, he smothers me with kisses and tenderness.

    Is work making me miss out on precious moments with him?

  13. I'm looking forward to more of these. So fascinating, with all the history, photos, personal accounts you're giving us. We don't have this stuff in Montana, ma cher.