Federico Fellini

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Federico Fellini
BirthplaceRimini, Kingdom of Italy
Film director and scriptwriter

Fellini, Federico

(fādārē`kō fāl-lē`nē), 1920–93, Italian film director. After World War II he wrote screenplays for such neorealistic films as RosselliniRossellini, Roberto
, 1906–77, Italian film director and producer. He first received international attention in 1946 with Open City, which was made clandestinely during the Fascist period and became the key film of the neorealist movement.
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's Open City and Paisan. He began directing in 1950 and quickly abandoned neorealism in favor of professional actors and scripted tales of almost fablelike simplicity that express a basically humanistic outlook.

He enjoyed international acclaim with I Vitelloni (1953), La Strada (1954; Academy Award), Nights of Cabiria (1957; Academy Award), La Dolce Vita (1960), and 8 1-2 (1963; Academy Award), the latter two widely considered his black-and-white masterpieces. Filmed in color beginning with Juliet of the Spirits (1965), his movies became a celebration of life in all its beauties and grotesqueries while also exploring Fellini's wildly imaginative dream life. These later works, including Fellini Satyricon (1969), Amarcord (1973; Academy Award), City of Women (1980), Ginger and Fred (1984), and Voices of the Moon (1990), feature international casts of distinctive faces and camera gymnastics that substitute for traditional drama.


See his tape-recorded autobiography (with C. Chandler) I, Fellini (1995); his Three Screenplays (tr. 1970); his The Book of Dreams (tr. 2008); biography by H. Alpert (1986, repr. 1998); study by G. Salachas (tr. 1969); Fellini: I'm a Born Liar (documentary film dir. by D. Pettigrew, 2002).

Fellini, Federico


Born Jan. 20, 1920, in Rimini. Italian motion-picture director and screenwriter.

Fellini has been working in motion pictures since 1942. At first he wrote stories and screenplays. Subsequently he assisted in the production of the neorealist film Open City (1945) and other films. His first work as a director came with the films The White Sheik (1952) and IVitelloni (1953), for which he wrote the stories and collaborated on the screenplays. La Strada (1954) brought worldwide recognition to Fellini and G. Masina, who starred in the film. La Strada, a film with a moral, vividly communicates a central theme in Fellini’s work—the alienation of people in a bourgeois society.

The Nights of Cabiria (1956) and subsequent films are emotionally powerful works that reflect the contrasts of contemporary Western society and explore human psychology in a profound and subtle way. At the same time, irrational, religious strains and a tendency toward universal forgiveness occasionally come through in several of Fellini’s films. Sometimes his films are formally complex and stylized and are dominated by an abstract approach to reality.

Fellini’s most socially perceptive film is La Dolce Vita (1959). His other films include 8Vi (1962), which received the grand prize at the Third International Moscow Film Festival; Juliet of the Spirits (1965); Satyricon (1969), based on the novel by Petronius; The Clowns (1970), a television film; and Roma (1972).

In 1974, Fellini made the film Amarcord, based on a novella he wrote with T. Guerra; the autobiographical elements characteristic of Fellini’s work are especially pronounced in this work. With Amarcord, Fellini’s work assumed a clear-cut political stance, using satire to mercilessly expose the cruelty and demagogic propaganda of Italian Fascism.

Fellini’s motion pictures have won prizes at many international festivals.


“Amarkord.” Iskusstvo kino, 1976, nos. 3–4. (With T. Guerra.)


Federico Fellini: Stat’i, Interv’iu, Retsenzii, Vospominaniia. Moscow, 1968. (Translated from Italian.)


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