Giuseppe Tornatore

BIRTHDAY6 September 1925
BIRTHPLACEPorto Empedocle

Giuseppe Tornatore is a Sicilian director, screenwriter, film producer and editor. He was born Bagheria, in the province of Palermo, the 27 May of 1956.

At only 16 years old, he staged texts by Luigi Pirandello and Eduardo De Filippo and then approached the world of cinema.

He shoots documentaries and works for television. In 1984 he directed the second unit of Giuseppe Ferrara's Cento Giorni a Palermo. Two years later he signed his directorial debut with Il Camorrista: a hard-hitting portrait of a Neapolitan underworld boss.

Success and great recognition came for him in 1998. Nuovo Cinema Paradiso received the Special Grand Jury Prize in Cannes and, in Hollywood, was awarded the Oscar for best foreign film. The film became a cult film. Filmed in some inland Sicilian locations, such as Palazzo Adriano, it is a bittersweet amarcord set in 1950s Sicily. It represents a moving tribute to the cinema of the time that was.

After achieving success and worldwide notoriety, Giuseppe Tornatore shot Stanno Tutti Bene, the story of a retiree who travels up Italy to visit his children. The next film was Una Pura Formalità, in 1993, a psychological thriller.

With L'Uomo delle Stelle, in 1995, he returns to the Sicily of the past. The film is set in the immediate postwar period and the main character is a hustler, who organizes fake movie auditions for money to take money away from poor villagers.

In 1998 the Sicilian director turned his attention to kolossal filmmaking, directing The Legend of the Pianist on the Ocean.

In 2000 he returned to the amarcord of Sicily, with Malèna, starring Monica Bellucci.

After a long hiatus, Giuseppe Tornatore returned to theaters in 2006, with the highly successful thriller La Sconosciuta.

After three years, he opened the 2009 Venice Film Festival with the film Baarìa, dedicated to his hometown. The appreciation is unanimous: it had been 20 years since an Italian film received such honor at the Lido.

In 2010, Tornatore received an honorary degree in television, cinema and new media from Milan's IULM University.

A director of over twelve films and ten documentaries, the various awards he has won include a Golden Globe, a Special Jury Grand Prix, two BAFTA awards, eleven David di Donatello awards, and an Academy Award.

Blog at