Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi controls a huge chunk of the Italian media - not through brute political force (at least not entirely), but because he actually owns a ton of newspapers and television networks (not to mention the AC Milan soccer team). Not surprisingly, the Italian public is starting to sour on the state of things, and the film community is no exception.

First came Viva Zapatero!, a documentary that received a 15 minute standing ovation at the Venice Film Festival and was more recently a surprise hit in theaters. Described as "Italy's Fahrenheit 9/11," the film examines "the perceived deterioration of the Italian media over the past 10 years [and] the alleged censorship of Italian journalists under the Berlusconi administration" through a look at the repression of a single satirical show that was shut down after pressure from the Prime Minister.

Then, due this spring - just before Italy's general election - is a project called Il Caimano (the name of which is a play on Berlusconi's nickname among the left-wing press). Though the order of secrecy that has been placed on the film's post-production is holding to a disappointing degree, word on the film is that it's "a fictionalized no-holds-barred take on" the Prime Minister. In addition there are two - fictional, of course - projects currently in the works about Berlusconi's assassination. Wow.

Seriously people - I mean, all hell breaks out here when Michael Moore beats his chest a little bit. Imagine the reaction of the other side if movies were being made about the killing of a president, no matter his party. Holy crap.
categories Movies, Cinematical