De Sica, Vittorio
- died Nov. 13, 1974, Paris, FranceItalian film director and actor.He joined an acting company in 1923 and soon became a matinee idol. He appeared on screen as a leading man in a series of light comedies, and he excelled in a dramatic role in Roberto Rossellini's General della Rovere (1959). He directed his first film in 1940 and, working with screenwriter Cesare Zavattini, made a major contribution to the Neorealism of the postwar Italian cinema with Shoeshine (1946, Academy Award) and The Bicycle Thief (1948, Academy Award). His later films include Umberto D. (1952), Two Women (1961), Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow (1963, Academy Award), and The Garden of the Finzi-Continis (1971, Academy Award).
* * *▪ Italian directorborn July 7, 1902, Sora, Italydied November 13, 1974, Paris, Francefilm director and actor who was a major figure in the Italian Neorealist movement.During a prolific career that spanned 55 years, De Sica directed 35 films and acted in more than 150. His career as an actor began in 1918 with a small part in a silent film. Throughout the 1920s he performed in films and musical theatre and with touring theatre companies before attaining stardom in Italy with his role in Mario Camerini's Gli uomini, che mascalzoni! (1932; “What Rascals Men Are!”). De Sica's subsequent roles throughout the 1930s established him as a romantic leading man who was especially deft at light comedy; many critics have compared his screen persona to that of Cary Grant (Grant, Cary).Although he maintained a successful acting career until the end of his life, De Sica's directorial efforts—usually in collaboration with screenwriter Cesare Zavattini (Zavattini, Cesare)—are regarded as his more influential contribution to cinema history. The roots of Neorealism—an emphasis upon simple, honest story lines, a documentary style, the frequent use of children as protagonists, on-location shooting, social themes, and faith in the brotherhood of man—are found in De Sica's early works, particularly Teresa Venerdì (1941; Doctor Beware) and I Bambini ci guardano (1942; The Children Are Watching Us). It was during the postwar peak of Neorealism, however, that De Sica became one of the world's most acclaimed directors with four masterpieces of the genre: Sciuscià (1946; Shoeshine), an account of the tragic lives of two children during the American occupation of Italy; Ladri di biciclette (1948; The Bicycle Thief), an Oscar winner for best foreign film; Miracolo a Milano (1951; Miracle in Milan), a comic parable about the clash of rich and poor in Milan; and Umberto D. (1952), a tragedy about a lonely pensioner, his dog, and a young maid who takes pity upon them both. The performances of the largely amateur casts in these films received widespread acclaim. As he was a skilled actor himself, De Sica worked well with nonprofessionals, especially small children, from whom he was able to elicit masterful performances.Though critical favourites, the films of the Italian Neorealist movement never attained popular acceptance. De Sica's foray into more commercial fare was largely motivated by a reliance on his acting income and on loans from friends to finance his films. His rapprochement with Hollywood began with Stazioni Termini (1953; Indiscretion of an American Wife), a David O. Selznick (Selznick, David O.) production that starred Montgomery Clift (Clift, Montgomery) and Jennifer Jones and boasted a screenplay coauthored by Zavattini, Ben Hecht (Hecht, Ben), and Truman Capote (Capote, Truman). Many of the other films De Sica directed during this period star Sophia Loren (Loren, Sophia), the Italian beauty who rose to fame largely on the strength of her performances in such De Sica films as L'oro di Napoli (1954; The Gold of Naples), La ciociara (1961; Two Women), Ieri, oggi, domani (1963; Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow), and Matrimonio all'italiana (1964; Marriage, Italian Style). By this point in his career, De Sica had reached the pinnacle of his commercial success and was known as an “international” director capable of working in both Hollywood and Rome. In addition, he continued to be a successful actor and essayed many of his more noted performances during this period, including his Oscar-nominated performance in A Farewell to Arms (1957) and his memorable portrayal of a petty thief-turned-spy in Roberto Rossellini (Rossellini, Roberto)'s Il Generale Della Rovere (1959; General Della Rovere).De Sica's later works combine the style of his Neorealist classics with techniques he learned during his Hollywood years. Il giardino dei Finzi-Contini (1970; The Garden of the Finzi-Continis), winner of an Oscar for best foreign film, was an extremely successful adaptation of Giorgio Bassani's classic novel about the destruction of the Jews in the city of Ferrara during the Holocaust. Una breve vacanza (1973; A Brief Vacation), the simple tale of a hospital volunteer worker, was in the style of De Sica's Neorealist films. De Sica's last film, Il viaggio (1974; The Voyage), was an adaptation of a short story by Luigi Pirandello that paired Richard Burton (Burton, Richard) with De Sica's favourite actress, Sophia Loren.Additional ReadingJohn Darretta, Vittorio De Sica: A Guide to References and Resources (1983).
* * *
Look at other dictionaries:
Sica, Vittorio de — ► (1902 74) Director y actor cinematográfico italiano. Películas: Matrimonio a la italiana (1964) y Los girasoles (1969), entre otras … Enciclopedia Universal
De Sica, Vittorio — (1902 1974) Stage and screen actor, director, and screenwriter. One of Italy s most prolific but also best loved actor directors, De Sica was born in Sora, a small town south of Rome, but spent his earliest years in Naples, hence his lifelong… … Guide to cinema
De Sica, Vittorio — (1902 1974) Stage and screen actor, director, and screenwriter. One of Italy s most prolific but also best loved actor directors, De Sica was born in Sora, a small town south of Rome, but spent his earliest years in Naples, hence his lifelong… … Historical dictionary of Italian cinema
De Sica, Vittorio — (1902–1974) Amatinee idol in the 1930s, Vittorio De Sica transformed himself into one of the greatest film directors in cinema history. Anative of the Ciociara, the region lying between Rome and Naples, De Sica began his film career early and… … Historical Dictionary of modern Italy
De Sica, Vittorio — • ДЕ СИ КА (De Sica) Витторио (7.7.1901 13.11.1974) итал. актёр, режиссёр. Род. в семье мелкого служащего. Учился в Высш. коммерч. ин те. С 1924 выступал на сцене в комедиях и водевилях. В кино с 1918, но активно снимался с 1931 (ф. Старая… … Кино: Энциклопедический словарь
De Sica,Vittorio — De Si·ca (də sēʹkə), Vittorio. 1901 1974. Italian filmmaker whose Bicycle Thief (1948) and Umberto D (1952) are considered classics of postwar realism. * * * … Universalium
De Sica, Vittorio — ► (1902 74) Actor y director cinematográfico italiano. Uno de los máximos exponentes del neorrealismo italiano. Películas: Ladrón de bicicletas (1948), Milagro en Milán (1951), etc. * * * (7 jul. 1901, Sora, Italia–13 nov. 1974, París, Francia).… … Enciclopedia Universal
De Sica, Vittorio — (1902–1974) Italian film actor and director … Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors
Vittorio de Sica — Naissance 7 juillet 1901 Sora Italie Nationalité(s) … Wikipédia en Français
Vittorio De Sica — Nombre real Vittorio Domenico Stanislao Gaetano Sorano De Sica Nacimiento 7 de julio de 1901 Sora, Frosinone, Lacio, Italia … Wikipedia Español