Legendary Italian film studio hosts Covid-19 vaccination center

Rome, Apr 20 (EFE).- Rome’s storied Cinecitta studio began a new phase in its existence on Tuesday as a Covid-19 vaccination site amid preparations to restart the Italian film industry after more than a year of disruptions due to the pandemic.

The return to normal life in the Eternal City should encompass Rome’s historic places, Niccola Zingaretti, president of the surrounding region of Lazio, said in explaining the decision to include Cinecitta in the vaccination effort.

The site will be open from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm, seven days a week.

While the nurses working at the site told Efe they expect to administer around 1,000 a day to start, Zingaretti said plans call for that figure to be increased to 2,200 per day as more vaccine becomes available.

The vaccination takes place in Teatro 20, whose walls are covered with displays including images and phrases from the history of Italian cinema and photos of celebrities from the world of film and beyond, such as Sophia Loren, Luciano Pavarotti and soccer great Francesco Totti.

Cinecitta’s importance lies not just in its “glorious past,” but in what it means “for the present and future of Italian cinema,” Culture Minister Dario Franceschini said during Tuesday’s ceremony.

“That’s why it is important that the center is here,” he said.

Zingaretti thanked the health care workers who have made it possible to reach the goal of administering 30,000 daily doses of vaccine in Lazio, a region of 5.8 million inhabitants, and said that the number would increase thanks to an expected near-doubling of the vaccine supply.

It was “very beautiful experience,” to be vaccinated in such a special place, 63-year-old Patrizia, one of the first people to get the shot at Cinecitta, told Efe.

Federico Fellini, Roberto Rossellini, Luchino Visconti, Sergio Leone, Bernardo Bertolucci, Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, and Mel Gibson are among the filmmakers to have worked at Cinecitta, where more than 3,000 movies have been made. EFE tcm/ta/dr

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