Arts & Entertainment

Museum dedicated to legendary filmmaker Federico Fellini inaugurated in Italy

By Mercedes Ortuño Lizaran

Rimini, Italy, Aug 19 (EFE).- A museum dedicated to Federico Fellini was finally inaugurated Thursday in Rimini, the birthplace and hometown of the legendary Italian director and screenwriter and a city that served as inspiration for some of his most acclaimed films, including “Amarcord” and “I Vitelloni.”

The newly opened institution features several interactive spaces that pay tribute to the life and work, the dreams and the reality of one of cinema’s most significant figures.

Thursday’s inauguration of the museum’s main building is proof that “if you dream it, you can do it,” Rimini Mayor Andrea Gnassi told a group of foreign correspondents, referring to a project he has pursued since arriving at city hall a decade ago.

Fellini (1920-1993) grew up in the historic downtown of that city on the Adriatic coast and played with his friends near Castel Sismondo, which once was the residence of Rimini’s most powerful family in the Middle Ages and served as a prison when the future filmmaker was a boy.

Abandoned for many years, that building has been given new life as the main site of the new museum and will house different immersive installations that allow people to become a “spettautore” (a play on the words spectator and auteur).

Visitors will venture behind the big screen and plunge themselves into a dream-like world that Fellini himself might have designed.

Strolls in the winter fog along Rimini’s beach with iconic Fellini characters, fanciful dialogues between Marcello Mastroianni’s Marcello Rubini of “La dolce vita” and his Guido Alselmi of “8 1/2” and Nino Rota’s film scores played at full volume in a room inspired by the Fellini film “Prova d’orchestra” are some of the experiences that await visitors to this new museum.

Providing an in-depth, imaginative and entertaining exploration of all things Fellini, the museum’s extensive audiovisual material provides enough content for a die-hard fan to justify a visit of up to six hours.

Not all of the material pertains to the Italian director’s best-known feature films, and in fact its collection of archived documentary footage shows Fellini was peerless in his ability to portray 20th-century Italian life.

Starting at the age of six, when he sat on his father’s lap and watched Guido Brignone’s 1925 film “Maciste all’inferno” at Rimini’s Cinema Fulgor, Fellini set his sights on an eventual career in cinema.

Later on, the young Federico, also a talented cartoonist and portrait painter, was allowed to watch motion pictures there free of charge in exchange for drawing caricatures of the actors for the theater owner’s promotional purposes.

A second section of the museum, to be located above Cinema Fulgor and opened to the public in October, will offer a more traditional experience for museum-goers.

The pandemic delayed the conclusion of the museum project, which was initially to have been inaugurated in 2020 as part of the festivities to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the renowned director’s birth.

Rome was undeniably both a muse and the adopted home of Fellini, whose “La dolce vita” is a love letter to the Eternal City.

But Fellini always returned to Rimini and its Grand Hotel, associated in popular culture with the elegant dancing and the sensual and glamorous character Gradisca of “Amarcord.”

“Rimini is a dimension of my memory,” the filmmaker would say, and thus he did not wish to portray it faithfully but rather through the filter of his recollections. EFE


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