Carolina Crescentini. An authentic Roman
from her passion for the film set to sleepless nights watching video clips
She’s leaving for Naples when we meet her. Her destination is Capri for the Prix Italia, where she’ll present the second season of I bastardi di Pizzofalcone, premiering on Rai 1 in October, picking back up in her role as Laura Piras alongside Alessandro Gassmann’s Giuseppe Lojacono. She’s filming a new movie with Fabrizio Costa in Turin, but she can’t tell us anything about it. She’s natural, ironic and professional, the same combination of qualities that she brought to the recent Venice Film Festival, where she was the only Italian judge for the “Luigi De Laurentiis” Award for a Debut Film.
Where did your passion for cinema come from?
I’ve always watched film after film and I love to write, so I decided to enrol in a Film History and Critique course. After various writing seminars, out of pure curiosity, I signed up for an acting class…I never would have done it! That’s where it all began.
What was your experience like with transitioning from film school to working in front of the camera?
In reality, I did my first film, H2Odio, while I was still in acting school. I didn’t have the time to realize what was happening to me. I was hit by a giant wave, which I later understood was doing something I love.
Which director have you worked most closely with?
Giuliano Montaldo. In addition to being a master and an excellent director, he’s a very special man.
And other actors? Who have you connected with and who would you like to work with?
I work well with Piefrancesco Favino, who I’ve made two movies with (The Entrepreneur in 2011 and A casa tutti bene, which came out last year, editor’s note), because just like me, he’s dedicated to his job and we understand each other very easily. I would also like to work with Elio Germano.
Which role were you most enthusiastic about?
The “non-role” par excellence: the actress Corinna Negri in Boris, (which earned her a Nastro d’Argento for Best Supporting Actress, editor’s note). The film was genius, the script incredibly funny, with an irony that definitely spoke to me.
And what role would you like to play?
I’m inspired by women who are determined and courageous but who are fragile and hide it. Perhaps this is because I personally oscillate between these two extremes.
You’ve participated in a few videos, including with Baustelle and Sergio Cammariere. What’s your relationship with music like?
Music has always been an essential element in my life. It’s my way of escaping the here and now while remaining in the same place, and videos are a true passion of mine; I watch so many of them, especially at night when I can’t sleep.
What was the Venice Film Festival like this year?
Incredible. I think being on the jury is the best way to experience the festival. Even though it takes a lot of work – because you have to watch five films a day starting early in the morning – you don’t have that same anxiety one might feel participating in the festival on the other side of the barricade. Plus, I love to watch movies.
Do you like working more in films or television?
There’s an attention in making films that television just doesn’t have. On the other hand, the serial nature of television allows you to delve into a character and really get to explore it. Right now, I would like to work in both.
Talk to us about your Rome.
I’m Roman, born and bred, and I proudly lay claim to my origins. I’ve lived in Trastevere for 12 years and don’t have any plans to leave. I consider it my little village, where time stands still, except for Saturday evening, when everyone comes here to party. I truly love my city, even if it’s made me a bit angry as of late because it’s not valorized properly.
Your favourite places?
I love to run along the river in the morning, when there are very few people. The Janiculum walls are also all mine; I often go there to read, write or eat take away. Villa Pamphilj, with its bistro, perfect for a picnic, is stupendous. But what I would recommend the most, even to Romans, is to step outside the box, be curious and open the door to a church you’ve never noticed before, go into a courtyard… by doing this, I once found myself in the middle of a Congolese mass in a church on via del Governo Vecchio. It was wonderful!
What tips do you have for a proper Roman aperitivo?
Go to Coffee Pot in Trastevere, or Na Cosetta in Pigneto, where there’s often live music. A classic is Bar del Fico, where it’s better to go a bit early so you can have an aperitivo together with the old men playing chess. There are also Oasi della Birra and Angelina in Testaccio.