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Daniel Craig arrives in Rome to shoot Bond film

James Bond star Daniel Craig has arrived in Rome to film Spectre, the next installment of the spy thriller series.

Daniel Craig arrives in Rome to shoot Bond film
Italian actress Monica Bellucci and British actor Daniel Craig pose during a photocall to promote the 24th James Bond film 'Spectre' at Rome's city hall. Photo: Tiziana Fabi/AFP

Craig, along with the cast of the film, arrived in the Italian capital on Wednesday, Italian daily La Stampa reported.

There he was photographed alongside fellow star, the Italian actress Monica Bellucci. The pair were welcomed by Rome’s mayor Ignazio Marino and Culture Minister Dario Francheschini at Rome City Hall.

Filming will begin on Thursday and the cast will remain in the city until mid-March. The film will be released on November 6th in Italy.

Filming locations include the city’s business district EUR, as well as Nomentana, Corso Vittorio, Lungotevere, via della Conciliazione, the Verano cemetery and Monti.  

The first scene will be shot at the entrance to the Museum of Roman Civilization. 

Meanwhile, residents in the city are already looking at ways to cash in on the film star's visit with property owners on via Nomentana reportedly charging up to €1,000 a day to those who want to watch a car chase scene live, the British daily, The Mirror reported.

Filming for the 24th James Bond film is taking place in various parts of the world including Tangier in Morocco, Mexico City, London and Sölden in Austria, where filming is still in progress.

The cast’s arrival in the city comes after reports that three British members of the film’s crew, aged 28, 52 and 63 were injured on the Austrian set for the film.

The accident happened during the filming of a stunt scene in Sölden when a car veered off the road and crashed into a camera platform.

The Austrian Press Agency reported that one British man was caught between the car and the platform and seriously injured, and two other crew members where thrown off the platform.

One also suffered serious injuries and the third man escaped with only minor injuries. Two of the men were airlifted to hospital and the third was treated by medics at the scene.

According to the Hollywood Reporter one of the injured men is second-unit director Terry Madden, who suffered multiple fractures.

It was the second accident to hit Spectre. Last week James Bond star Daniel Craig injured his knee while shooting a fight scene at Pinewood Studios in London. 

Spectre is directed by Sam Mendes and opens in the UK on October 23rd and worldwide two weeks later.

It also stars double Oscar-winner Christoph Waltz as the villain, Lea Seydoux, Naomie Harris and Dave Bautista.

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FILM

Venice Film Festival fights for impact amid coronavirus curbs and cancellations

What if you threw a film festival and nobody came?

Venice Film Festival fights for impact amid coronavirus curbs and cancellations
File photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP
That, in essence, is the challenge facing organisers of this year's Venice Film Festival, the glamorous annual competition where stars, critics, photographers and industry executives mingle on the bustling Lido, overlooking sandy beaches and the blue Adriatic.
   
Provided, of course, it's a normal year.
   
But in 2020, the world's oldest film festival is forced to walk a tightrope between preserving its lustre as the premier launch pad for Academy Award-winning films, while safely navigating the coronavirus crisis and averting the controversy over gender inequality that has dogged it in the past.
   
Opening Wednesday and continuing until September 12, the prestigious event now in its 77th year will be the first international film festival since the pandemic shuttered competitions around the world.
   
It has put in place a host of safety measures — from limited seating to thermal scanners, to a fan-free red carpet — to protect attendees as Covid-19 cases continue to climb in Italy and around the world.
   
In July, festival director Alberto Barbera declared the event “saved” as he announced the 18 films among the approximately 60 presented that would vie for the top award, the Golden Lion.
 
  
He promised that the festival would preserve the “liveliness of contemporary cinema”.
   
Despite its scaled-down size with theatre capacity reduced by about half, La Biennale di Venezia takes on greater importance this year due to the cancellation of rival film festivals across the globe, among them the glitzy Cannes Film Festival on the Cote d'Azur in France.
 
 
But just days ahead of the opening, organisers are scrambling to navigate uncharted territory amid uncertain attendance and last-minute cancellations.     
   
Whereas Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep and Scarlett Johansson provided the star firepower at last year's festival, ongoing travel restrictions — especially a travel ban from the United States into Europe — mean that most Hollywood elites will be no shows, along with actors and directors from China, India and South America.
   
Those arriving from outside Europe's Schengen zone will have to submit results of a Covid-19 test just before their departure, with a second test carried out in Venice, meaning that some attendees may have to cancel.
   
Earlier this week, the festival announced that American actor Matt Dillon would be a last-minute substitute on the jury for Romanian director Crisit Puiu.
   
No reason was given for Puiu's absence, but industry trade magazines noted he had given a speech earlier this month in which he said it was “inhumane” to watch movies with a mask on.
   
Those confirmed as attending include, among others, British actress Tilda Swinton, Spanish director Pedro Almodovar, US director Oliver Stone and Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen.
 
 
 
More women directors
 
The uncertain lineup of stars and dearth of top names leaves Australian actress Cate Blanchett, president of the jury, to take up the mantle of celebrity — and social activism — at Venice.
   
Blanchett was the leader of the #MeToo women's march up the red carpet steps at Cannes two years ago that sought to bring attention to the lack of parity and diversity in cinema.
   
The presence of Blanchett helps raise such awareness while the festival seeks to stanch criticism levelled in recent years over the glaring lack of women directors in festivals' top lineups.
 
The Oscar-winning headliner told Variety magazine on Thursday that this year's eight women directors in the main competition lineup of Venice is “a direct response to the positive advances that have been made this year”.
   
Others say it is too early to tell whether a page has turned.
   
“It's all about being consistent and diligent and believing that women make movies as well as men, and using that in the way you programme,” said Melissa Silverstein, founder and publisher of “Women and Hollywood”, which advocates for gender diversity and inclusion in film.
   
Last year's festival opened under controversy after the inclusion in the lineup of French-Polish director Roman Polanski, who fled the United States after his 1977 conviction of rape of a 13-year-old girl.
   
There were also only two female directors in the selection. In both 2018 and 2017, only one female director was represented.   
 
Blanchett said more was riding on the jury's decisions this year, given the limited opportunities for filmmakers to show their work publicly, due to the coronavirus closures.
   
“So, whatever the deliberations the jury will make will be more impactful. I don't take that responsibility or privilege lightly.”
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