Literally translating as “in the wolf's mouth”, this famous Italian phrase is much more interesting to say than “good luck”.
And in some parts of Italy, simply saying buona fortuna (good luck) is sometimes considered to bring the opposite.
Though it may sound a bit dramatic, people in Italy really do use this idiomatic phrase in everyday conversation.
Much like the English “break a leg”, the phrase is used a lot in the theatre. But also when wishing good fortune to someone about to take on a daunting or challenging task – such as sitting an Italian language exam, or visiting the local prefettura.
The real confusion though arises over what exactly you're supposed to say in response.