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FiNews – FIs Producing John Duns Scotus Film

Ave Maria!

The Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate are producing a feature length dramatic film on the life of Blessed John Duns Scotus, the Franciscan who gave the theological explanation for the Immaculate Conception. The film is called “Duns Scoto”, Italian for Duns Scotus, and is written and directed by Fernando Muraca based on the book by Fr. Stefano Maria Manelli, “Beato Giovanni Duns Scoto” published by the FIs in Italy. Adriano Braidotti plays Blessed John Duns Scotus and is supported by Raffaele Proietti, Sebastiano Colla, Alessandro Chini, Camilla Diana and Emanuele Maria Gamboni in the role of young Duns Scotus along with many others including not a few Franciscans of the Immaculate.

The only thing left to finish on the film is the sound track for which they are currently in negotiations. The film is due to premiere in May 2010 on DVD and in some theaters as was done with the highly successful pro-life film “Bella” and negotiations are underway for putting it on Italian TV and entering it in film festivals. It will be in Italian, but there may be an English version.  We will be posting the trailer on AirMaria when it becomes available toward the end of April. So practice your Italian and stay tuned.

On the site of the filming with camera dolly on tracks, microphone boom, and high definition cameras. The high tech equipment makes a sharp contrast with the medieval monastery and period costumes. The director of photography was Massimo Lupi, famous for his creative cinematography in the Italian TV series Il Commissario Rex (Inspector Rex) about the adventures of Rex the police dog.

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The Abbey at Montelabate in Perugia where parts of the movie was filmed. Other locations were a nearby estate and also on the coast near Anconia.

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Adriano Braidotti as John Duns Scotus who is here praying for guidance from Mary as he is about to defend her prerogative of being immaculately conceived.  There are two goals of the film. One is to spread knowledge about Duns Scotus in view of his canonization, and then eventually to him being declared a Doctor of of the Church. The other is to help Christianize our important mass media culture that has sadly become so secular and even dehumanized.

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Padre Alfonso Bruno, head of FI media, is in the center with the clapper board and is Director of Production for the film. To the right is Fra Pasquale, FI who is playing a Dominican and Fra Ivo, FI on the left looks like he’s playing a Cistercian Monk.

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Emanuele Maria Gamboni as young John Duns Scotus. His early life is covered in a flashback after the opening scene when Scotus is exiled from the Sorbonne in Paris after he refused to sign a bill by Phillip the Fair, King of France, against Pope Boniface VIII.

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Lights, … Camera, … Action!

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Well, not much action in this scene, but it is very beautiful with professional lighting.

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Some rather scruffy looking friars. Fra Giles, FI is second from the left.

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The final scene of the movie is the rejoicing after Blessed John Duns Scotus successfully defends the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception at the Sorbonne in Paris. The victory is recognized by papal legates who attended the theological disputes. The large cast and colorful costumes make for a truly grand finale. There seems to be a tint of blue in many of the Franciscan’s habits. I wonder why…

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Preparing the camera and dolly.

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Working into the night hours. There’s no business like show business.

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Camilla Diana who plays the role of a young, pius girl named Mary who with Luis (Sebastiano Colla), a student at the Sorbonne, provide a means to control the plot and relate it to every day human life and drama.

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Director Fernando Muraca on the set.

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Alessandro Chini plays the young William of Occam who expresses his doubts and heterodox ideas to Scotus who then lovingly but promptly corrects him.

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Sebastiano Colla getting ready for his role as Luis.

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Angelo Poretti and Monica Sarracchini where in charge of the costumes.

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The large collection of costumes looks like a story in itself. Throughout the film as many as one hundred extras were used. Note the big wine barrels behind the racks from the monks wine making business.

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Fr. Alfonso reviewing some footage.

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It looks like an exciting and grand project. Certainly the Italian friars are learning quite a bit about film production and is a great addition to their extensive media efforts which include printing, radio, internet and TV. Hopefully this film will be a success both in regard to promoting the Christian faith and in regard to having enough financial success to at least be able to do another film like this. Please keep this in your prayers.

Ave Maria!

6 Responses to “FiNews – FIs Producing John Duns Scotus Film”

  1. Tina Says:

    Wonderful! I’m looking forward to this!

  2. Immaculatæ Omnia Says:

    Ave Maria! This looks awesome! I can’t wait to see it (especially since my brother, Fra Pio Maximilian Mary, is going to be in it.)

  3. Rachel Says:

    Blessed be God for this magnificent work!

  4. Lilian Milla Says:

    Wonderful ! God bless all people involved. Praise God and Honour to His Holy Mother. I can’t wait. Thank You My God, we need more of this.

  5. Mickey Says:

    I think the FI’s should begin to include the Hat Duns Scotus is wearing as part of their habit attire in their Constitutions. This seems fitting since their order is faithfully Scotistic.

  6. apostolate Says:

    Ave Maria!

    Mickey,

    Thanks for the suggestion but I don’t think Dunce Caps will work to well for our habits. Although, It would be good for our humility. We’ll have to think about it. :)

    God Bless

    Fra Roderic

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