Antonella Salvucci is a seasoned Italian actress who started off her career as a successful fashion model. She has enjoyed success in TV in roles including Doctor in the Family 3, The beauty of women 2, Carabinieri, Marshal Rocca, Police Department, Rex, It was my brother, Moana, and The season of crimes. Her movie achievements include a leading role in The Sentimental Education of Eugenie, directed by Aurelio Grimaldi. She has enjoyed supporting and part roles in The Night of the Sinner by Alessandro Perrella, The Torturer by Lamberto Bava, The Family Friend by Paolo Sorrentino, The Red Dot by Marco Carlucci, The Anger by Louis Nero and Red Riding Hood by Giacomo K. Cimini. Antonella spends her time between Italy and the US and has been working on new projects to add to her already very respectable acting repertoire.
Antonella: Yes, modeling for me was a way to overcome my shyness, to test myself in front of a photographic lens and I started during my adolescence. I have always taken this passion of mine with great seriousness and professionalism, so much so that they also called me for underwear, bridal and prêt-à-porter fashion shows. A very privileged dimension but for a communicator like me it was a rather tight role and I started to search for other ways to express my creativity, and slowly giving voice to my great love for acting. So, mostly during the summer, I presented various live shows, not only of fashion but also of cinema, music and beauty contests. I tried to set aside an adequate sum of money to be able to pay for the flight to Los Angeles and acting schools there in America. So instead of taking holidays I used to spend my summer periods in USA, closed in theatres, preparing scenes and practicing with actors that came from the various places in the world, each with its own way, with its different culture and languages and each with its own way of acting. All this was for me the most useful school of life for my artistic and human training.
From these contacts in America then maybe we met with groups to give life to the first films, short films or theatrical performances without forgetting that in the theatres important casting directors, directors, and producers always attentive to new talents came to see us and it often happened that we were given a job opportunity!
MODE: You travel between the US and Italy regularly. What would you say are the main differences between the movie industry in Italy and United States? Antonella: They are two beautiful and complementary worlds that inspire and influence each other. They still tell the beauty of the fabulous 60s in which Italian cinema was a school in the world and the great American directors have taken much of that world and that timeless Dolce Vita as a model. We Italians admire American cinema for its majesty, its special effects, and the Americans admire our great heart in knowing how to describe stories and knowing how to trace feelings but even more our craftsmanship which is truly a distinctive element to leave everyone speechless. It is not by chance, for example, that on the great American sets there are Italian professionals who are awarded with the Oscars such as Dante Ferretti for scenography, Alessandro Bertolazzi for make up and visual effects, and other award winning talented directors such as Paolo Sorrentino with whom I have had the good fortune to work. I like to think that there is this continuous thread that links Italian cinema to American cinema for many years to come because I find it a really interesting exchange to give life to ambitious projects in the near future!
MODE: What were your biggest challenges at the beginning of your acting career? Antonella: The biggest challenge especially at the beginning of my career is a bit common to all the artists, you hear a burning fire, an engine inside that pulls you towards the light, towards the people, towards the stage but it is not really easy to get the right credibility, sometimes it seems that you are Napoleon conquering the world, a kind of visionary hero that is difficult to believe. Then everything begins to take shape with the first small roles, the first TV appearances and, as if by magic, someone with a visionary spirit more than you begins to give you some job opportunities and if you do well you continue, you continue from one role to the other acquiring the respect of those working in cinema and TV.
MODE: You always look healthy and fabulous. What exercise routines or diets do you follow to keep your fabulous shape? Antonella: The classic rules that they taught us when I was a model are always valid for all times and that is do not drink, do not smoke, go to bed early, take care of your skin. I would rather say that they must be kept in mind but very often they must also be transgressed in the sense that even in the diet you have to give your metabolism a good blow to make it awaken, at least once a week, otherwise the body will recline. So part of my beauty secret is to eat chocolate every day since it stimulates endorphins, the hormone of happiness. Having a nice breakfast is for me a healthy rule so as not to drag my hunger all day long, to have excellent walks at a fast pace, and to make love with those who truly attract and like you not only physically but mentally for a natural exchange of good energies.
MODE: What genre of movies have you enjoyed working on the most? Antonella: From an early age I have always been fascinated by thriller, horror films, but who could have imagined that I would be involved in it and be defined by the press as “the queen of horror” with the record of deaths on the set; they say that means you extend life, so we will see each other often. I worked among others with Lamberto Bava in “The Torturer”, Giacomo K. Cimini in “Red Riding Hood”, “The Night of the Sinner”, acting alongside one of my myths like Robert Englund aka Freddy Kruger in Nightmare. In short, many satisfactions and many dreams yet to come true, at this moment I feel particularly suitable for the brilliant comedies and the romantic comedies in the style of Garry Marshall.
MODE: The coronavirus has slowed down the activities of most industries including movie and theatre productions. How has it affected your plans and what have you been doing in the meantime? Antonella: From one moment to the next we found ourselves encapsulated in a glass bell with the sole aim of having to protect ourselves from an invisible and unpredictable enemy. Initially we had all underestimated the danger and continued to work but the lockdown was necessary and very useful. I was in Monaco / Monte Carlo hosting an international film fest dedicated to films on peace, non-violence and human rights, I was in contact with artists from all over the world and, for the most part, Japanese and Chinese so full of good values and enlightened in their way of wanting to give new inspirations in the direction of the common good. The magic of those moments overcame collective fear. I went back home to Rome and, after a few days, the lockdown took place in Italy. My feelings were so confused and in contrast with each other, I kept firm my usual positive disposition that brought out the right strength to be able to calm others even if, I confess, behind this firm armor there was so much fear, uncertainty, emotion due to the continuous attacks by the media that gave in real time the data of the contagion totally out of control. Moment after Moment, the situation seemed to worsen without a margin of ascent and all this, even if we wanted to deny it, internally isolated us even more than social distancing. The external scenery was surreal. I remembered shooting a series on the style of “The walking dead”, sometimes during the night I dreamed that I was still on the set hoping that what we were experiencing was just my nightmare but at times the reality exceeds fantasy and then you have to activate all your cognitive skills to survive, especially emotionally. The ability of the human being to activate and bring out their talent when under pressure is impressive, so I decided to follow my dynamic nature and also the words of the Pope who tried to instil courage in the world and who underlined “despite this period of uncertainty and blockade, don’t waste these days.” So I reinforced myself, day after day, with the strength of gratitude to be safe and sound and to protect my loved ones, and I engaged myself in all those backlog jobs that for the usual races and trips I kept postponing, so I did smart working, reading books, studying scripts, new scripts. I also did some live readings like “The Divine Comedy” by the great Dante Alighieri. in short, I took refuge in culture but not only as food for thought but also good food that I cooked while singing and dancing to give joy first of all to myself and then to all my loyal followers who follow me in all the stories on Instagram. So I was happy that also some doctors, before going to work in the hospital every early morning, told me that I was an inspiration to keep going, keep fighting the virus and to expect good fortune! Surely the world of entertainment has been one of the most penalized sectors because the shows are done live and with an audience, the theatres must be forcibly closed, without even thinking about cinema where it was also not possible to go to. Also if you want to shoot a new film it becomes extremely difficult to imagine social distancing between actors since acting is based on physical contact and feeding off action/reaction that would be unnatural with a distance. The film and TV industry is changing in the direction of the new rules, meanwhile it will be necessary to sanitize every single corner of a set, all the professionals and workers must be rigorous with the new general codes, all the rules of hygiene, and of course this will make the whole wonderful movie machine move with a little more slowness, but all of us as artists feel even more privileged and even more useful precisely because in this period of quarantine, everyone has taken refuge in the escapism and emotions that only a good film can give you. I see my artistic future in a proactive way, we all have a great desire to express now, after having internalized these conflicting feelings for months and we will return to review the stars, as the Great Dante Alighieri wrote in his days, certainly more strong, more aware of knowing how to appreciate every single aspect of daily life and also, if possible, more creative than ever, just as happened in the post-war period with Neorealism and the great flowering of cinema and all the arts. In my romantic vision that knows how to appreciate the people around, it was a pain not having been able to have a confrontation and above all a real hug that heals every moment of human weakness, I cried unexpectedly due to my sensitive spirit, I was moved to listen to everyone singing from the balconies the songs that became modern prayers, but I’m sure we will go back to having fun together, to toast to life, to toast to us and how we dealt with this world pandemic, with our heads held high and with the light in our eyes.
MODE: Are there any movie or theatre projects we can look forward to seeing you in for the near future? Antonella: I am happy that a film has just been edited where I have a double role, the first as a model and the second as assistant director, a role with an ambivalent personality and very stimulating in terms of acting. In addition, I wear a dark wig in the movie therefore there is also a certain physical transformation which is a very intriguing aspect for me in the movies. Speaking of thriller/horror, it is the remake of the famous cult by Lucio Fulvio “Nightmare Concert” and is titled “Nightmare Symphony”. I also had a TV project for a global platform that I am looking forward to being able to start shooting so that wherever you are in the world you can follow it. It will be fantastic to listen to your comments, your impressions and to know that you follow me with affection. Peace & Love to everyone.