A movie set becomes a metaphor for the tragic rise of World War II in Europe in this historical drama. It’s 1939, and as Benito Mussolini rules Italy and war sweeps through Europe, Italian film producer Davide Rieti (Alfred Molina) is attempting to set up his latest project, a historical epic adapted from Puccini’s opera Tosca. While Rieti is short on money, that’s the least of his problems — as a gay Jew, he’s an easy target for the fascist pogroms which have become commonplace in Europe, and working at Rome’s lavish Cinecitta Studio is one of his few respites from the grim realities of life under Mussolini. Eager to turn his adaptation of Tosca into an international epic, Rieti hires Hungarian Lazlo Molnar (Andras Balint) to direct, and casts German Kristina Baumgarten (Catherine McCormack), Italian Maria Grazia (Surama De Castro) and British James Clavel (Jonathan Pryce) in the leading roles. Rieti also finds room in the cast for his handsome lover Renzo (Rupert Friend), but while the cast offers one another a certain grudging respect (and Baumgarten and Clavel enjoy a brief romance off-set), the tensions that have gripped the world can be felt on set, and fascist and anti-fascist factions arise among the crew. The turmoil is aided and abetted by the presence of Annibale (Ivano Marescotti), the film’s chief backer and an ardent supporter of Il Duce, while free-spirited director Molnar makes no secret of his leftist views.(*)
The moon and the Stars (2007)
Together in Rome to shoot a film, a German actress (McCormack) and an English actor (Pryce) contend with forces that complicate their romance as well as the production itself.
Directed by John Irvin and Written by Peter Barnes and Fabio Carpi.
Cast: Jonathan Pryce, Alfred Molina, Catherine McCormack, András Bálint, Robert Davide, Rupert Friend, Joanna Scanlan, Surama De Castro.
This clip is dedicated to the scenes of Surama De Castro in the film, but you can also see some of Rupert’s scenes (Some of the hottest btw)
As usual (unfortunately), with older films of Rupert, it was impossible for me to find any interview or reference to him in connection with this movie, so the only thing that I can do is to show you the most “graphic part” of his work. Don’t forget to check Rupert’s screencaps from The Moon and the Stars via this link. Not a great quality, but still good ones 😉 Click on the first photo to advance through the gallery.