“Mamma Roma” is a one-woman show that Anne wrote and performs, based on the legendary Italian actress, Anna Magnani. A staged reading of the play was held at Theatre Theatre directed by Larry Moss. “Mamma Roma” was chosen for the prestigious “Mentor Project “at the Cherry Lane Theatre in NYC. A section of it (below) was also performed at Vicki Abelson’s “Women Who Write”. Anne is currently adapting “Mamma Roma” into a screenplay to be shot in Rome.
HISTORY OF ANNA MAGNANI:
Anna Magnani, the Italian film icon, started her career in touring companies and vaudeville. Her distinctive comedic work made her a popular cabaret performer in pre-World War II Italy. But in “Open City”, Roberto Rossellini’s Neo-Realist masterpiece (1945), the international film world took note of her heart-wrenching performance as Pina. With her intense emotional authenticity and earthy vitality, she became the most admired actress of her time and queen of the Neo-Realist movement.
There have been many global film stars, Gina Lollobrigida, Claudia Cardinale, Bridget Bardot…all of whom were cinema sex sirens. Anna Magnani was not by any means a conventional bombshell. Yet with her disheveled hair and unglamorous appearance, she became one of the most renown, original and sensuous of European movie stars. Anna’s electric personality, unique rawness and distinctive style magnetized audiences.
Anna went on to do many great films including, “The Human Voice”, “Bellissima”, “Mamma Roma” and “The Golden Coach”. She worked with the finest directors of her time: DeSica, Visconti, Pasolini and Renoir. Established internationally, Anna was soon sought after by Hollywood. She won the Academy Award in 1955 for “The Rose Tattoo”, a role written for her by her great friend, Tennessee Williams. Hers was the first Oscar to be won by an Italian. Anna’s career continued in America with George Cukor’s “Wild Is The Wind” opposite Anthony Quinn, Sidney Lumet’s “The Fugitive Kind” opposite Marlon Brando, and Stanley Kramer’s “The Secret Of San Vittorio” again opposite Anthony Quinn.
When film roles dwindled, Anna continued her theatre career including “La Lupe” directed by Franco Zefferelli and “Medea”.
When their beloved Anna died in 1973, grief-stricken Romans practically shut down the city. Anna has often been called The Mother of Rome.