Dino De Laurentiis

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Dino De Laurentiis
Dino de laurentiis crop.jpg
Born Agostino De Laurentiis
(1919-08-08)8 August 1919
Torre Annunziata, Campania, Italy
Died 10 November 2010(2010-11-10) (aged 91)
Beverly Hills, California
Resting place
Cimitero Comunale Torre Annunziata
Occupation film producer
Years active 1938–2010
Spouse(s) Silvana Mangano
(m.1949-div.1988; 4 children)
Martha Schumacher
(m.1990–2010; his death, 2 children)

Agostino "Dino" De Laurentiis (8 August 1919 – 10 November 2010) was an Italian film producer. He was with Carlo Ponti, one of the two large producers that imposed Italian cinema on the international scene at the end of the Second World War. It has produced or co-produced more than 500 films, of which 38 were nominated for Academy Awards. He also had a brief acting career in the late 1930s and early 1940s.

Early life[edit]

He was born at Torre Annunziata in the province of Naples, and grew up selling spaghetti produced by his father. He was the brother of also important film producers Luigi and Aurelio De Laurentiis. He started his studies at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia in Rome in the years 1937-1938 then interrupted by the outbreak of the Second World War.


Film production[edit]

Following his first movie, L'ultimo Combattimento (1940), Laurentiis produced nearly 150 films during the next seven decades. In 1946 his company, the Dino de Laurentiis Cinematografica, moved into production. In the early years, De Laurentiis produced neorealist films such as Bitter Rice (1946) and the Fellini classics La Strada (1954) and Nights of Cabiria (1956), often in collaboration with producer Carlo Ponti. In the 1960s, Laurentiis built his own studio facilities, although these financially collapsed during the 1970s. During this period, though, De Laurentiis produced such films as Barabbas (1961), a Christian religious epic; Kiss the Girls and Make Them Die, an imitation James Bond film; Navajo Joe (1966), a spaghetti western; Anzio (1968), a World War II film; Barbarella (1968) and Danger: Diabolik (1968), both successful comic book adaptations; and The Valachi Papers (1972), made to coincide with the popularity of The Godfather.[citation needed]

In 1976,[1] De Laurentiis relocated to the USA and became an American citizen in 1986.[2] There, he set up studios, eventually creating his own studio, De Laurentiis Entertainment Group (DEG), based in Wilmington, North Carolina; the building of the studio quickly made Wilmington a busy center of film and television production.[3] During this period De Laurentiis made a number of successful and acclaimed films, including The Scientific Cardplayer (1972), Serpico (1973), Death Wish (1974), Mandingo (1975), Three Days of the Condor (1975), The Shootist (1976), Drum (1976), Ingmar Bergman's The Serpent's Egg (1977), Ragtime (1981), Conan the Barbarian (1982), and Blue Velvet (1986). It is for his more infamous productions that De Laurentiis' name has become known — the legendary King Kong (1976) remake, which was a commercial hit; Lipstick (1976), a rape and revenge drama; Orca (1977), a killer whale film; The White Buffalo (1977), a western; the disaster movie Hurricane (1979); the remake of Flash Gordon (1980); Halloween II (1981), the sequel to John Carpenter's 1978 classic horror film; David Lynch's Dune (1984); and King Kong Lives (1986). De Laurentiis also made several adaptations of Stephen King's works during this time, including The Dead Zone (1983), Cat's Eye (1985), Silver Bullet (1985), and Maximum Overdrive (1986); De Laurentiis produced Army of Darkness (1992) jointly with Robert Tapert and the movie's star Bruce Campbell,[citation needed] and they distributed the animated Transformers movie.[citation needed]

De Laurentiis also produced the first Hannibal Lecter film, Manhunter (1986). He passed on adapting Thomas Harris' sequel, The Silence of the Lambs (1991),[citation needed] but produced the two follow-ups, Hannibal (2001) and Red Dragon (2002), a remake of Manhunter. He also produced Hannibal Rising (2007), which tells the story of how Hannibal becomes a serial killer.

In his later choice of stories de Laurentiis displayed a strong preference for adaptations of successful books, especially sweeping classics like Barabbas (1961), The Bible: In the Beginning (1966), and Dune (1984). In 2010, he and his wife, fellow producer Martha Schumacher, purchased the movie rights to James Rollins' SIGMA Force series;[4][5][6] De Laurentiis observed: "James Rollins is a master storyteller. The Sigma Force series is rich with complex characters and thrilling action plots, and we can’t wait to turn this treasure trove of amazing stories into a great film franchise.".[7]

DDL Foodshow[edit]

In the 1980s, de Laurentiis owned and operated DDL Foodshow, a specialty retailer with two gourmet Italian markets in New York City and Los Angeles.[8]

Awards and recognitions[edit]

In 1958, he won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film for producing Nights of Cabiria, back when producers and directors would win the award instead of the country it was made in.

In 2001, he received the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.[citation needed]

In 2012, he received the America Award of the Italy-USA Foundation (in memory).[citation needed]

Selected filmography[edit]

Year Title Director
1940 Boccaccio Marcello Albani
1946 Black Eagle Riccardo Freda
1948 Bitter Rice Giuseppe De Santis
1949 The Wolf of the Sila Duilio Coletti
1952 Europa '51 Roberto Rossellini
1954 La Strada Federico Fellini
1955 Ulysses Mario Camerini
1956 War and Peace King Vidor
Nights of Cabiria Federico Fellini
1958 This Angry Age René Clément
1965 Battle of the Bulge Ken Annakin
1966 The Bible: In the Beginning John Huston
1967 Lo Straniero Luchino Visconti
1968 Danger: Diabolik Mario Bava
Barbarella Roger Vadim
1973 Serpico Sidney Lumet
1974 Death Wish Michael Winner
1975 Mandingo Richard Fleischer
1976 The Serpent's Egg Ingmar Bergman
1976 King Kong John Guillermin
Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull's History Lesson Robert Altman
Drum Steve Carver
The Shootist Don Siegel
1980 Flash Gordon Mike Hodges
1981 Halloween II Rick Rosenthal
Ragtime Miloš Forman
1982 Fighting Back Lewis Teague
Conan the Barbarian John Milius
Amityville II: The Possession Damiano Damiani
1983 Amityville 3-D Richard Fleischer
Halloween III: Season of the Witch Tommy Lee Wallace
Dead Zone David Cronenberg
1984 Conan the Destroyer Richard Fleischer
Firestarter Mark L. Lester
Dune David Lynch
The Bounty Roger Donaldson
1985 Maximum Overdrive Stephen King
Raw Deal John Irvin
Marie Roger Donaldson
Silver Bullet Daniel Attias
Cat's Eye Lewis Teague
Year of the Dragon Michael Cimino
Red Sonja Richard Fleischer
1986 Crimes of the Heart Bruce Beresford
Blue Velvet David Lynch
Trick or Treat Charles Martin Smith
Tai-Pan Daryl Duke
Manhunter Michael Mann
King Kong Lives John Guillermin
1987 Million Dollar Mystery Richard Fleischer
Hiding Out Bob Giraldi
Evil Dead II Sam Raimi
The Bedroom Window Curtis Hanson
1989 Collision Course Lewis Teague
From the Hip Bob Clark
1990 Sometimes They Come Back Tom McLoughlin
Desperate Hours Michael Cimino
1992 Once Upon a Crime Eugene Levy
Kuffs Bruce A. Evans
1993 Body of Evidence Uli Edel
Army of Darkness Sam Raimi
1994 Temptation Strathford Hamilton
1995 Solomon & Sheba Robert Young
Slave of Dreams Robert Young
Rumpelstiltskin Mark Jones (I)
Assassins Richard Donner
1996 Unforgettable John Dahl
Bound The Wachowskis
1997 Breakdown Jonathan Mostow
2000 U-571 Jonathan Mostow
2001 Hannibal Ridley Scott
2002 Red Dragon Brett Ratner
2006 The Last Legion Doug Lefler
2007 Hannibal Rising Peter Webber
Virgin Territory David Leland


His brief first marriage in Italy was annulled.[9] In 1949, De Laurentiis married actress Silvana Mangano, with whom he had four children: Veronica; Raffaella, who is also a film producer; Federico, another producer who died in a plane crash in 1981 (Dino's movie Dune is dedicated to him); and Francesca. De Laurentiis and Mangano divorced in 1988;[10] she died in 1989. In 1990, he married movie producer Martha Schumacher, with whom he had two daughters, Carolyna and Dina. One of his grandchildren is Giada De Laurentiis, host of Everyday Italian, Behind the Bash, Giada at Home, and Giada's Weekend Getaways on Food Network. His nephew is Aurelio De Laurentiis, also a film producer and the chairman of SSC Napoli football club.


De Laurentiis died on 10 November 2010 at his residence in Beverly Hills. He was 91 years old.[11][12][13][14]


  1. ^ Lane, John Francis (11 November 2010). "Obituary: Dino De Laurentiis". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 November 2010. 
  2. ^ Delugach, Al (20 February 1988). "De Laurentiis Resigns From Film Group". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 9 January 2015. 
  3. ^ "Laurentiis has others looking our way". Wilmington Morning Star. 9 July 1984. p. 1C. Retrieved 9 January 2015. 
  4. ^ MurderBooks (Murder By the Blog) (27 June 2011). "An Interview with James Rollins". Houston Chronicle. 
  5. ^ Rich, Katey (28 June 2010). "James Rollins' Sigma Force Series Goes From Paperback To The Screen". CinemaBlend. 
  6. ^ "The Sigma Force". IMDB Pro. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  7. ^ "James Rollins Sigma Series". mysterysequels.com. 2015. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  8. ^ Kalogerakis, George (February 2002). "Let's Do Lunch". Foodandwine.com. Retrieved 12 November 2010. 
  9. ^ Arnold, Laurence (11 November 2010). "Dino De Laurentiis, Producer of Film Spectacles, Dies at 91". Business Week. Retrieved 11 November 2010. 
  10. ^ Reuters (11 November 2010). "Italian film producer Dino De Laurentiis dies". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 11 November 2010. 
  11. ^ "Filmmaker Dino De Laurentiis Dies at Age 91". USA Today. 11 November 2010. Retrieved 11 November 2010. 
  12. ^ "Movie Producer Dino de Laurentiis dies". CNN. 11 November 2010. Retrieved 11 November 2010. 
  13. ^ Mondello, Bob (11 November 2010). "Dino De Laurentiis: For Decades, A Big-Picture Guy". NPR. Retrieved 11 November 2010. 
  14. ^ "Funeral services for De Laurentiis will be held Monday". Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles: Tribune Co). 13 November 2010. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 9 January 2015. 

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