Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Mick Davis|
|Produced by||Philippe Martinez
|Written by||Mick Davis|
|Music by||Guy Farley|
|Editing by||Emma E. Hickox|
|Distributed by||Bauer Martinez Studios|
|Release dates||29 September 2004 (France)|
|Running time||128 min|
|Box office||$195,378 (US)
$1,466,013 (worldwide theatrical)
Modigliani is a 2004 semi-biographical film of the Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani.
Set in Paris in 1919, biopic centers on the life of Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani, focusing on his last days as well as his rivalry with Pablo Picasso. Modigliani, an Italian Jew living in Paris, has fallen in love with Jeanne, a young and beautiful French Catholic girl. The couple has an illegitimate child, and Jeanne's bigoted father sends the baby to a faraway convent to be raised by nuns. Modigliani is distraught and needs money to rescue and raise his child. The answer arrives in the shape of Paris' annual art competition. Prize money and a guaranteed career await the winner.
Neither Modigliani, nor his dearest friend and rival Picasso have ever entered the competition, believing that it is beneath true artists like themselves. But push comes to shove with the welfare of his child on the line, and Modigliani signs up for the competition in a drunken and drug-induced tirade.
Picasso follows suit and all of Paris is aflutter with excitement at who will win. With the balance of his relationship with Jeanne on the line, Modigliani tackles this work with the hopes of creating a masterpiece, and knows that all the artists of Paris are doing the same. Once completed he calls his dearest friend to take the painting to the competition and to make sure no one touches it. While his friend is taking the painting, Modigliani is at City Hall waiting for him to get legally married with Jeanne. After being the last person to leave, he decides to celebrate with a one drink. Unfortunately his drinking habit made him drink a couple more than expected.
The competition was going to start at eight o'clock, and when he realizes he is late he leaves without paying. Two guys that work for the bar follow him and assault him, once they found no money they left him in floor half dead. He wasn't able to celebrate his victory, but when he arrived home Jeanne took care of him, but then his artist friends came and took him to the hospital. He dies later on and Jeanne commits suicide.
- Hippolyte Girardot ... Maurice Utrillo
- Eva Herzigova ... Olga Khokhlova (Picasso's wife)
- Udo Kier ... Max Jacob
- Susie Amy ... Beatrice Hastings
- Peter Capaldi ... Jean Cocteau
- Louis Hilyer ... Léopold Zborowski
- Stevan Rimkus ... Chaim Soutine
- Dan Astileanu ... Diego Rivera
- George Ivascu ... Moise Kisling
- Michelle Newell ... Eudoxie Hébuterne
- Frederico Ambrosino ... Little Dedo
- Miriam Margolyes ... Gertrude Stein
The film was not well received by critics. New York Times critic Stephen Holden wrote, "The best and maybe the only use to be made of the catastrophic screen biography Modigliani is to serve as a textbook outline of how not to film the life of a legendary artist."
Film festival screenings
Appearing at a number of Film Festivals in 2004 and 2005, Modigliani saw its world premiere at the Gala Selection of the Toronto Film Festival. Also of particular note, it opened the Miami International Film Festival in 2005, and also played at the Bergen International Film Festival, the Washington Jewish Film Festival, The Capri Hollywood Film Festival, the Bangkok International Film Festival, The Mexico City International Contemporary Film Festival, Spain's Mostra de Valencia Cinema del Mediterranean, Italy’s Festival Due Mondi, California's San Jose Jewish Film Festival, and the Sonoma Film Festival.
Box office and rentals
Modigliani had a worldwide theatrical gross of $1,466,013: bringing in $1,260,848 in eight markets and doing $205,165 in the U.S. during 14 weeks in 2005, during which it only screened in 2–9 theatres. The top market for Modigliani was Italy, where it brought in $1,009,517 (69% of the global total).
Making its French theatrical debut on May 18, 2004, later it opened in Russia, Belgium and Ukraine, as well as launching on video in Israel. In 2005, it opened in Dutch, Italian, Romanian, Swedish, Danish and Norwegian theatres—and on DVD in Thailand, Hong Kong, Brazil, Canada and Finland. In 2006 it opened in theatres in Poland, Portugal and Spain; on Argentine TV; and on DVD in Australia, The Czech Republic and New Zealand. In January 2007 it opened on Hungarian and Puerto Rican TV. In 2008 it debuted on DVD in Germany and Austria. As from 10 March 2008, the film has became available in the U.K. as a DVD rental.
- Holden, Stephen (1 July 2005), "Piling on the Paint With a Trowel in Paris, or Romania", New York Times