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Io Capitano

Io Capitano

Io Capitano

Dir. Matteo Garrone
121 min

Q&A with Artistic Director Tommaso Cammarano


About the film

From writer-director Matteo Garrone comes an epic odyssey from West Africa to Italy told through the eyes and experiences of two Senegalese teenage cousins living in Dakar who yearn for a brighter future in Europe. But in between Senegal and Italy lies a tense and treacherous journey through myriad checkpoints, across the scorching Saharan desert, inside dank North African prisons, and atop the choppy waters of the Mediterranean Sea, where thousands before them have died packed inside seafaring vessels barely fit for passage. Matteo Garrone was initially wary of telling an immigrant’s story; this was neither his world nor his immediate experience. It became crucial to not simply re-tell these stories, but to have those who lived them, and lived to tell them, on set with him, whether in front of the camera or by his side during the production.

Winner of the Silver Lion for Best Director and the Marcello Mastroianni Award for Best Young Actor at the 80th Venice International Film Festival in 2023 — for newcomer Seydou Sarr, making his feature-film debut – Io Capitano is officially nominated for the Oscar for Best International Feature Film at this year’s 96th Academy Awards, and was recently nominated for two European Film Awards, including Best Film and Best Director.


Matteo Garrone is a Writer, Director, and Producer. In 1997 he made his first feature film, Terra di mezzo, with his production company, Archimede. In 1998 his second film, Guest and in 2000 Estate Romana. L'imbalsamatore, from 2002, received the David di Donatello award for Best Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor and the Nastro d'Argento for Best Editing. In 2005 he was in competition at the Berlin Film Festival with Primo Amore, and was awarded the Silver Bear for best soundtrack. In 2008, Garrone wrote and directed Gomorrah, which won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival; he won five European Film Awards including Best Film and Best Director, seven David di Donatello awards and 2 Nastri d'Argento prizes; Gomorrah was selected by Italy as the entry for Best International Film (then known as Best Foreign Language Film) at the Academy Awards and entered the Golden Globes as well as receiving BAFTA and César nominations. With Reality (2012) Garrone again won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival, followed by three David di Donatello awards and 3 Nastri d'Argento prizes; he returned to Cannes in 2015 with Tale of Tales (Il Racconto dei Racconti), winning 7 David di Donatello and 3 Nastri d'Argento awards. In 2018 Dogman was awarded the Best Actor prize at Cannes, subsequently winning 9 David di Donatello and 8 Nastri D'Argento prizes before being selected by Italy as the entry for Best International Film (then known as Best Foreign Language Film) at the Academy Awards. In 2019 he brought Pinocchio to theaters, winning 5 David di Donatello and 4 Nastri d'Argento awards as well as earning two Oscar nominations for Best Makeup and Best Costume Design.


Film Details

Program: Italian Film Festival
Release Year: 2023
Runtime: 121 min
Country/Region: Italy, Belgium, France
Language: Wolof, French
Print Source: Cohen Media Group
Tags: Drama


Director: Matteo Garrone
Producer: Matteo Garrone, Ardavan Safaee, Joseph Rouschop
Cinematographer: Paolo Carnera
Screenwriter: Matteo Garrone, Massimo Gaudioso, Massimo Ceccherini, Andrea Tagliaferri
Editor: Marco Spoletini
Composer: Andrea Farri
Principal Cast: Seydou Sarr, Moustapha Fall, Ahmed Hichem Yacoubi, Doodou Sagna, Khady Sy, Venus Gueye, Cheick Oumar Diaw, Joe Lassana