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Italian film director Ermanno Olmi dies at 86

2018/5/8 10:15:39   source:Xinhua

Italian neo-realist film director Ermanno Olmi has died aged 86, ANSA news agency reported Monday.

Born on July 24, 1931, in the town of Treviglio in the northern Lombardy region where Milan is located, in the course of his long and prolific career Olmi won the top awards at the Cannes and Venice film festivals, a number of David di Donatello awards (Italy's Oscars) and a Venice Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement in 2008.

"We have lost a cinematic master and a great example of culture and life," Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni tweeted. "His enchanted gaze has narrated and made us understand our country's roots."

"The death of Ermanno Olmi deprives Italian culture of a giant, one of the greatest masters of Italian cinema," Culture Minister Dario Franceschini told ANSA.

Olmi used long, slow takes featuring non-actors in authentic locations to depict ordinary people dealing with the dramas of their daily lives.

"My ambition... perhaps because of my peasant-worker background, is to look at the world with others, not as an aristocratic intellectual," Olmi has said, according to the IMDB movie database.

His two early masterpieces, "Il Posto (The Place)" (1961) and "The Fiancés" (1963), tell the stories of a small-town boy who gets a job in the big city, and of an engaged couple who must separate when the man finds work in Sicily.

"Mr. Olmi has... made an imposing body of work that eloquently speaks to the heart," the New York Times wrote in 2001. "His psychologically acute character studies are as close as fictional films have come to showing real life in all its complexity and ordinariness."

Olmi was married and had three children, including cinematographer Fabio Olmi and movie producer Elisabetta Olmi.

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