Il Cinema in Piazza

Piccolo America comes back to animate the roman summer nights with lights and life with his project “Il Cinema in Piazza”. Three open air arenas in three locations of the city, crossing it from the center to the outskirts, communicating and generating new synergies through exchanges and new relations. Trastevere, Tor Sapienza and Ostia, for a total of 104 nights of screenings of just as many movies; encounters with directors, actors, screenwriters and industry workers; retrospectives, great classics of the national and international heritage, as well as films dedicated to the youngest. Three screens with 8200 m^2 of surface area for the attendance. Not at all random the choice of the locations, that aims to surpass the dichotomy between the center and the outskirts: a public square of the historical center; the Porto turistico di Roma, since 2016 under preventive seizure from Tribunale di Roma – Section Misure e Prevenzione – through a judicial administrator with the intent of restoring lawfulness and make way to a relaunch project; the Parco del Casale della Cervelletta managed by the Ente Regionale RomaNatura, a green area of historical value to regenerate and enhance the urban fabric of the city.
“From the outskirts we started and in the outskirts we return. The ones born and raised there, as most of us, know it already. We know what it means to grind kilometres on public transports to reach a bookstore, a cinema, a theatre, a museum, or even just a place for meeting up in the evening with friends. And we know what it means to feel tight in such a large and populated district, yet so poor in sociality and culture. Thus, we too have decided to roll up our sleeves and try to replace the void and silence with dynamic participation. The experience of the past few years revealed that cultural and social planning does not stop at the organisation and planning of an outdoor cinema, but it is able to represent and promote growth, even economic, of all the activities in the neighborhood.

We want this project to give life to places where different ideas of living the city and new cultural expressions can find a home, where we can pose questions that allow us to build new perspectives, where we can discuss and reflect on the future of our city, the role of the cinema theatres and the cinematographic endeavor, of social, cultural and youth policies, of integration and inclusion, of the fight against crime, of the urban peripheries inside and on the margins of the cities. This is our idea of cultural and social participation, able to promote reflection on the role of culture itself in the process of educational, forming and working growth of young people, based on participatory planning, attentive to the needs of all, on a “ to know by doing “ process, whose fruits shall grow over time”.

The story of the boys and girls of Cinema America

A group of youngs coming from the outskirts of the city, after thoroughly mapping the abandoned spaces of Rome and months of assemblies with residents of the Rione Trastevere, the 13th of November 2012 begins a battle to save and safeguard the historical Cinema America from its imminent reconversion into parking lots and apartments. Two years later, having managed to stop the demolition of the theatre built in 1956 from a project by Angelo Di Castro, the kids reopen a small abandoned bakery, granted for free by some of the residents, converting it in a small essai theatre. And thus, thanks to the support from great masters like Bernardo Bertolucci, Franco Rosi and Ettore Scola, they keep fighting the battle to save the historical theatres of Rome.
Neither cinephiles nor students of the Seventh Art, they begin to give new colors to monuments, squares and outskirts of their city with great masterpieces of the cinematographic heritage, to the point of animating for sixty consecutive nights the place from which they started their endeavors to save the Cinema America: Piazza San Cosimato.
Various and many the times these kids had to find new headquarters and many the challenges, not least, after three years of hard work moved by the love for Trastevere, the one to spread out on the city, getting to illuminate neighborhood such as Ostia and Tor Sapienza with the initiative “Il Cinema in Piazza”.
They are now committed to save another theatre, the Cinema Troisi in Via Induno, project currently halted because of various appeals to the Tribunale Amministrativo Regionale del Lazio. Maybe you’ll find them soon there, cleaning up and building a better future, or seated on the ground in some of the squares of the city of Rome, lit by their projectors.

“Il Cinema in Piazza is a big public library, in which every evening all the ones who live and cross this city get to consult at the same time a different cinematographic work, borrowing it for a single collective vision on its big screen.” The boys and girls of Cinema America