Italian President Giovanni Leone, Communist Party Secretary Enrico Berlinguer and actors Burt Lancaster and Vittorio Gassman were among the many distinguished public figures who attend the funeral of film director Luchino Visconti in Rome on Friday (19 March).
GV large crowd outside church
SV Enrico Berlinguer embracing Visconti sister and brother with other politicians shaking their hands
GV PAN DOWN church TO coffin being carried in amid clapping
CU Leaflet on wall "Luchino Visconti"
SV President Giovanni Leone entering church
SV Members of public entering church
SV coffin with flowers during service
CU ZOOM OUT FROM Burt lancaster standing alongside Vittorio Gassman
Initials RH/0028 RH/MF/AU/0048
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Background: Italian President Giovanni Leone, Communist Party Secretary Enrico Berlinguer and actors Burt Lancaster and Vittorio Gassman were among the many distinguished public figures who attend the funeral of film director Luchino Visconti in Rome on Friday (19 March).
Signor Visconti died at his home on Wednesday (17 March) after complications following an attack of influenza. He was 69.
Although best known as a film maker, Signor Visconti was a man of many talents and he was also highly successful in staging opera productions, often with Maria Callas in the starring role.
His first successful film was "Rocco and His Brothers", made in 1960. It dealt with the problems faced by southern Italian farmers migrating to the north. Others which attracted world-wide appreciation were "The Leopard" about the decline of feudalism in Sicily, "Death In Venice" and more recently "The Conversation Piece". When he died he had been engaged in the production of a new film, "The Innocent".
Signor Visconti was born into a noble Milan family and his full name was Count Luchino Visconti, Duke of Modern. But he grew up to espouse leftwing causes and throughout his work there was a continuing theme of man as the victim of his environment, with an emphasis on class and history.
SYNOPSIS: A large crowd gathered outside a Rome church on Friday to pay their last respects to Italian film director Luchino Visconti who died on Wednesday, aged 69. Among them was Italian Communist Party Secretary Enrico Berlinguer, seen here with members of the Visconti family. Signor Visconti had been suffering from influenza, which was followed by complications.
Applause for the mortal remains of the man who ranked in the forefront of Italian film directors. Among his most famous works were "Rocco and His Brothers", "The Leopard" and "Death in Venice".
Italian President Giovanni Leone attended the funeral -- which was also open to those members of the Roman public who could squeeze themselves into the crowded church.
The cinema was represented by stars who had worked with Signor Visconti-among them American actor Burt Lancaster and Italian Vittorio Gassman. When he died Visconti had been working on a new film called "The Innocent".