Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Letter From Italy: Explaining Why My Pro-Women-Victims Focus In My Forthcoming Movie Samhain

Posted by Stefano Torrese

[Above: Stefano Torrese (right) and his co-author and co-producer Diego Antolini discuss Samhain]

While reading Mr. Kercher’s open letters [here and here] we found so many resonances with our ideas and feelings about the sad drama that occurred to Meredith, feelings which had led us to initiate the film project “Samhain - A Halloween Tale”.

Our starting point was to write a story which could deliver a strong message on behalf of all women whose life had ended because of the violence and ignorance of others; to provide our contribution to making people think and re-think about the society we live in, where nobody is safe, children or students or workers.

Then, as we deepened the research into the subject, and more material came out about the judicial case and the trials, we witnessed, as John sadly remarked, a singular yet logical - for our society - phenomenon, that of the rising of a celebrity, who is in fact charged for murder and sentenced to many years in prison.

Last spring we started to see the first buzz in the US about our movie project and those of others. A few months later we heard the inevitable: an American TV production decided to shoot a documentary about AMANDA KNOX’S trial paths.

As fall approached, we trimmed and refined our story into a thriller with a moral, and a big, positive twist in the end, which developed furthermore a strong message. This message we made clear during our first press conference on last October 28, in the Palazzo della Regione of Perugia, the most important institutional house of local government.

We said that our movie is not - and will never be - a movie about Amanda Knox; as a matter of fact it is not even a movie about Meredith in the sense of the exploitation of her image for economic purposes.

“Samhain - A Halloween tale” is a tale with a moral in the classical form, inspired by a true fact (obviously Meredith’s murder) but then touching many other topics like the very ancient celtic name of Halloween “Samhain”, the possibility to mold the timeframe, and other esoteric elements.

The story turns around former FBI agent Bryan Nolan, who left the US following the personal drama of the disappearance of his little sister Susan.

Once in Perugia, he hears about the murder of a young student and after a series of signs and signals, he realizes the spirit of the young girl is trying to establish contact with him; the spirit seeks for peace and justice, and it is also the key to understand what really happened to Bryan’s sister.

As you can tell from this brief synopsis, our story doesn’t contain the Hollywood-like sparkling and kitsch elements prone to making the protagonist a star or a celebrity. Our movie is difficult, and will be difficult to make because it talks about life, death, and the afterlife.

During the last few months we have received pressure from local and international press about what we really want to make, and so we wanted to be clear: if our movie has ever to be linked to Meredith, it would be in her honor, dedicated to her memory, and it would not use her image.

We said this after noticing the hideous growth in terms of popularity of people who are in jail for murder, and yet became a money machine, and also the attitude of the general audience who are being misled and manipulated into the belief that these people in jail shouldn’t be there.

This shocked us and prompted our more immediate action: we can write and we can make movies, so we will make our contribution to the truth by the means of telling a story and deliver a message to the audience:


We cannot accept that, what happened to Meredith happened - and is happening - to many other girls in the world. We need to remember this. We need to remember Meredith and through her memory, keep this feeling of hope alive, that what happened to her will eventually cease to happen.

We need to disseminate the message as strongly as we can, and perhaps things could change so that Meredith’s drama would not have occurred in vain.

Our hope here is to respectfully share with Meredith’s family and friends an explanation of what’s behind our project, let them know what we are doing before they read it possibly wrongly put in the papers; and encourage their feelings if they wish to guide us.

A good project about a person without deep caring and respect for that person - be she alive or not - would be a failure to begin with. Meredith evokes our deep caring and respect.

[Below, Stefano Torrese and his co-producer Diego Antolini discuss the Italian film industry]

[Below, the interim trailer for Stefano Torrese’s movie Samhain: A Halloween Tale]

[Below, the poster for Stefano Torrese’s movie Samhain: A Halloween Tale]

Posted by Stefano Torrese on 01/26/11 at 03:08 PM in Various hypothesesExcellent reportingMovies on case


Arline Kercher cried out when she heard about the Lifetime Amanda Knox movie that it should be the real victim, Meredith, who is being revered and not the one who cruelly cut short her life.

Stefano felt that way long before Arline spoke up.

Here in an impressionistic way is his movie tribute to Meredith and to other women cruelly taken away Stefano is liked and respected by mutual contacts in Italy and our Facebook messaging back and forth has been moving and sincere.

Meredith continues to have a real following in Italy as do so many lost and murdered women like her (Sonia Marra, for example, who we have often posted on here) and many are dwelled upon weekly on Italian national TV.

We posted previously about a popular singer who composed a song for Meredith.

In contrast, Amanda Knox is hardly even mentioned in Italy except in the context of court procedings and she seems to have almost no following at all except for the absurd Rocco Girlanda. You can bet that no sympathetic Italian movie will ever be made about AK and her jealous jubilant cruelty toward Meredith.

Stefano has posted a large number of photos of his movie making and his life on Facebook here.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 01/26/11 at 05:32 PM | #

Thanks to Stefano Torrese for continuing to honor the memory of Meredith Kercher and other victims like her.

Also thanks to Peter Quennell for True Justice For Meredith Kercher site where Meredith’s spirit lives on.

Posted by True North on 01/26/11 at 07:06 PM | #

I wish there were more people like Stefano. He is an example to all young men. Best of luck to him.

Posted by Janus on 01/26/11 at 11:55 PM | #

Thank you, Stefano!

Posted by Helder Licht on 01/27/11 at 01:23 PM | #

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