Cinecittà is Italy’s largest and most famous film studio. Initially, it was so successful that it acquired the nickname “Hollywood on the Tiber”. During the course of its history, over 50 of the movies produced in Cinecittà have won Oscars. The studios are located at the edge of Rome, but there is a metro stop right in front of the building.
The address of the Cinecittà Studio is Via Tuscolana, 1055. Phone: +39 06 722861. (metro: Cinecittà). The studios can only be visited with a guide. The entrance fee is €20 (discount: €15) and includes the Cinecittà so Mostra exhibition. Booking is mandatory. (Note that prices and times may be subject to change.)
History and description
Originally, Cinecittà was built to make propaganda films there. This was in 1937, when fascist dictator Benito Mussolini was in power.
Its greatest successes came in the 1950s, when it became very popular among American directors to come and shoot there, mainly because of its low production costs.
Among others, the classic film “Ben Hur” was filmed at Cinecittà and late Italy’s most famous director Federico Fellini shot most of his films there.
In the 1980s, the studio was privatized, but despite sometimes shooting big productions (“Gangs of New York” and “Passion of the Christ” were filmed there, among others), it never managed to recapture the allure of the 50s and 60s.
The Italian version of “Big Brother”, Grande Fratello, was also filmed in a specially built house on the Cinecittà site.
Cinecittà’s biggest problem these days is that it is no longer cheap. In times of crisis, filmmakers also have to watch their pennies and nowadays cities like Budapest and Bucharest are sometimes 25% cheaper than Rome. Even Italian directors themselves spent most of their budgets outside Italy in 2010.
To stop this trend, the owners have invested heavily, most notably in the creation of an amusement park, called Cinecittà World.
In total, over 3,000 movies have been made in Cinecittà.