Marie-José, last queen of Italy, subject of new film and television projects – Deadline

EXCLUSIVE: The Italian Royal House of Savoy receives film and television treatment from Chinese director, writer and producer Yi Zhou, who is developing both a television series and a feature film based on Queen Marie-José.

“The Queen of May”, who reigned only 35 days, led a remarkable life. She was known as a radical royal who helped attempt to overthrow Italian fascist leader Mussolini and pleaded with Hitler to help the Belgian people. She lived in exile for years and died in 2001 at the age of 94.

Filmmaker Zhou was born in China but raised in Italy. She will produce the television series and participate through her Rome-based production banner Into the Sun Films, a division of Los Angeles-based parent company Into the Sun Entertainment.

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The TV series is produced in collaboration with Prince Emanuele Filiberto di Savoia, Prince of Venice, who is an executive producer. The prince is the grandson of Queen Marie-José.

Zhou writes the television series and the script for the film. She also plans to direct the feature film. The plan is to shoot the series in the fall of 2022 and the film in 2023, both in Italy and in the United States.

The Royal House of Savoy television series will portray the beginnings of Marie-José, the young maverick princess as she grows up to be an independent woman, then dutifully fulfills her destiny of marriage to a handsome prince.

Zhou said, “The story of Queen Marie-José is a radical epic, and within each layer are dramatic twists and turns, many of which have significant historical significance and ramifications. This is certainly a case where real life trumps fiction and it is for these reasons that I am compelled to bring this compelling story to life both in a TV series and in a movie, as a narration. complementary. The Royal Dynasties spark a real intrigue that audiences the world over are very receptive to, and we are confident that the stories we tell about the Queen of May will satisfy many appetites and, more importantly, entertain.

Prince Emanuele Filiberto di Savoia said: “Yi is an extraordinary storyteller who I know will bring my grandmother’s story to life. We look forward to creating an unforgettable experience for audiences around the world. “

Zhou is currently in Rome preparing for her directorial debut Stars and scars. Zhou wrote and produced the film, which is an English-language sci-fi drama inspired by the memory phenomenon known as Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory (HSAM).

Zhou has worked on installations and short films that have been shown at the exhibitions of the Shanghai and Venice Biennials and at the Sundance and Cannes festivals. His first short film My heart laid bare, screened in Venice in 2009, starred Charlotte Gainsbourg. For her multimedia installations, she has collaborated with Ennio Morricone and Pharrell Williams. In 2011, she moved from Europe to China where she became a fashion influencer and artistic director for the big video-sharing site Tudou. She moved to Los Angeles in 2018 and this year is launching Into the Sun Entertainment in Los Angeles and Into the Sun Films in Italy.

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