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American actor and director John Turturro has made his personal tribute to the music, history and people of Naples, Italy. His musical documentary "Passione", has received international acclaims.
Coming from a musical background, Turturro traveled to Naples to feature professional singers and everyday residents of the city. The actor-turned-director set out to show the grittier side of the city and its people as they endured the hardships of poverty and war.
John Turturro, director of "Passione", said, "It reminded me of New York in the 70s. It was very gritty and it's kind of dangerous and dirty but there's something really alive and sexy about the city."
The musical documentary features 23 songs from Naples that range from around 1300 to the present day. Over the centuries, the music has been influenced by many of the city's invaders including Greeks, Arabs, French, Spanish, Normans and Americans. Turturro says music about love, sex, jealousy and social protest all make up the colorful history of the people of Naples.
John Turturro said, "People think about soul music, the music that came out of slavery. These people were oppressed for long periods of time, for long time, and so they find ways, subterranean ways with organizations, musical ways to express themselves."
The film first premiered in Italy at the 2010 Venice Film Festival and opened in limited release in the U.S. in June.