My Name Is Nobody / Il mio nome è Nessuno (Tonino Valerii, Sergio Leone, 1973)


I actually thought he’d fallen asleep at some points :smile:

Safe to say he enjoyed doing the Da uomo a uomo commentary a lot more.

(Novecento) #282

Yeh that’s one of a few behind the scenes shots I used to build my case regarding how Leone’s role overlapped with that of Valerii at times.

(Stanton) #283

What was your conclusion about the director of MNIN?

(Unfortunately I haven’t read your article … sob …)

(Novecento) #284

Unfortunately I’m not allowed to share the whole article here. This was the concluding paragraph

In L’Abruzzo e il cinema, Leone notes with frustration that “I just wanted to be his consultant on the basis of the experience I had accumulated in cinema over many years” but that “only in editing did Tonino become more accepting”. Leone further refers to himself as “a producer of the old Hollywood style”; the implied creative responsibility is still reflected in the bestowal of the Academy Award for Best Picture to the producer rather than the director. This contrasts with the European practice, best epitomised by the Palme d’or at Cannes, where the honour is awarded to the director in accordance with the notion, introduced in Cahiers du cinéma in the 1950s, of the director as the “auteur” (author) of the film. It is fitting that a film shot in two parts across the United States and Europe, based on a thematic contrast between the American and Italian, or more broadly European, take on the Western, should have its ultimate accreditation similarly divided. Tonino Valerii was undoubtedly the director of this European (Italo-Franco-German) production, but Sergio Leone, in his classical American approach to production, was its auteur.

The article itself has supporting photos which complement the text nicely. The only downside is they did not let me proofread it before it went to print so it has several typos for non English words (I used Italian, Spanish and French sources) and had a couple of incorrect captions under the photos which were all written by someone else. In the next issue of Cinema Retro they then issued a correction regarding some of the major errors! Cinema Retro is in general a great read by the way, although I appreciate perhaps not as easy to get hold of outside of the UK and US where it is published.

(Stanton) #285

Generally Cinema Retro seems a bit too retro for my taste, but there are doubtless interesting issues for me amongst them. And yes, it is not that easy to find here.

In the case of MNIN I even think that Leone is the director, even if he did not sit in the director’s chair most of the time, but I assume he controlled the film so much that it is nearly completely his, and though different if he really had directed it completely himself (but more in concept than in matters of style). That his style dominates the film so much that Valerii gets invisible behind Leone’s power.


I’ve always compared this situation to the Howard Hawks/Christisn Nyby debate for The Thing From Another World. Hawks’ influence is all over it.

(Novecento) #287

Regarding the opening scene, this was a nice quote from Gastaldi in L’Âge d’or du cinéma de genre italien:

It was during the summer and Sergio had remained in Rome while Valerii was shooting the film in the USA. Then while I was on vacation, I received a surreal phone call from Sergio: “I’ve just had Tonino on the phone. He’s telling me that he can’t film the scene at the barber’s because the barber is never stationary enough for us to keep the barrel of a gun in his crotch!”

(Stanton) #288

Yes, it’s very hawksian.

There are other examples, like Poltergeist and some other Spielberg productions in the 80s.


Belgian comics artist Joseph Gillain (Jijé) with Leone and Hill on the set of Il mio nome è Nessuno in 1973. At that time, Jijé was working on a comic book adaptation of Valerii and Leone’s farewell Western, but the latter reportedly pulled the plug on that project (some of Jijé’s finished pages and [preparatory] drawings are on view on Conversely, Leone had shown interest in adapting Jijé’s long-running Western comic book series Jerry Spring for the big screen (source: Tanguy et Laverdure, intégrale 8).

The Specialists / Gli specialisti (Sergio Corbucci, 1969)
(Gordon Quid) #290

GetTV and Sony Movie Channel is often airing this, AWESOME FILM !

(MMcG) #291

I dug up an old photo (pre digital camera) taken in Acoma Pueblo during an “old west” holiday in New Mexico in 1997.

See the same location from the movie:

and here is the village from a distance: