Monday, May 4, 2015

Il Monello - July 1975 - Interview

Although I have seen this represented as an insert to Il Monello from 1974, I believe that it is from July 1975 (the pages that I have show no dates).  If I find in the future that I am mistaken, I will correct this post accordingly.  Since including this information in the Year in Review post for 1975 would make it extremely long, I decided to make a separate post for this interesting interview with Catherine.

The front cover of the insert is on the right, and the back cover is on the left.

The captions for the above pictures (as best as I can translate):

[left page, top left] Catherine Spaak (pictured with her sister Agnes, father and mother), was born in Paris on 3 April 1945 and began her artistic activity in France, where she made her debut very young, so much so that she was called a child prodigy.

[left page, bottom left] In this photo, along with Catherine, is Claudia Cardinale in the film Certo certissimo, anzi...probabile. Spaak has found her place in the Italian comedies in which she is especially artistic and brilliant, but her background is a little "bitter."
[left page, bottom right] Here is a nice picture from La notte e fatta per...rubare.  Undoubtedly Catherine has always sported (even in times when censorship was tough) a sexy image.

[left page, top right] However, it was here in Italy that Catherine gained international notoriety, thanks to films like La voglia matta, in which she played alongside Ugo TognazziUndoubtedly she was one of our most admired actresses of the 60s.

[right page] Spaak has always alternated her activities more as an actress than a singerNow, however, and for some time before returning to the set, she is content to interpret songs alongside her husband, Johnny Dorelli.

The caption for the above pictures (as best as I can translate):

"naturally" yours... No, don't think evil thoughts: that of course means "following her nature." And indeed, what else could we think when seeing these photos that show Spaak in nature, while stroking animals (which she likes very much)? If anyone has other thoughts, we ask that they keep them to themselves!

The caption for the above pictures (as best as I can translate):

[left page, top right] In the family tree of Spaak is a Belgian Prime Minister (father's brother) and also a painter.  Catherine also, occasionally, is delighted with this hobby.  As our photo shows, she prefers abstract painting. [Note from me:  Since this appears to be a photo from Una ragazza piuttosto complicata, I'm not sure how much it really shows us about her painting hobby.]

[left page, bottom left and bottom center] In these two photos you see Catherine as she performs (the fall was not staged) during a charity evening this year for the circus Moira Orfei.  However, despite the slip, Spaak skated well.

[left page, bottom right] Another hobby of beautiful Catherine is sports and skiing.  Apparently, Dorelli does not ski as well and can never manage to keep up with her.

[right page, top right] With an orchestra behind her playing prestigious music while she recites the words of the story of Peter and the Wolf.  It was a big success for Spaak, and something different.

[right page, bottom three pictures] In these three photos we have tried to summarize the love life of Catherine, which has been quite eventfulFabrizio Capucci whom she married and had a daughter by him, SabrinaOnce her marriage to Fabrizio was canceled by the Sacred Rota, she tied the knot with Johnny Dorelli, with whom she has a son, Gabriel.

Below is a translation of the interview, keeping in mind that it is the best that I can do from a machine translation:

Catherine Spaak, the former scandalous girl, the unscrupulous nymphet of La voglia matta, is today a serene woman, a mother, and wife. She can look back on it all now, without the aggressiveness and the distrust that she had a few years ago.

Her life was a series of events, experiences from which she had to learn.  At the age of fifteen years, she was a symbol of rebellion and nonconformity, when the great youth protest took its first steps.  She was still a minor when she married young and gave birth to a daughter, Sabrina (who is now 12 years old).  Since then, there has been the separation from her husband Fabrizio Capucci, the birth of baby Gabriel (4 years), and her marriage to Johnny Dorelli, all combined with her experience in film, television, and musical theater.
"Luckily my husband's play, the comedy 'Aggiungi un posto a tavola,' with which he has been busy until recently in Rome, allowed me to take care of the house, the family, and my hobbies, since I did not have to follow him throughout Italy."

Once the play was ready for the road, Catherine and Johnny were granted a short break before the tour of the play in the rest of Italy.

"I thought I would take advantage of this holiday to schedule work projects, to consider the different offers that I received, but I ended up only worrying about rest and enjoying this wonderful summer. There is always time for work."

Catherine, meanwhile, has been a regular guest of the radio show "Gran varieta," where she participates in her amusing manner.

Catherine, years ago you played in the controversial film La noia [The Boredom], do you ever get bored?

Thank goodness, no!  Boredom is an inevitable consequence of dissatisfaction, and today I feel like a complete womanAt home, I am always busy with somethingI always find something to do. Something that I like, that I'm passionate aboutI love readingSometimes I do it to look for new ideas for the plays of Giorgio (real name Johnny Dorelli, ed.), to find ideas, or simply because reading relaxes and always interests mePart of my time is also spent playing guitar, singing, and composing songsMusic has always been part of my life, and I just cannot help it. I also have a passion for painting.

Have you ever thought of having a show of the works of Catherine Spaak?

For heaven's sake! They are my things, paintings that I do for my own pleasure, not to subject them to the attention of the public and the judgment of critics. That would be serious.

Tell me about the actress Catherine Spaak.

 Oh God, what can I say? At ten years old I had already decided to do this jobI could not think of other professionsI was attracted to the idea of being able to create characters that are always different, to be able to give to others and myself new emotions continuouslyI have shot many movies, and I can say I played many different roles. Today, in the choice of a script, I am much more reflectiveI'd rather give up a part, if it does not really interest me.
And the theater?

I faced the theater to thirst for new experiencesAnd it was beautiful.  Plus I had the good fortune to work alongside wonderful people like Johnny Dorelli ... The theater period was for a whileI closed it, but, in the future, I would not mind re-opening it. We will see.

Johnny Dorelli: what have you found in him?

Let's see ... intelligence, sensitivity, balance, enthusiasm, sense of humor, unpredictability, sympathy ... I think that's enough, right?

It may be enough, I think. How did he win you? What tactics did he use?

Well, he made a show of intelligence, sensitivity, balance, enthusiasm, sense of humor ... But maybe I'm repeating myself, right?

What did you do to attract him?

I hated him at first glance!  I shot him down.  He seemed to me a guy too sure of himself, and too witty.  Unbearable, in fact.  During the TV recordings of La vedova allegra (Catherine played the widow beside Dorelli, after the flat-rate Mina, ed), after meeting with Johnny, I looked upon him as torture.  Then, suddenly, I changed my mind.  I began to realize that I spent the days looking forward to going to work.  I found myself always cheerful, ready to joke, to laugh.  And it was a feeling that I had forgotten for quite a while.  Hate for his type began to transform to a little light of love.

Let's go back to the movies. What, in your opinion, is your best film?

By choosing a particular film, I would probably offend someone.  I have always been fond of the roles I've played.  Each movie was a new adventure, an exciting experience, beyond the success or failure of the film.

Is there a partner, an ideal actor with whom you would like to make a film?
One existed.  As a child, I identified with my Prince Charming, expecting him to come and kidnap me on a magnificent white horse.  It was Gerard Philipe.  I consider him one of the most fascinating actors of all time.  Perhaps, with a partner like that, I would not quibble too much about choosing a movie.  I would accept it just to be that little girl at his side.

At the time of La voglia matta, Catherine Spaak was considered a well-off girl, spoiled, capricious, ruthless, and a little snob.  What happened to that girl?

Honestly, I never thought of myself that way!  I arrived in Italy, from Paris, without knowing a word of Italian, without knowing in the least the mentality of this country.  Unlike girls in Italy at the time, I believed in an independent life, a fairly realistic conception of life for a fifteen year old, because of the type of education received from my family.  When I decided to come to Italy, I did it just to prove to myself that I could stand on my own feet and get away from a challenging family life.  In Paris, I had important friendships that could easily have help me in the business.  My father was a well-known screenwriter, and also there was my uncle, the Prime Minister of Belgium.  With all of those cards in hand,  I could have quietly gotten what I wanted.  I preferred, instead, to challenge myself and start from scratch, no pushing, no assistance.  Using that air of disenchantment, I began to get the roles of mischievous, rebellious girls.  When you get stuck with a label, you know, it is hard to get rid of it.

Your character, however, excuse me, but it was not all milk and honey.
This is true.  Life had taught me to be always on the alert, to never trust anything or anyoneMy marriage was wrong, there were the events that followed, the gossip and the nastiness of some people. That contributed a lot toward hardening my character.
Do you see yourself as nice or unpleasant?

It depends on the circumstancesSometimes, I find things fun, enjoyable, even hilariousOther times, I find it hard to break the ice and unconsciously build a little barrier around myself.  Here, in any case, niceness or nastiness is always exaggerated. 

How do you feel about your appearance?

Alas, even with that it depends on the moodSome days I don't like it, when there is no make-up or a dress that doesn't fit.  I feel horrible.  Generally, however, I feel OK, passable.

Do you always tell the truth?

Yes, when possible, but I try to avoid unpleasant truths, those that can do harm.

What are the things that you deem essential to your happiness?

The phones and planes! To be able to talk to my husband and join him when he is away!

Let's talk about Catherine Spaak in the role of mother.

That's my favorite part, the character that I most care aboutGabriele is four years old, a beautiful age, where he can begin his first serious dialogue, the first crazy questions, because of growing a lot. It's an age where parents play an important role in the child's education, the formation of his character, his futureSabrina is twelve years old.   She already has her own well-defined personality. Sometimes I realize that I treat her like a child, without thinking that she has grown more mature and has her own way of thinking.

How are you with jealousy?

Very well, thank you. I find it hard to be jealous, because I have Giorgio constantly under control! Seriously, with our kind of work, to be jealous would be a contradiction.

What kind of husband is Johnny Dorelli?
He is very open and gives me an advantage:  He does not consider the wife as his maid or an ornament of the houseWe always evaluate every decision together.  We advise each other and don't impose our will.  We have a fifty-fifty partnershipThey are the most healthy and less ambiguous, don't you think?

What do you miss, Catherine?

I still cannot fully comprehend being a serene woman, completely satisfied.

Do you believe in happiness?

I prefer to believe in love, esteem, feelings, in serenity.  Those sensations are more concrete and lasting.  Trying to be happy, in the long run, can lead to terribly confused ideas.


  1. Como adquirir o filme - LA NOTTE FAR FETTA PER RUBARE 1967?

  2. Other than finding an old VHS tape of it, I don't have any easy suggestions. I can only suggest searching around the internet a bit. You may be able to find someone that is selling it or is willing to share it.