11 April 2015

Scampolo (1958)

Romy Schneider (1938-1982) was one of the most beautiful and intelligent actors of her generation. After the enormously successful Sissi trilogy she soon became nauseated by the saccharine ‘nice girl’ image. At the end of the 1950s, Romy appeared in a bit less stereotypical films such as the sunny comedy Scampolo (1958).

Romy Schneider
Dutch postcard by Gebr. Spanjersberg N.V., Rotterdam, no. 3651. Photo: Ufa, Berlin. Publicity still for Scampolo (1958).

Romy Schneider
Dutch postcard by Gebr. Spanjersberg, no. 1014, mailed in 1958. Photo: Universum-Film Aktiengesellschaft (UFA), Berlin-Tempelhof.

Romy Schneider
Dutch postcard by Gebr. Spanjersberg N.V., Rotterdam, no. 1040/858. Photo: Universum-Film Aktiengesellschaft (UFA), Berlin-Tempelhof.


In the German production Scampolo (Alfred Weidenmann, 1958), Romy starred as a young, poor orphan who lives on the Italian island Ischia. Scampolo works as a tourist guide and for a laundress (Elisabeth Flickenschildt). She falls in love with a handsome but poor architect (Paul Hubschmid) who hopes to win a design competition. Scampolo intercedes on his behalf with the minister (Viktor de Kowa) and helps him to make his dream come true.

Scampolo (translation: remnant) was loosely based on a play by Dario Niccodemi. It was not the first film adaptation. In 1917 there was already an Italian silent film directed by Giuseppe Sterni with Margot Pellegrinetti as Scampolo.

Silent film diva Carmen Boni played her also in a 1928 Italian production directed by Augusto Genina. This version has been recently rediscovered and restored by the Bologna cinematheque.

Four years later Hans Steinhoff made a sound version in Germany starring Dolly Haas, Scampolo, ein Kind der Straße/Scampolo a Child of the Streets (1932). This time Scampolo has nowhere to live in Berlin, and must sleep rough. Steinhoff also directed a French language version, Un peu d'amour/A Bit of Love (1932), starring Madeleine Ozeray.

In 1941 followed another Italian version, Scampolo (Nunzio Malasomma, 1941) with Lilia Silvi and in 1953 yet a new Italian adaptation Scampolo 53 (Girogio Bianchi, 1953) starring Maria Fiori. The 1958 version with Romy Schneider was the last film adaptation, till now.

Romy Schneider, Viktor de Kowa
Romy Schneider and Viktor de Kowa. Dutch postcard by Gebr. Spanjersberg N.V., Rotterdam, no. 1108. Photo: UFA (Universum-Film Aktien-gesellschaft, Berlin-Tempelhof). Still from Scampolo (1958).

Romy Schneider, Paul Hubschmid
Romy Schneider and Paul Hubschmid. Dutch postcard by Gebr. Spanjersberg N.V., Rotterdam, no. 1118. Photo: UFA (Universum-Film Aktien-gesellschaft, Berlin-Tempelhof). Publicity still for Scampolo (Alfred Weidenmann, 1958).

Talented at multiple levels

Scampolo was only the second film young idol Romy Schneider made after the hugely popular Sissi trilogy.

The cast included well-known actors as Paul Hubschmid, Georg Thomalla, Eva Maria Meineke, Franca Parisi, Elisabeth Flickenschildt, Willy Millowitsch, Walter Rilla and Viktor de Kowa, but Schneider was the heart of the film.

Marcin Kukuczka at IMDb: "Romy Schneider is great! The fact that Scampolo was filmed just after the third part of Sissi is too significant not to be skipped. Romy was considered to fit best to 'royal roles' by a number of people. Partly, thanks to Scampolo, she proved that she was talented at multiple levels."

The comedy was shot on Ischia Island in Italy with wonderful cinematography by Bruno Mondi, who had also shot the Sissi films. Mondi had already started in the silent era as a camera assistant for Fritz Lang's Der Müde Tod (1921). During World War II, he worked with director Veit Harlan on the anti-Semitic propaganda film Jud Süß (1940). After the war, Mondi went on working at films without any problems and shot socialist-style re-education films in the Soviet zone like Wozzeck (Georg C. Klaren, 1947) and Rotation (Wolfgang Staudte, 1949).

StateofThings at IMDb: "Bruno Mondi is a luminous example for a brilliant and inventive cameraman and a frightening example for a perfect technician, not asking for the aim of his work."

Franca Parisi
Franca Parisi. Dutch postcard by Gebr. Spanjersberg, Rotterdam (Dutch licency holder for Universum-Film Aktien-gesellschaft, Berlin-Tempelhof), no. 1086. Photo: Ufa/Film-Foto. Publicity still for Scampolo (Alfred Weidenmann, 1958).

Elisabeth Flickenschildt, Romy Schneider in Scampolo
Elisabeth Flickenschildt and Romy Schneider. Dutch postcard by Gebr. Spanjersberg N.V., Rotterdam. Photo: Ufa/Film-Foto for Scampolo (Alfred Weidenmann, 1958).

Paul Hubschmidt, Georg Thomalla, Romy Schneider in Scampolo
Paul Hubschmidt, Georg Thomalla and  Romy Schneider. Dutch Postcard by Gebr. Spanjersberg N.V., Rotterdam. Photo: Ufa/Film-Foto for Scampolo (Alfred Weidenmann, 1958).

Source: James Travers (French Film Site), Filmreference.com, Wikipedia (English and German) and IMDb.


Terry said...

Howdy Bob
This is a great post ,I'll be back again for the next installment :)
Have a super weekend.
Until next time
Happy Trails

Linda said...

Wonderful, she has always intrigued! And I love your new header photo. Sizzling!

Bob of Holland said...

Thanks, girls. The header is again a postcard with Bardot and Delon. I couldn't find a better one.