26 December 2016

Kim Rossi Stuart

Hunky Italian actor Kim Rossi Stuart (1969) started as a teen idol in B-films and TV movies. He turned his career in a more serious direction with arthouse hits like Michelangelo Antonioni’s Al di là delle nuvole and Romanzo Criminale/Crime Novel (2005). He also became a notable film director himself.

Kim Rossi Stuart
Italian postcard by World Collection, no. P.c. 466. Photo: A. Servello / G. Neri.

Karate Warrior

Kim Rossi Stuart was born in Rome in 1969 and named after the Rudyard Kipling novel Kim. His father, Giacomo Rossi Stuart, is an actor of Italian and Scottish descent. Kim's mother, Klara Müller, is a former top model of German and Dutch descent. Kim has three sisters, two of them actresses: Loretta Rossi Stuart and Valentina Rossi Stuart, the latter also stunt-woman. Ombretta is his third sister.

Kim began acting at the age of 5 with his father Giacomo in the film drama Fatti di gente perbene/The Murri Affair (Mauro Bolognini, 1974), starring Catherine Deneuve.

In 1983, the 14-years-old left his parents' home and also left school to further his career as an actor. He studied theatre and in 1986 he began to act regularly for TV and film. He played a novice in Der Name der Rose/The Name of the Rose (Jean-Jacques Annaud, 1986), the film version of Umberto Eco’s bestseller.

He became popular with his lead in the martial arts film Il ragazzo dal kimono d'oro/Karate Warrior (Fabrizio De Angelis, 1987) and its sequels. Seymour Asses at IMDb: “It's a poorly made 'young guy learns karate from old Asian master in order fight his arch nemesis over a girl' type movie. The plot is lifted from The Karate Kid 2, but Karate Warrior expands on this by adding magic to the mix. Really, really stupid magic.”

More interesting was the dark and funny comedy Lo zio indegno/The Sleazy Uncle (Franco Brusati, 1989), starring Vittorio Gassman. Rossi-Stuart was again a smash among young Italian audiences as a dashing prince in the TV movie Fantaghirò/Cave of the Golden Rose (Lamberto Bava, 1991) with Alessandra Martines as the title character. The success lead again to several sequels.

Teen idol Rossi Stuart now began to focus on quality films, like Senza pelle/No Skin (Alessandro D'Alatri, 1994), where his role, a man with psychological problems, was appreciated by the critics. A popular film was the crime-drama Poliziotti/Policemen (Giulio Base, 1995), with Claudio Amendola and Michele Placido. Then he acted for legendary director Michelangelo Antonioni in Al di là delle nuvole/Beyond the Clouds (Michelangelo Antonioni, Wim Wenders, 1995).

Kim Rossi Stuart
Italian postcard by World Collection, no. P.c. 472. Photo: A. Servello / G. Neri.

Kim Rossi Stuart
Italian postcard by TV Stelle in the Star Collection, no. 7. Design: C. Rea.

Angel of Evil

In the mid 1990s, Kim Rossi Stuart returned to the theatre to play in William Shakespeare’s Re Lear (King Lear), directed by Luca Ronconi, and he acted with Turi Ferro in Il visitatore (The Visitor) written by Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt and directed by Antonio Calenda.

On TV, he played Julien Sorel in the French-series Le Rouge et le Noir/The Red and the Black (Jean-Daniel Verhaeghe, 1997), based upon the famous novel by Stendhal.

In 2002 he participated in the film Pinocchio (Roberto Benigni, 2002) as Lucignolo. Then, he played in Le Chiavi di Casa/The Keys to the House (Gianni Amelio, 2004), as a young father who attempts to forge a relationship with his teenage, handicapped son after he meets him for the first time. The film and his performance won several awards.

Later he played Mimmo in the TV-film Il tunnel della libertà/The tunnel of the Freedom (Enzo Monteleone, 2004) and he had one of the leading-roles in Michele Placido's Romanzo Criminale/Kings of Crime (Michele Placido, 2005). This film was also highly acclaimed and won 15 awards.

Rossi Stuart wrote the screenplay, directed and acted in the film Anche libero va bene/Along the Ridge (Kim Rossi Stuart, 2006). It was followed by a lead role in Piano, solo (Riccardo Milani, 2007), a film based on the life of Italian jazz great Luca Flores, with Rossi Stuart playing Flores. He then starred in the comedy-drama Questione Di Cuore/A Question of the Heart (Francesca Archibugi, 2009).

Then followed Vallanzasca - Gli Angeli Del Male/Angel of Evil (Michele Placido, 2011), based on the life of Renato Vallanzasca, a famous 1970s Italian bank robber. Wallys Chamber at IMDb: “Kim Rossi Stuart has a lot of charm, mixed with a crazy brutality and a great face to slap on the front of a newspaper. There's a fantastic scene where Vallanzasca dresses as a business man and just strolls straight through into the bank's back room to help himself and it's only with this charm that he manages to go through with it.”

In the French romantic comedy L'ex de ma vie (Dorothée Sebbagh, 2014) he appeared as the Italian ex Nino of Géraldine Nakache. And he directed himself in the comedy-drama Tommaso (Kim Rossi Stuart, 2016).

Kim Rossi Stuart was in a relationship with the actresses Veronica Logan and and Simona Cavallari. He speaks English, French and Italian, is an accomplished swimmer and also plays the trumpet. He has a son Ettore (2011) with his girlfriend Ilaria Spada.

Trailer Romanzo Criminale/Kings of Crime (Michele Placido, 2005). Source: neondreams 25 (YouTube).

Italian trailer for Vallanzasca - Gli Angeli Del Male/Angel of Evil (Michele Placido, 2011). Source: 20th Century Fox Italia (YouTube).

Italian trailer for Tommaso (Kim Rossi Stuart, 2016). Source: 01Distribution (YouTube).

Sources: Dante Balzano (IMDb), Wikipedia and IMDb.

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