They told him to move. That he left the house, did something, some sport. But Niccolò Ammaniti He had not set foot in a gym in his life. Not much less did he want to go running. If it were for him, he admits this month during a visit to Madrid, nor would he take his dogs for a walk. So he found an alternative: to shoot a series. "I have lost five kilos, I feel very well", he laughs. There are also, of course, creative reasons after the debut on television of one of the best-known writers in Italy: "It was a story with a long journey, with many characters, it would not be worth the cinema. And then there was the initial image, beautiful, that literature could not tell in all its colors ".
Why The miracle -Their eight chapters are on Sky from January 22- starts with the police break in the lair of a mobster. The agents find the capo drenched in blood, as well as the floor of the room. An adjustment of accounts? No. The person in charge is the virgin. Specifically, a statuette of the madonna that does not stop crying plasma. The chemical analyzes clear the doubts: there is no trick, no joke. The tears of the virgin are real and flow endless, nine liters an hour. Not only: it is human blood.
"What reactions would there be to something like that?" Was the first question that Ammaniti raised. In the series, the alleged miracle shakes Italy and the lives of the protagonists, from the prime minister to a young scientist. Politics, religion and mafia are mixed in a plot that fuses faith and mystery, the highest spirit and the darkest desire and earthy "It was about forcing the characters to confront something that placed them alone before the meaning of existence," the writer adds.
From the pen to the camera, the Ammaniti style has not changed. And, in Italy, his address has won the applause that they tend to elevate their literature. The author of I will take you with me or As God commands portrays human misery and weakness without mercy, but with delicacy. Your universe is populated with defeated creatures, although never condemned. They try, they almost never win, and they end up surrendering to the lower instincts; so pathetic and tender types. That is, humans. Ammaniti narrates, ironizes, caresses and slaps. But do not judge. And, often, it gives hope to some young personage. The shadow fills his works, but the light never goes out. "As I grow older I seek to approach the intimacy of my protagonists. Before he used them more as puppets, and he destroyed them. Although, in the end, I just massacre them equally, "he smiles.
Very different, on the other hand, has been the creative process. Accustomed to the loneliness of the writer, to stop or continue as and when he wanted, Ammaniti has discovered the set, the teamwork, his joys and his traumas. "You do not have time for anything else. Sales, you go home, you die, and you start over. I no longer had friends, nor did I answer my cell phone. I hardly visited my parents, once a week. I could not read, watch movies. At the same time, you meet people with whom you share a dream, and you are in the center of a group, you feel protected, "he says. From the experience he has learned more lessons. He learned to get angry, to say what he thinks, to let go It is not and assume that sensitivities are hurt. And he even gave himself a surprise: "All this forces you to move a lot. I have seen Rome again after centuries, it was wonderful. And I've realized that I'm not terribly lazy as I thought. " So much that now he has taken pleasure. He says he will shoot another series. The gym can wait.
Ammaniti remembers when his grandmother took him to see the virgin of Civitavecchia. In February 1995, in that town near Rome, the word spread that a religious statue wept blood. Hundreds of curious and pilgrims came, while the story ended in all newspapers and televisions. "Then it turned out that it was chicken blood," Ammaniti told Il Corriere della Sera
The comment provoked the angry reaction of several Catholic newspapers, which accused the director of not knowing the facts. Even more, the Gregori family, owner of the statuette in those years, which has sued the writer for "defamation", was irritated. Fabio Gregori regrets that even then his family suffered accusations, including judicial, for an alleged fraud and that, however, it was demonstrated without a doubt that the blood found on the statue was human.