(AFP) Sep 9, 2009
VENICE, Italy Sparks flew at the Venice film festival Wednesday
when Italian director Michele Placido was asked why conservative
Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's media group had produced his film
on the 1968 anti-war movement.
"I don't know who Berlusconi is, and I don't vote for him, I vote for
the other side entirely," he said at the start of a news conference
on his film "Il Grande Sogno" (The Great Dream), produced by Mediaset.
Then, mistakenly thinking his Spanish questioner was American,
Placido's voice rose to a shout: "You invade other countries, send
people to die and then make films on it to say how good you are" --
in an apparent reference to Grant Heslov's dark comedy "The Men Who
Stare at Goats," set in Iraq.
"Get out of that country," Placido said.
Placido's autobiographical film recalls his "conversion" from police
officer to anti-war activist in the late 1960s.