Goffredo Bettini, national executive of the Democratic Party, commented on the letter that Antonio Monda, former artistic director of the Rome Film Fest, sent to Repubblica, in very bright tones: “Antonio Monda’s letter today in Repubblica, about his story with the Rome Film Fest, it is very serious. I do not enter into the merits of his opinions, rather I have a duty to deny the lies regarding my conduct and my role. Monda does not name me directly, but from the text it is unequivocal that it refers to myself ”.
“1) I would have put a political veto – writes Bettini – on his reconfirmation after 7 years for family interests, as my sister Fabia directs” Alice nella città “, an independent review aimed at girls and boys who has an agreement with the Festa del Cinema from the first edition “.
“Not only” says Bettini, “I have not vetoed, but no politician, administrator, journalist, director, producer (I could go on) can claim to have suffered even a minimal or indirect interference on my part to influence the choice. I have kept total confidentiality. The decisions were taken in full freedom by the shareholders and in the first place by the Mayor Gualtieri. That I would like to publicly confirm what I am saying. The Board of the Cinema Foundation for Rome unanimously decided not to confirm the artistic director, for a (I believe) even physiological fact and to call two highly prestigious personalities such as Gian Luca Farinelli and Paola Malanga to open a new phase in the life of the ‘event”.
“2) Monda – continues Bettini – speaks of a generic political pressure also from the local Democratic Party, completely invented. The very broad political pressures, improper, heterogeneous, broken up, completely unrelated to the merits of the “cinema” argument, started in defense of Monda. Accompanied by a press campaign, by some newspapers, disproportionate, frankly, to the relevance of the issue. Relationships in Italy count more than merit and worldliness (sic!) Pays off ”.
3) The letter denigrates the first editions of the Festival, after having founded it, directed by me with total lack of style. Regarding the size of the budget, I remember that at the time it was composed largely of private sponsors, now reduced to a pittance. On Monda’s painful claim that he was the first to have brought international stars to Rome, I remember who was present in the 2006-2007 and 2008 editions. For the spirit of truth I list them all: in 2006 Dario fo, Richard Gere, Luc Besson, Giuseppe Tornatore, Martin Scorsese, Ksenia Rappaport, Harrison Ford, Leonardo di Caprio, Mira Nair, Nicole Kidman, Robert de Niro, Robert Guediguian, Sean Connery, Vera Farmiga. In 2007: Ang Lee, Bruno Ganz, Alexandra Maria Lara, Ellen Page, Monica Bellucci, Colin Firth, Emile Hirsch, Francis Ford Coppola, Geoffret Rush, Gerard Depardieu, Halle Berry, Jonathan Rhys Meyer, Julie Taymor, Julio Medem, Kabir Bedi , Peter Bogdanovich, Reese Whiterspoon, Sean Penn, Sofia Coppola, Sofia Loren, Terrence Malik, Tim Roth, Tom Cruise, Dario Fo. In 2008: Al Pacino, Cassel Vincent, Carlo Verdone, Matthew Modine, Viggo Mortensen, David Cronemberg, Colin Farrel, Ed Harris, Ellen Burstyn, Francois Dupeyron, Gael Garcia Bernal, Gaspar Noe, Jane Campion, Jean Pierre Bacri, Jessica Biel, Michael Cimino, Nathalie Baye, Peter Greenaway, Robert Pattinson “.
“There is a further difference, however. All the great artists we hosted in the first editions accompanied their films presented in Rome in world and international premieres. This is not the case today. Films without a cast and seen at other festivals have often been presented ”.
“I was pulled by the hair in this controversy; artfully built in an unscrupulous way. But it is necessary to re-establish the truth when the mark is crossed. And the climate created has exceeded the mark. It will be my lawyers who will assess if there are the grounds for a criminal and civil lawsuit regarding the reference to my personal or family interest in this matter “.
“The State Police are doing an excellent way to trace the links and the material authors of a dirty story that involved my family: in fact, two anonymous letters to my sister arrived in the previous months. Among the many threats contained in these letters – concludes Bettini – the writer thinks he is offending with the epithet “dirty communist”. Of course, since my sister is not involved in politics, he is to blame for having a brother who was a leader of the PCI. Being an Italian Communist for me is a source of pride, an honor, the proof of a rigorous, sober and upright personal training. Dirty were not the Italian Communists but those who, today as then, are hiding to strike behind anonymity and informing “.