Giancarlo Giannini is an Oscar-nominated Italian actor, director and multilingual dubber who made an international reputation for his leading roles in Italian films as well as for his mastery of a variety of languages and dialects.
He was born August 1, 1942, in La Spezia, Italy. For ten years young Giannini lived and studied in Naples, earning his degree in electronics. At the age of 18 he enrolled in the Academy of Dramatic Art D’Amico in Rome, making his stage acting debut there. His credits included performances in contemporary Italian plays, as well, as in Italian productions of William Shakespeare’s plays “Romeo and Juliet” and “A Midsummer’s Night Dream”. In 1965 he made his debut on television starring as David Copperfield in the TV mini-series made by RAI, the Italian national TV company. He made his big-screen debut in Libido (1965), a Freudian psychological thriller. Since 1966 he has been in a successful collaboration with the legendary Italian director Lina Wertmüller, who made several award-winning films with Giannini as a male lead. He appears as peasant Tonino who prepares to assassinate dictator Benito Mussolini in Film d’amore e d’anarchia, ovvero ‘stamattina alle 10 in via dei Fiori nella nota casa di tolleranza…’ (1973), as a sailor in the irony-laden comedy Travolti da un insolito destino nell’azzurro mare d’agosto (1974) and as a survivor of a concentration camp in the Oscar-nominated Seven Beauties (1975). He also starred as a Jewish musician arrested by the Nazis in Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s masterpiece Lili Marleen (1981).
Giannini also made a reputation for dubbing international stars in films released on the Italian market, such as Jack Nicholson, Al Pacino, Michael Douglas, Dustin Hoffman, Gérard Depardieu and Ian McKellen, among others. He received a compliment from Stanley Kubrick for his dubbing of Nicholson in The Shining (1980). Giannini’s fluency in English and his mastery of dialects has brought him a number of supporting roles in Hollywood productions, such as A Walk in the Clouds (1995), Hannibal (2001), Darkness (2002) and Man on Fire (2004), among many others. He appears as Rene Mathis in the 21st James Bond film Casino Royale (2006), and reprises the role in the sequel, Quantum of Solace (2008).
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