Did you happen to record Monty Python’s Flying Circus
when it was shown on PBS back in the 1970s?
Do you still have the tapes?
Is there a TIME LIFE logo at the end?
If so, please write to me. Thank you!

Click here to learn the story.

THE
WORKS
OF
TINTO
BRASS

IN MARCH 2002 I CONTACTED ALL THE COPYRIGHT HOLDERS I COULD LOCATE IN ORDER TO OBTAIN PERMISSIONS. IF YOU OWN THE RIGHTS TO ANY IMAGES OR QUOTES ON THIS WEB SITE PLEASE CONTACT ME. THANK YOU.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

APPRENTICESHIP

Chagall
dir: Henri Langlois
1952–1962
Spatiodynamisme
1958
L’India vista da Rossellini
India Seen by Rossellini
10-part TV miniseries
dir: Roberto Rossellini
1958
and
India matri bhumi
India, Mother Earth
dir: Roberto Rossellini
1958
Les noces vénitiennes
Venetian Honeymoon
dir: Alberto Cavalcanti
1958
Il Generale della Rovere
dir: Roberto Rossellini
1959
L’Italia non è un Paese povero
Italy Is Not a Poor Country
3-part TV series
dir: Joris Ivens
1959–1960

WINNING ACCOLADES

Ça ira, il fiume della rivolta
Thermidor a.k.a. Tell It Like It Is
1962
Chi lavora è perduto — in capo al mondo
Whoever Works Is Lost — To the Ends of the Earth
1963
La donna è una cosa meravigliosa
Woman Is a Wonderful Thing
dir: Mauro Bolognini, with Tinto Brass as actor
1964
Imago
1964
Unproduced film
Il tempo lavorativo
Work Time
1964
Il tempo libero
Leisure Time
1964

MAINSTREAM

Il disco volante
The Flying Saucer
1964
La mia signora
My Wife
1964
Yankee
1966
Heart in His Mouth
Col cuore in gola
Dead Stop: le coeur aux levres
Deadly Sweet
En cinquième vitesse (In Fifth Speed)
Escalation
Heart Beat
I Am What I Am
Ich Bin Wie Ich Bin: Das Mädchen aus der Carnaby-Street
With Bated Breath
1967

AVANT-GARDE, UNDERGROUND,
AND GUERRILLA FILMMAKING


NEROSUBIANCO

Attraction — Black on White
1968
A Clockwork Orange
Arancia meccanica
1968
Unproduced film, later made by Stanley Kubrick
L’urlo
Howl
1968–1970
Barbarella Goes Down
1969
Unproduced film
Dropout
1970
DNA
1970
Unfinished film
L’evasione
The Evasion
1971
Unproduced film
La vacanza
Vacation
1971
Untitled thriller
1971
Unproduced film
I Miss Sonja Henie
Nedostaje Mi Sonja Henie
1972
Ordine e disciplina
Order and Sex Discipline
1972
Unproduced film
Storia d’Italia
History of Italy
1972
Unproduced film
Le sardomobili
The Sardine-Mobiles
1972
TV commercial

BIG BUDGETS AND BIG HEADACHES

I Borgia
The Borgias
1972–2008
Unproduced film
Pranzo di famiglia
Family Lunch
1973
Stage play by Roberto Lerici
Punch
1974
Unproduced film
Sturmtruppen
1974
Unproduced film, later made by Salvatore Samperi
Salon Kitty
Madam Kitty
1975–1976
Pranzo di famiglia
Family Lunch
1976 revival
Stage play by Roberto Lerici
L’uomo di sabbia
The Man of Sand
1976
Stage play by Riccardo Reim
Gore Vidal’s Caligula
Io Caligola
1976–1977
A Documentary on the Making of
“Gore Vidal’s Caligula”

1976–1981
Punch
1977–1978
Unproduced film
The Pig Advantage
1978
Unproduced film

AFTERMATH:
THE LAST GUERRILLA FILM
AND THEN RICHES

Action
1979
Champagne
dir: Gigliola Faenza, with Tinto Brass as editor and actor
1981
Unproduced
La felicità
dir: Vittorio De Sisti, with Tinto Brass as actor
Four-episode TV series
1981
Boudoir
1981–1982
Unproduced film, later adapted for the stage (1985)
Tinto Brass’ “Fanny Hill”
1982–1983
Unproduced film, later made by Harry Alan Towers
Lord Byron
1982
Unproduced film
The Key
La chiave
1983
Pranzo di famiglia
Family Lunch
1983 revival
Stage play by Roberto Lerici
3-13-33
Unproduced TV series
1983
Untitled British Film
Unproduced film
1985

EROTICA — THE FIRST PHASE

Miranda
1985
Capriccio
Love and Passion
1987
Snack Bar Budapest
1988

Calze Levante

1990
TV commercial
Paprika
1991
Lulù
1991
Stage play by Frank Wedekind
Così fan tutte
All Ladies Do It
1992
Tenera è la carne
Tender Is the Flesh
1993
Unfinished film
L’uomo che guarda
The Voyeur
1994

Reggiseno Infiore

dir: Alessandro D’Alatri
1994
TV commercial

EROTICA — THE SECOND PHASE

Fermo posta Tinto Brass
P.O. Box Tinto Brass
1995
Venezia Erotica
February 1996
Foreword to a book
The Big Strip !
uptight9.".Mama Oliver.eastwest {the Shantel Remixes}
1996
45rpm 12" vinyl
Quando l’Italia non èra un Paese povero
When Italy Wasn’t a Poor Country
dir: Stefano Missio
Tinto Brass interviewed on camera
1997
Monella
Frivolous Lola
1998
Lucignolo
Cute Little Luke
dir: Massimo Ceccherini
Tinto Brass as actor
1999
TRAsgreDIRE
Transgressing
1999–2000
Corti circuiti erotici
Erotic Short Circuits
Various directors
Tinto Brass introduces each
1999–2000
Untitled Ukrainian project
Unproduced film
1999
EuroTrash
TV interview
2000
Così come sono
That’s the Way I Am
2000
Introduction to a novel
Senso ’45
Black Angel
2001–2002
Fallo!
Do It!
2003

Monamour
2005
Afterword

Acknowledgments

I am forever indebted to my Milanese friend Massimo Polidoro, who will probably never understand why I like Tinto Brass’s films, but who has nonetheless been gracious enough to send me some Italian VHS releases that are unavailable on this side of the Atlantic. I am also indebted to Walter and Carmen of Buffalord in Bettole di Buffalora, Brescia, who have been kind enough to go far out of their way to keep me apprised of Tinto Brass news, to find still more and more and to tell me about VideoPark in Genova, which I would probably never have learned about otherwise. Thanks also to Joyce Elliott of Conyers, Georgia, for allowing me to see La mia signora, Jönas of Sweet Cozy Video in Sweden for allowing me to see NEROSUBIANCO, and to others in England, the Netherlands, Italy, Germany, and Australia, who sold invaluable items on eBay and who otherwise rounded up videos and articles for me. Thanks to their collective efforts, my Tinto Brass collection has grown from four VHS tapes of terrible quality to dozens of tapes and DVDs, many of excellent quality, over just the past year and a half. Ultimately, I’m grateful to the blossoming Internet, without which most of the information and products I’ve gathered would literally have been unobtainable. And thanks to Kevin Christopher for taking three hours out of his schedule to teach me the basics of html and PhotoShop.

— 2 March 2002


SOURCES: This web page is based upon an enormous number of newspaper and magazine clips, along with several books, most notably Stefano Iori’s Tinto Brass and Antonio Tentori’s Tinto Brass: Il senso dei sensi, both of which are available through Tinto Brass’s official web site. Another invaluable source is a paperback from 2005 called Obiettivo Brass, consisting largely of a lengthy interview conducted by Mario Gagliardotto.

The Major Publications
Notes added on 28 April 2007

Hard to find, but I finally got a copy on Thursday night, 26 April 2007. Incredibly good info, and it has transcriptions of those wonderful lyrics that I had so much trouble understanding! Includes the treatments for the unmade movies!!!!!! Click on the picture above to see the front and back covers, the masthead, title page, and copyright page.

Not as hard to find, and it still pops up on eBay once in a blue moon. Click on the picture above to see the front and back covers, the masthead, title page, and copyright page.

Still pops up on eBay. Click on the picture above to see the front and back covers, the masthead, title page, and copyright page.

Oh this one is sweet. It consists largely of affectionate tributes to Tinto Brass from those who have known him and worked with him. Click on the picture above to see the front and back covers, the masthead, title page, and copyright page.

Apparently Nocturno is regularly shipped to subscribers in a plastic wrapper that includes a separately bound supplement entitled Nocturno Dossier. This particular Dossier was devoted entirely to Tinto Brass, and it includes information and photos you won’t find anywhere else. Click on the picture above to order a copy.

The most recent book, which apparently borrowed a bit from my web site. (But then, hey, my web site borrowed from some of the books I’m advertising here.) Click on the picture above to see the front and back covers, the masthead, title page, and copyright page.
Now, how do you get hold of these publications? Well, except for the Nocturno Dossier # 25 it will be a bit tricky to get these items. Keep trying Tinto Brass’s web site, as well as the Internet Bookshop, Hoepli, and BookFinder. Good luck!



Giovanni Brass was born in Milano on Sunday, 26 March 1933, but was raised in Venice. His grandfather, painter Italico Brass, gave the youngster the nickname of Tintoretto, which was itself the nickname of painter Jacopo Robusti (1518–1594). (Incidentally, Gore Vidal, in a TV special called Artful Journeys: Vidal in Venice, referred to Tintoretto as the Cecil B. De Mille of Venetian painters.) Tintoretto was soon shortened to Tinto. Tinto’s father Alessandro was a noted and well-to-do attorney, and Brass originally planned to pursue that same career. He completed his university law degree but then moved to Paris in 1957 and got a job as a projectionist at the Cinémathèque Française, where he also apprenticed to film archivist/curator Henri Langlois through 1960.

Family tree:

Italico Brass (b. 14 December 1870 in Gorizia, d. 16 August 1943 in Venice) married Lina Rebecca “Nina” Vigdoff, originally of Odessa.

Children: Italico and Alessandro.

Alessandro (b. 20 January 1898, Venice; d. 1968) served as Vicepodestà of Venice.

He married Carla (last name unknown, birth and death dates unknown, died at age 97).

Children of Alessandro and Carla: Italico, Giovanni “Tinto, Maurizio “Malo, Andrea.

Tinto (b. 26 March 1933) married Carla “Tinta” Cipriani (b. 30 March 1930, Verona, d. 9 August 2006, Merano), of the famous Cipriani family of restaurateurs.

Tinta’s father was Giuseppe, who established the six-room Locanda Cipriani on the Island of Torcello in the 1930s, frequented by Churchill, Chaplin, Chagall(!), and countless others. It was during a stay here that Hemingway penned Across the River and into the Trees. Tinta’s brother was Arrigo “Harry,” who lent his name to Harry’s Bar in Venice, which was made famous by Hemingway. Tinto and Tinta later came to operate the Locanda Cipriani, though for how long I do not know. They were certainly in charge in 1991.

Tinto and Tinta’s children: Beatrice (b. 1960) and Bonifacio (b. 1963).

A colleague in the UK just forwarded me a little information about Tinto’s brother Maurizio. This comes from a 1983 book called L’immagine e il mito di Venezia nel cinema: “Born in Milano on 27 August 1941 (a Venetian and Tinto’s brother) — Actor and documentarian. Actor and assistant for Rossellini (Acts of the Apostles). Made shorts at the Beaubourg in Paris and was, more recently, active in the writing of dubbing dialogue for foreign films.” Just after sending me this, the same colleague informed me that Malo had recently passed away, and he sent me a link to Claudio Bondì’s tribute: “Malo (Maurizio) Brass, brother of the more famous Tinto, has died. We were friends; similar sentiments bound us together: an affection for Rossellini (for whom Malo was assistant and actor in Acts of the Apostles), the countryside we chose to live in (Trevignano Romano), the love of Venice, of which he was a citizen and I a sometime resident. Years ago when we got to know each other at the Hermes bar, I asked him why he had chosen this landscape. He responded: ‘How can a Venetian not live by the water?’ Malo was a cultured, educated man, of old-fashioned elegance, who spoke French perfectly. When he would meet my wife Laura on the street, he, taking off his hat, would begin to ‘chat’ in Venetian. It was amusing to hear them chatter in their own language, or sometimes in French, in Alto Lazio. His slender figure stood out in the care with which he selected a booklet in the Sunday market stall, or even a walking stick, a bow tie. Things were always a bit out of date, but tasteful. The two of us discussed cinema, literature. In a kindly way, he presented my collection of poems to the Palma cinema. He wrote and read a learned introduction which he then gave me and which I keep. With Malo went also an eyewitness of Roberto Rossellini’s television “of conscience,” which, however you wish to consider it, today seems to come from a utopian and inimitable “elsewhere.” Dear Malo, I’ll miss you. May the earth rest lightly upon you.”

Any further information is most welcome!