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Eduardo De Filippo, who he was and what he did: films, works and private life

Eduardo De Filippo, together with his brothers, is one of the most prestigious Italian artists.
Translated and represented all over the world, despite the strong sense of belonging and love for his hometown, Naples, repeatedly awarded and appointed senator for life.
His personal story is a source of inspiration, along with his career.
This evening "The De Filippo brothers" will be broadcast on Rai 1, the film that traces the events of Eduardo, Peppino and Titina.
There would be a lot to say about this artist, starting from the Neapolitan dramaturgy brought all over the world, passing through his political and social commitment.
His works tell it all in a recognizable voice, full of meaning, humor and emotion.
However, let us try to report the most salient points of his life, who he was and what he did.
Who was Eduardo De Filippo Eduardo De Filippo was an Italian playwright, actor, director, screenwriter and poet.
He is hands down one of the most influential theater authors of the twentieth century (and beyond), so much so that he is often referred to only by his first name Eduardo.
Born in Naples on May 24th to Eduardo Scarpetta and Luisa De Filippo.
Together with her brothers Peppino and Titina she takes her maternal surname, given that her parents were not married and her father Eduardo already had a legitimate family (with Rosa De Filippo, Luisa's aunt).
He had, on his father's side, 6 other brothers and sisters.
What he did, films and comedies Eduardo was born into an artistic family, but soon managed to find a unique voice, standing out in particular as an author.
In his career he collaborates with his sister Titina, his brother Peppino and also with his half-brother Vincenzo Scarpetta.
After various companies and some experiences on his own, he founded the "I De Filippo" Humorous Theater, which excelled with the representation of "Natale in casa Cupiello" in 1931 at the Kursaal Theater in Naples.
If you had to choose the most beautiful comedy by Eduardo De Filippo you would certainly think of this one, together with Filumena Marturano.
Beyond personal tastes, these are his most famous and critically acclaimed works.
In any case, from that moment on the company began a period of intense work, enjoying ever greater success and bringing to the stage works such as "Sik-Sik", "Quei figuri di thirty years ago" and many collaborations with her half-sister Maria Scarpetta.
The meeting with Luigi Pirandello inspired an interpretation of the opera "Il beretto a sonagli", marking a new artistic phase that allowed the De Filippo trio to take to the stages throughout Italy.
Eduardo's career is a unique mix between attachment to the roots and Neapolitan popular culture with innovation, which is reflected in every part of his works, starting from the language adopted in the comedies.
This is what allows him to consolidate himself as an author, raising the "dialect theater" to an art theater, conquering national and non-national critics.
Eduardo De Filippo also conquers cinema, as an actor, director and sometimes screenwriter.
He made his debut with “Three men in frak” by Mario Bonnard, often collaborated with his friend Vittorio De Sica and after directing “Spara forte, stronger…
I don't understand!” he also leaves this adventure to dedicate himself to television.
He successfully revived his comedies on the small screen, playing his last role in 1984 in the film “Cuore” by Luigi Comencini.
In the meantime, Eduardo had founded a new company, “Il Teatro di Eduardo”, after an argument with his brother Peppino.
read also Titina De Filippo, who she was and what she did: biography, films and private life Why did the De Filippo brothers fight? On 20 December 1944 Eduardo performed for the last time, alongside his brother Peppino.
The two fall out, marking the end of the trio, after having accumulated tensions and disagreements for many years.
It seems that the rift between the brothers originated from different artistic and theatrical visions, so much so that each of them later managed to bring forward a unique and well-defined personality.
The arguments probably also stemmed from very different political opinions, but also – according to some rumors – from Eduardo's dismissal of the actress Lidia Maresca, with whom Peppino had a liaison and who was his second wife.
The two have never really reconciled, outside of professional collaborations, so much so that they even discussed the burial of their older sister Titina.
Eduardo commemorated his brother's death with these words: I didn't miss him when I was alive, but I miss him a lot now: as a companion, as a friend but not as a brother.
Eduardo's private life On a sentimental level, there are three women who have most marked the life of Eduardo De Filippo.
Dorothy Pennington, who he married in 1928, but their marriage was annulled, Thea Prandi, with whom he had his children Luisa and Luca, and Isabella Quarantotti, with whom he married in 1977.
A troubled path, made dramatic by several deaths that marked the 'author.
First of all, the death of his daughter Luisella followed by that of his ex-wife Thea Prandi, and finally, the disappearance of his beloved sister Titina.
How Eduardo De Filippo died Eduardo De Filippo, like his sister Titina, suffered from heart problems.
In 1974 he underwent the application of a pacemaker and 20 days after the operation he returned to the stage, dying on 31 October 1984 due to kidney failure.
The funeral was held with a religious ceremony in the basilica of San Giovanni Laterano, after the funeral chamber in the Senate, which was followed by a civil ceremony to allow the citizens to say goodbye to him.
More than 30,000 people took to the square for a final farewell, in addition to the numerous spectators who followed the ceremony live on Rai.
The body was then taken to the Verano cemetery in Rome.
Eduardo's commitment did not waver even in old age, seeing him completely dedicated to his work and to political and social issues.
In 1981 he was appointed Senator for life, a position which allowed him to commit even more to the re-education of minors.
read also Peppino De Filippo: what he did, films and private life

Author: A.W.M.

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