An exclusive look at the future of The Bad Guy: A conversation with Luigi Lo Cascio

Join me as I unravel the layers of the talented Sicilian actor Luigi Lo Cascio’s artistry in this exclusive interview, diving deep into his commitment to complex roles and profound social activism. And don’t miss out on the insider anecdotes from his delightful performance in the globally acclaimed Amazon series, The Bad Guy.

But hold onto your seats! The Bad Guy is back with a bang! Following the smash-hit success of its first season, Amazon Prime Video has green-lit a highly anticipated second season of the thrilling Italian crime series.

The bad guy Luigi Lo Cascio and Monica Costa London Mums magazine collage

Luigi Lo Cascio shared behind-the-scenes insights into his Bad Guy ’s character, Nino Scotellaro, an incorruptible Sicilian public prosecutor, who has mesmerised audiences worldwide, cementing The Bad Guy as essential viewing for fans of riveting storytelling.

But wait, there’s more! Season 2 welcomes Stefano Accorsi to the stellar cast, adding another layer of intrigue to the already gripping narrative. Directed by Giuseppe G. Stasi and Giancarlo Fontana, and crafted by a team of talented writers including Ludovica Rampoldi, Davide Serino, and Giuseppe G. Stasi, this new season promises to push the boundaries of storytelling even further.

Produced by Nicola Giuliano, Francesca Cima, Carlotta Calori, and Viola Prestieri at Indigo Film in collaboration with Amazon MGM Studios, Fifth Season, and Rai Cinema, The Bad Guy Season 2 is set to debut first on Prime Video in Italy in 2025, with a free TV airing on RAI soon after.

Get ready to be spellbound once again by the brilliance of Luigi Lo Cascio and the electrifying world of The Bad Guy!

MC: The Bad Guy. You left us breathless… what a cliffhanger…

LLC (Luigi Lo Cascio): Tell me about it! Imagine how much I love filming this series. I really have no idea… I didn’t even understand some things about the plot. I know someone tricked me, but I don’t know anything else.

MC: What was your main motivation for participating in The Bad Guy?

LLC: Did you like it?

MC: Yes, I loved it. And it’s a hit in America.

LLC: Oh yeah! That’s wonderful!

MC: When portraying films about the mafia, it’s easy to fall into stereotypes, and one must fight against clichés…

LLC: I enjoyed reading the script. In the writing, those elements you noticed while watching were already there. It was witty without becoming silly; it had an ironic tone. The things it talked about seemed to have a foundation because they are situations partly taken from reality. When something is absolutely paradoxical, it makes you laugh. But what perhaps conquered me the most is that I speak authentic Palermitan. This is hardly ever done because usually actors speak in a conventional Sicilian that all viewers understand. Instead, in The Bad Guy, there was no fear of subtitles, so I, Vincenzo Pirrotta, and all the Sicilians on set were able to remain faithful to the Palermitan dialect. I really like this aspect because it gives the story a sense of authenticity.

MC: Your career has been characterised by the combination of cinema and social activism on topics of certain social relevance. Of all your films, which one did you like the most?

LLC: Without a doubt, The Hundred Steps! It was my first film, and it has always remained in my heart. The Antman is an extraordinary film that I arrived at now, already being an actor with some experience. However, in the case of The Hundred Steps, there is something more that has nothing to do with the film.

Il signore delle formiche is as much liked as The Best of Youth, so I would put them together. My love for The Hundred Steps is linked to the fact that I personally met Peppino Impastato’s family, and I was with his mother and brother, who was then an unknown person. Thanks to this film, everyone became aware of the sacrifice of this man, who died in such a tragic yet important way for many young people I met, and who, over time, continued to find inspiration in the film and re-evaluate the meaning of their lives. I’m sure that if I say The Hundred Steps was the most important film of my life, no one will be offended, considering that I am also Sicilian and it was my film debut. I can’t say it’s the most beautiful. The Antman is an extraordinarily beautiful film, so these rankings are also helpful for me.

Monica Costa (MC): How did you prepare for the role of a controversial character like Aldo Braibanti in the film Il signore delle formiche (The Lord of the Ants)?

Luigi Lo Cascio (LLC): Perhaps controversial for those who didn’t know him. Who would have imagined that his romantic choices could overshadow the greatness of his intellectual experience? Braibanti disliked the word “intellectual” – let’s say he was an artist… in fact, his romantic choices made him appear contradictory, tarnishing his greatness and his importance on the Italian theatre scene of those years. For me, the challenge is to interpret a giant’s story. This often happens with compelling stories of real people. Because the characters are certainly more interesting than the actors. No one would make a film about me. And this is not fishing for compliments here. There is no romantic life behind me, or any adventures, who knows. Fortunately, I must say, nothing serious has happened to me like what happened to Braibanti. There are stories that need to be told, and therefore, the actor is always a small entity that carries a giant’s story on its shoulders. So the challenge is: “Will I be believable when I say those words? Or when I direct a ’60s play? Will I be believable when I face the judge and say certain words?” It’s always a bit of a surprise. The director who guides you is very important in those cases – Amelio trusted that I could be believable. I trusted him, and we both trusted each other. And then, one jumps.

MC: Which aspects of Braibanti’s story do you consider still relevant today?

LLC: Many. Aldo Braibanti – beyond his little-known artistic qualities following this incident, which heavily influenced his life – is the only Italian who has ever been convicted of plagiarism. In 1968, during the period of protests, it was contradictory to be convicted of plagiarism. With his magic powers of seduction, Braibanti would have “manipulated” a young man – who, by the way, was over twenty years old – into an artistic circle of which he was the master. The young man’s family filed a complaint against him, leading to his arrest and trial. Aldo Braibanti was the only person in history to be convicted of plagiarism. However, a few years later, this crime was declared unconstitutional, so the famous Article 603 had no reason to exist in the penal code. Many intellectuals took an interest in the matter and tried to save him, but they failed, and the sentence was severe. It’s not so much about the crime of plagiarism, which no longer exists, but about using judicial instruments to target minorities and those who are considered different and not legitimate in our society. In reality, the trial was not so much about plagiarism but because Braibanti had a homosexual relationship. Given that prejudices and similar discrimination still exist today, this film is still relevant.

“The Lord of the Ants” conveys the beauty and naturalness of love: it is not a vicious love tainted by something shameful or dirty. However, the judiciary used deviant motives to prosecute and convict Aldo Braibanti. Theirs was a pure love marked by romanticism. If only there were more loves based on the exchange of books and poems, going to art exhibitions together… There is something so noble in the relationship between these two men, and it was truly a twist of fate that they were separated for a lifetime. The two lovers never saw each other again because not only was the young man taken away from this love, but the two lovers were forever separated. The young man also underwent over 40 electroshock treatments, which ended up devastating his psyche. He died a few years later, alone and in poverty. So it was the family that destroyed this poor boy without even wanting him back home. Because, in the end, it was as if he had tarnished their reputation.

MC: Tell me about your relationship with director Gianni Amelio and his directing style.

LLC: It was wonderful to collaborate with him, right from our first meeting. He told me about the story of Braibanti, which I didn’t know about from a judicial point of view, nor from an artistic one. Gianni said to me, “I think you are Braibanti, but we will gradually build the character together. Do you feel like finding out if it will really be you?” At that moment, I thought that even if I didn’t end up doing the film, it would have been a fantastic experience to have these meetings with him and the process of getting closer to the character. I already knew Gianni, but we hadn’t reached this depth of understanding. Now I can say, even on his part, that there is truly a friendship between us. We even went on a tour together to bring the film to various cities in Italy. His sensitivity struck me. Those who are sensitive rarely lack social engagement. This effort primarily means taking care and being concerned about human beings and their feelings, their pain, their emotions. This already has something to do with politics. “The Antman” demonstrates it absolutely. There is no possibility of feeling and relating if power crushes you. Fundamentally, in life, it is crucial that there is the freedom to fully live a relationship, so freedom is coupled with power. Therefore, even when we talk about a love story, we immediately face the society in which this love story tries to be lived.

MC: In The Antman, you speak with a very believable Emilian accent.

LLC: I appreciate the compliment, especially knowing that you are from Bologna… When I took on that challenge, I knew it would be impossible to be credible for Emilia-Romagna people like you. I just wanted to be credible for Tuscany, Marche, Veneto, and all the regions surrounding Emilia-Romagna. Moreover, as a Sicilian, I have to endure many actors making films about my land, pretending to be Sicilian. For once, if a Sicilian plays an Emilian, it can be tolerated.

 

MC: Thank you very much for this lovely chat!

LLC: Thank you for your attention. I hope to return to London soon to present more films. Goodbye!

 

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