CLU screens award-winning Italian film

Second event in free international series is Nov. 13

“Pranzo di Ferragosto (Mid-August Lunch)” is a tale of good food, feisty ladies and unlikely friendships.

(THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Oct. 23, 2013) The second feature in California Lutheran University’s International Film Series is an award-winning comedy-drama that captures the essence of living the Italian life and the universal need for friendship and human contact at any age.

“Pranzo di Ferragosto (Mid-August Lunch)” will be screened at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 13, in CLU’s Lundring Events Center.

First-time director Gianni Di Gregorio wrote and stars in this tale of good food, feisty ladies and unlikely friendships during Italy’s biggest summer holiday. The 2008 film won numerous prizes at international festivals, including Best First Film at Venice, the Satyajit Ray Award at London and the Golden Snail at the Academy of Food and Film in Bologna.

Broke and armed with only a glass of wine and a wry sense of humor, middle-aged Gianni lives with his 93-year-old mother in their ancient apartment. The condo debts are mounting, but if Gianni looks after the building manager’s mother during the Pranzo di Ferragosto, all will be forgiven. When the manager also shows up with his aunt, and a doctor friend appears with his mother, Gianni is faced with keeping four lively older women well-fed and happy in his small apartment.

Di Gregorio started his career in the theater and then went to work in film. He wrote the screenplay for the 1986 film “Sembra morto ma è solo svenuto,” which won an award at the 1987 Venice Film Festival.

CLU’s department of languages and cultures and Center for Equality and Justice are sponsoring the free event with a grant from the CLU Community Leaders Association. Inspired by the six-year success of the university’s French Film Festival, faculty members replaced the event with the international festival this year.

The series will continue with the Chinese film “Red Cliff” Feb. 5 at Muvico Thousand Oaks 14, the German movie “The Experiment” March 5 in Lundring, and the French film “Chicken with Plums” April 30 at Muvico. All screenings begin at 7 p.m.

Lundring Events Center is in the Gilbert Sports and Fitness Center, which is located at 130 Overton Court on the Thousand Oaks campus.

For more information, contact Brittany Asaro at