Ginger and Fred (1986)

Ginger and Fred (1986)

Taglines: The movie that watches television through the eyes of Fellini.

Amelia and Pippo are reunited after several decades to perform their old music-hall act (imitating Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers) on a TV variety show. It’s both a touchingly nostalgic journey into the past, and a viciously satirical attack on television in general and Italian TV in particular, portraying it as a mindless freakshow aimed at morons.

Ginger and Fred (Italian: Ginger e Fred) is a 1986 comedy/drama film directed by Federico Fellini and starring Marcello Mastroianni and Giulietta Masina. The title is a reference to the American dancing couple Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. The two leads portray Italian impersonators of Astaire and Rogers who reunite after thirty years of retirement for a vulgar and bizarre television extravaganza.

The movie is a complex and coherent indictment of the shallowness of commercial television, which, eager to squeeze commercials across every possible kind of program, deadens the viewers’ ability to appreciate complex or thought-provoking themes.

The film was the subject of a trademark claim in the United States by Ginger Rogers, who claimed in Rogers v. Grimaldi that the film violated her Lanham Act trademark rights, right of publicity, and was a “false light” defamation. The Second Circuit rejected this claim, finding that “suppressing an artistically relevant though ambiguous[ly] title[d] film” on trademark grounds would “unduly restrict expression.”

Ginger and Fred Movie Poster (1986)

Ginger and Fred (1986)

Directed by: Federico Fellini
Starring: Marcello Mastroianni, Giulietta Masina, Franco Fabrizi, Friedrich von Ledebur, Augusto Poderosi, Martin Maria Blau, Barbara Scoppa
Screenplay by: Federico Fellini, Tonino Guerra
Production Design by: Dante Ferretti
Cinematography by: Tonino Delli Colli, Ennio Guarnieri
Film Editing by: Nino Baragli, Ugo De Rossi, Ruggero Mastroianni
Costume Design by: Danilo Donati
Set Decoration by: Franco Fumagalli, Angelo Santucci
Art Direction by: Nazzareno Piana
Music by: Nicola Piovani
Distributed by: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release Date: March 28, 1986