Italian media is widely reporting that she had been ill for some time and her condition worsened in recent days. She was admitted to hospital in Rome, before passing away today.
Pedicini was best known for her feature doc Faith, which premiered at IDFA in 2019 and had a successful run on the festival circuit, picking up awards at DocsBarcelona and Belgium’s Docville.
She also directed 2017’s Dove cadono le ombre (Where The Shadows Fall), a drama about a lesser known chapter of Swiss history, and 2013’s From The Depths, a documentary shot 500 meters below sea level in a coal mine following a female miner.
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Filmitalia, the Italian promotional body, posted the following statement on its website (translated from Italian):
“With you a piece of the future of Italian cinema disappears, because your few films, beautiful and courageous, have already left a mark. Sensitivity, strength and tenderness have characterized your images, your cinema, like you, not to be forgotten. Filmitalia will not stop reminding you.”
Donatella Palermo, producer of Faith, told Cinematografo: “Today Valentina is gone. This just passed was her last night. It is difficult to accept. I think of your film From The Depths: it begins with a descent into the darkness of the earth, an image that becomes darker and darker and a woman’s voice saying: ‘Breathe, breathe slowly, do not be afraid; soon your eyes will get used to the dark’.”
“And at the end of the film a woman walks on the horizon and an inscription appears: ‘And I don’t know how to swim the night now | I did something against fear | I sat down to write | for those who want to sit down.’ Here, Valentina didn’t spend the night, but she wrote her own films. We can sit and watch them and something of her is still there. ‘And the night is less scary now’,”.
Paolo Del Brocco, CEO of Rai Cineama, also told the same publication: “I am very saddened by the premature death of Valentina Pedicini, a talented director who brought us with her latest delicate and powerful work Faith to IDFA in Amsterdam and then to Berlin, the documentary produced by Rai Cinema which has deservedly collected many awards in the world.”
“Many of us have lost a precious friend, but the world has lost an artist, a vision, a window on infinity,” her agent Jean-Paul Bosco said in a statement.
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