First Images of Willem Dafoe as Gay Director Pier Paolo Pasolini Released

By Patrick Yacco

Originally published on March 19 2014 6:24 PM ET and The Criterion Collection's Twitter feed have both shared photos of Willem Dafoe as famed queer director Pier Paolo Pasolini. The images come from the upcoming film Pasolini, directed by Abel Ferrara, which focuses on the final days of the controversial filmmaker's life.

First look at Willem Dafoe as Pier Paolo Pasolini!

— Criterion Collection (@Criterion) March 18, 2014

Born in 1922, Pasolini worked in art forms including films, novels, poetry, and plays. Accattone, his first film, featured numerous nonprofessional actors in its portrayal of Rome's peasant culture and caused an uproar for its depiction of the capital's underbelly. His celebrated "Trilogy of Life" movies explored the Middle Ages and included abundant nudity, sex, and slapstick humor. Pasolini's final film, Salo, was based on the Marquis de Sade’s 120 Days of Sodom and was denounced for its scenes of torture.

Pasolini was murdered shortly after Salo was released. He was killed November 2, 1975, after being run over repeatedly with his own car. Giuseppe Pelosi, a 17-year old hustler, admitted to the crime but then retracted his story. Other theories have since popped up, but insufficient evidence has been provided for the authorities to reopen the case.

Pasolini does not currently have a release date but could begin screening on the festival circuit before the end of the year.

Patrick Yacco
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