Federico Fellini

The White Sheik

The White Sheik

Federico Fellini drew upon his background as a cartoonist for his first solo feature, a charming comic fable about the lure of fantasy and the pitfalls of temptation. In Rome for her honeymoon, a wide-eyed newlywed (Brunella Bovo) sneaks away from her straitlaced groom (Leopoldo Trieste) and goes in search of the White Sheik (Alberto Sordi), the dashing hero of a photographed comic strip of which she is enamored—but soon discovers that her romantic ideal may be only an illusion. Featuring a memorable appearance by Giulietta Masina (playing the character she would reprise in Nights of Cabiria) and Fellini’s first collaboration with composer Nino Rota, The White Sheik finds the director already taking up one of his favorite themes: the alchemical interplay between life and art, imagination and reality.

Film Info

  • Federico Fellini
  • Italy
  • 1952
  • 86 minutes
  • Black & White
  • 1.37:1
  • Italian
  • Spine #189

Special Features

  • New digital transfer
  • New video interviews with actors Brunella Bovo and Leopoldo Trieste, and Fellini friend Moraldo Rossi
  • Essay by critic Jonathan Rosenbaum
  • New and improved English subtitle translation
  • Optimal image quality: RSDL dual-layer edition

Cover by Eva Wah

Purchase Options

Collector's Sets

Collector's Set

Essential Art House: 50 Years of Janus Films

Essential Art House: 50 Years of Janus Films

DVD Box Set

50 Discs

$650.00

Collector's Set

Essential Fellini

Essential Fellini

Blu-Ray Box Set

15 Discs

$199.96

Special Features

  • New digital transfer
  • New video interviews with actors Brunella Bovo and Leopoldo Trieste, and Fellini friend Moraldo Rossi
  • Essay by critic Jonathan Rosenbaum
  • New and improved English subtitle translation
  • Optimal image quality: RSDL dual-layer edition

Cover by Eva Wah

The White Sheik
Cast
Alberto Sordi
Fernando Rivoli
Brunella Bovo
Wanda Cavalli
Leopoldo Trieste
Ivan Cavalli
Giulietta Masina
Cabiria
Credits
Director
Federico Fellini
Screenplay
Federico Fellini
Screenplay
Tullio Pinelli
with the collaboration of
Ennio Flaiano
From an idea by
Michelangelo Antonioni
Cinematography
Arturo Gallea
Editing
Rolando Benedetti
Music
Nino Rota

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Federico Fellini

Writer, Director

Federico Fellini
Federico Fellini

One of Italy’s great modern directors, Federico Fellini was a larger-than-life maestro who created an inimitable cinematic style combining surreal carnival with incisive social critique. While his most popular—and accessible—film, the darkly nostalgic childhood memoir Amarcord, is a great entryway into his oeuvre, , a collage of memories, dreams, and fantasies about a director’s artistic crisis, is perhaps his masterpiece. In his early career, Fellini was both a screenwriter for neorealist pioneer Roberto Rossellini and a newspaper caricaturist in postwar Rome, competing influences he would bring together with startling results. After such early works as I vitelloni, Fellini broke away from neorealism’s political strictures with the beloved La strada, and from there boldly explored his obsessions with the circus, societal decadence, spiritual redemption, and, most controversially, women, in such films as Nights of Cabiria, Juliet of the Spirits, and And the Ship Sails On.