It Started in Naples

It Started in Naples is a 1960 American romantic comedy film directed by Melville Shavelson and produced by Jack Rose from a screenplay by Suso Cecchi d'Amico based on the story by Michael Pertwee and Jack Davies. The Technicolor cinematography was by Robert Surtees. The film stars Clark Gable, Sophia Loren, Vittorio De Sica and an Italian cast.

It Started in Naples
Directed byMelville Shavelson
Produced byJack Rose
Written bySuso Cecchi d'Amico (screenplay)
Michael Pertwee
Jack Davies (story)
StarringClark Gable
Sophia Loren
Vittorio De Sica
Music byAlessandro Cicognini
Carlo Savina
CinematographyRobert Surtees
Edited byFrank Bracht
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release date
  • August 7, 1960 (1960-08-07)
Running time
100 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$2,300,000 (US/ Canada)[1]

The film was released by Paramount Pictures on August 7, 1960.


Michael Hamilton (Clark Gable), a Philadelphia lawyer, travels to Naples in Southern Italy only a few days before his planned wedding to settle the estate of his late brother, Joseph, with Italian lawyer Vitalli (Vittorio De Sica). In the opening narration he states he "was here before with the 5th US Army" in World War II. In Naples, Michael discovers that his brother had a son, eight-year-old Nando (Carlo Angeletti), who is being cared for by his maternal aunt Lucia (Sophia Loren), a cabaret singer. Joseph never married Nando's mother but drowned with her in a boating accident. Joseph's actual wife, whom he left in 1950, is alive in Philadelphia. Michael discovers to his dismay that his brother spent a fortune on fireworks. After seeing Nando handing out racy photos of Lucia at 2 A.M., Michael wants to enroll Nando in the American School at Rome, but Lucia wins custody of the boy. Despite the age difference, romance soon blossoms between Michael and Lucia, and he decides to stay in Italy.

It marked the final film to be released within Gable's lifetime and it was his last film in color. One of the film highlights contained a tongue-in-cheek musical number by Loren called "Tu vuò fà l'americano" (You Want To Be Americano) written by famed Neapolitan composer Renato Carosone. Filmed on location in Rome, Naples and Capri, It Started in Naples was nominated for an Oscar for its art direction (Hal Pereira, Roland Anderson, Samuel M. Comer, Arrigo Breschi). It was released to DVD in North America in 2005.


See also


  1. "Rental Potentials of 1960", Variety, 4 January 1961 p 47. Please note figures are rentals as opposed to total gross.

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