Massimo Pupillo

Domenico Massimo Pupillo[1] was an Italian film director. Pupillo was born in Rodi Garganico, Puglia in 1922.[1][lower-alpha 1] He started his career in film through his acquaintance Fernandel as Marcel Pagnol's assistant.[1] He claims to have made over 250 short films before the release of his film Gli amichi dell'Isola, a feature film set in Sardinia with unprofessional actors.[1] After directing Terror-Creatures from the Grave, he went on two direct two more horror films in a row: Bloody Pit of Horror and La vendetta di Lady Morgan.[1]

Massimo Pupillo
Domenico Massimo Pupillo

OccupationFilm director

After making these horror films, Pupillo stated that he originally made them to get out of making documentary films and enter the commercial film market.[3] After making La vendetta di Lady Morgan he declared he was finished with making horror films with his following directorial work becoming scarce.[3] His follow-ups included the Western Django Kills Softly released in 1967 and the mondo film Love: The Great Unknown.[3] Pupillo also wrote a few mondo films prior to directing including Primitive Love and Sweden: Heaven and Hell which were both directed by Luigi Scattini and Taboos of the World by Romolo Marcellini.[3]

Pupillo later described himself as "disgusted" by the type of cinema he was making and primarily worked in television during the 1970s.[3] His last feature film was Sa Jana which was shot in Sardinia.[3] According to Merrill Aldighieri and Lucas Balbo's documentary Mondo Pupillo - Une conversation avec Massimo Pupillo, it is likely that Pupillo died on December 29, 1999 but no evidence has been found to confirm this.[3]

Partial filmography

TitleYearCredited asNotesRef(s)
Terror-Creatures from the Grave 1965 Yes Yes Producer [4]
Bloody Pit of Horror 1965 Yes [5]
La vendetta di Lady Morgan 1965 Yes [2]
Django Kills Softly 1967 Yes [6]

Notes and references


  1. Many reference books and websites including the Internet Movie Database carry incorrect information about Pupillo's place of birth and birth year and full name.[2]


  1. Curti 2015, p. 152.
  2. Curti 2015, p. 153.
  3. Curti 2015, p. 155.
  4. Curti 2015, p. 149.
  5. Curti 2015, p. 138.
  6. Grant 2011, p. 445.


  • Curti, Roberto (2015). Italian Gothic Horror Films, 1957-1969. McFarland. ISBN 1476619891.
  • Grant, Kevin (2011). Any Gun Can Play. Fab Press. ISBN 9781903254615.

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