Nine-year-old Mariuzzedda lives in post-World War II Calabria, Southern Italy. Each morning, she goes to work, harvesting olives, then to school, with a grumbling, empty tummy. Unable to resist the aromas of the local bakery, she begins to take bread on credit. When Mr. Baker (Vincent Schiavelli, Ghost, Amadeus, One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest) eventually asks her to pay her debt, Mariuzzedda hasn’t the money, and is forced to make a harsh decision: either sell her hair to make a wig for baby Jesus’ statue in church or face an inevitable beating from her proud Mamma (Lucia Grillo, Summer of Sam), who toils to provide what little they have. Mariuzzedda’s acceptance of the harsh consequences proves a courage and maturity beyond her tender years. Music by Sergio Cammariere (Winner San Remo Festival). In collaboration with Ganga (The Big Question, AFI Fest 2004)
DIRECTOR BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE:
Lucia Grillo studied cinema at New York University and acting at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute, New York. Her background as an actress includes work with director Spike Lee (Summer of Sam and Finlandia Vodka spot, Sin). Founding Calabrisella Films in 1999, she directed the television spot for the Los Angeles Italian Film Awards (Bravo, IFC), and Special Tributes to Gordon Mitchell and Enrico Lo Verso (RAI International, Italy’s TV2). “The Cost of Bread (A pena do pana)” is her first film, featuring actor, Vincent Schiavelli (Ghost, One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest, Amadeus). Lucia is now developing two documentaries and a feature film.