After the Fox

Film

After the Fox (Italian: Caccia alla volpe) is a 1966 Italian comedy film starring Peter Sellers and directed by Vittorio De Sica. The screenplay is in English, by Neil Simon and De Sica's longtime collaborator, Cesare Zavattini. Despite its notable credits, the film was poorly received when it was released. It has since gained a cult following for its numerous in-jokes skewering pompous directors.

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    After the Fox                                     

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  • The story of After the Fox, briefly, for the few who saw it and don’t remember it, was about a small-time thief and safecracker named Aldo Vanucci who has been caught and sent to jail. When his cohorts tell him about a huge job coming up, one that can result in millions, he tells them he is through with crime. Yet once he hears that his sister, Gina, has become a streetwalker in Rome, he decides to break out of jail and take on the deal that’s come up in order to save his beloved sister. He doesn’t realize his sister is not a streetwalker but is only playing one in a low-budget picture being filmed on the streets of Rome. The deal that is presented to Vanucci (Peter Sellers) is that thieves have stolen an enormous amount of gold bullion in Cairo but have not figured out a way to smuggle it into Italy. Vanucci then comes up with a brilliant scheme. He will pose as a great new avant-garde filmmaker, cast his cohorts as photographers and actors, and film a picture about smugglers that takes place at a beach in a small town. What the smugglers in the film are doing is bringing large amounts of gold bullion into Italy. The eager townspeople are so excited at the prospect of being in a film, they agree to play small parts, as do the real police, who play the dupes who let the smuggled gold into the country. It is, then, a film within a film within a film, with plenty of room to take potshots at the over-praised new directors in the Italian film industry. I think that’s what interested De Sica. Not to make fun of himself as much as of those new upstarts that now were mimicking him and Rossellini and Fellini. Quite honestly I saw it just as a farce, but if De Sica knew a way to give it some importance, it was in my best interest. I was there to learn, not to quibble.

    Neil SimonRewrites

From This Book

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  • Rewrites

    2011
    Neil Simon

  • The Supremes

    2008
    Mark Ribowsky


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