Magazine
Latest Issue

The curious history of Dante on screen

From a silent classic to experimental shorts, there have been interesting efforts to capture the Divine Comedy on film

By Ian Thomson  

Dante in Domenico di Michelino's 15th-century portrayal

Surprisingly, given its immense popularity, Dante’s Divine Comedy has rarely been filmed. But there have been some interesting efforts. In the early 1970s, the Florentine director Franco Zeffirelli asked Dustin Hoffman to star as Dante Alighieri in a short film of the Inferno, the poem’s first book. The film was never made owing to lack of funds but the sketches and set designs are displayed now in the Zeffirelli Centre, which opened in Florence in 2017.

Zeffirelli had been influenced by the…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk

More From Prospect