Franco Di Giacomo was born on September 18, 1932 in Amatrice, Rieti, Umbria, Italy. By his own admission the cinematographer is a craftsman rather than an author and has never disdained the fact that he works for an honest commercial purpose. In 1983 he won the David di Donatello for “The Night of San Lorenzo” (1982) by Paolo and Vittorio Taviani. In the period 2000-2002 he was president of the Italian authors of the cinematography (AIC). He is the father of cameraman and cinematographer Francesco Di Giacomo.
Franco began working as an assistant and then as a camera operator, with masters such as Gianni Di Venanzo, Otello Martelli, Leone and, above all, Aldo Tonti. After covering all the stages of apprenticeship he made his debut as director of photography in 1970 with “Uccidete il vitello grasso e arrostitelo” by Salvatore Samperi, a film that, in many ways, foreshadowed his future path: that of a professional available to work with modest production budgets (but never at the expense of quality), at the service of talented young people more or less established and unconventional. Di Giacomo is always willing to combine poetry and the style of many directors with whom he has collaborated with his sensitivity, linked to the sense of landscape and care in the likelihood of settings. Constant element of his work is also the special attention in understanding the atmosphere's own natural light and its colors, or time to reproduce the brightness property of the Po valley (with Vittorio Storaro in The Spider's Stratagem, 1970 by Bernardo Bertolucci), or the dreary rationality of the great industrial cities of the North (Four Flies on Grey Velvet, 1971, Dario Argento), the enchantment of the lagoon in winter (eel 300 million, 1971, by Salvatore Samperi) as well as the luminous atmosphere of the South (Stardust, 1973, Alberto Sordi) or the soft melancholy of a Russia-inspired Chekhovian (OCI čërnye, 1987, OIC ciornie, Nikita Mikhalkov). Di Giacomo was a cameraman on Leone’s “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” (1966), “Once Upon a Time in the West” and was cinematographer on 1981’s “Buddy Goes West”. Today we celebrate Franco Di Giacomo’s 80th birthday.