Stelvio Massi was born on March 26, 1929 in Civitanova Marche, Macerata, Italy. Considered one of the most representatives of the Italian police films, Massi studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome and later joined the faculty of architecture, leaving there to enter the world of cinema. He began working as an assistant camera operator. He later became director of photography, working in this role in more than forty films.
Massi was a cinematographer on over a dozend Euro-westerns including: “In the Shadow of a Colt” (1966), “15 Scaffolds for a Killer” (1968), “The Price of Power” (1969) and “Bullet for a Stranger” (1971).
In 1973 he made his debut as a director with the Euro-western “Hallelujah to Vera Cruz”, using the alias Newman Rostel. In 1974 he directed three films: “Squadra volante”, his first detective film, starring Tomas Milian, “Macro” and “5 donne per l'assassino”. In 1975 he began the series “Mark il poliziotto”, starring Franco Gasparri. The series also includes “Mark il poliziotto spara per primo” and “Mark colpisce ancora”. In 1977 he returned to directing Milian in “La banda del trucido”, the second film in the series of “Er Monnezza”, started by Umberto Lenzi in 1976.
Between 1977 and 1980, Massi established a successful collaboration with actor Maurizio Merli, and directed six successful films. In 1978 he filmed the movie “Un poliziotto scomodo” partially filmed in Civitanova Marche, his hometown, to pay homage.
In the early 1980s, which marks the end of the golden age of the Italian police film, Massi directed Mario Merola dramatized in two films, “Torna” and “Guappa”, then Fabio Testi and Vittorio Mezzogiorno in two films about racing motorcycles and cars, “Speed Cross” and “Speed Driver”. In 1988 he also directed the movie “Mondo cane oggi - L'orrore continua”. In 1994 he directed his last film, “Il quinto giorno” .
Massi died March 26, 2004, the same day he turned 75 years old.
Today we remember Stelvio Massi on what would have been his 85th birthday.