Suburra is the adaptation of Giancarlo De Cataldo and Carlo Bonini’s novel and 2015 movie of the same name. The name is from a neighborhood in ancient Rome, where everyone met in secret, a very rough red-light district. At that time in Rome, as they still do today, criminals and politicians lived side by side and Suburra is still the emblem of this mingling of legitimate and hidden powers.
The six main characters in the new series directed by Michele Placido will be the same from the film and the plot will develop over a period of twenty days, summarized in ten episodes. The story begins with the official public announcement of the mayor’s resignation, which takes effect only twenty days later.
Rome goes through a very delicate time, as a new city plan has just been approved in which huge interests at stake; interests that are coveted by many politicians, the mafia, and the ubiquitous Vatican. In this setting politics and crime play a bigger role than the one played by any of the characters drawn up by De Cataldo and Bonini.
The Rome depicted in Suburra is composed of three worlds: the one of crime, linked to the Mafia; the one of politics, where corruption reigns supreme; and the one of the Vatican, a shadow that hangs over everything. These three worlds are connected by and intertwined with money, drugs and sex, which Placido identifies as the sources of energy that move the inner mechanisms of both powerful people and common carnal sinners.
About the possible presence of sex and violence scenes, Placido commented that there is no exploitation of sex for ratings’ sake, but the aim is “to show real aspects of the criminal world such as prostitution, even if it concerns a minor thrown into the sex trade to seduce a member of the clergy or a politician.”
The series is a co-production between Netflix and Rai – Italy’s national public broadcasting company – and it will star a completely Italian cast.
Ilona Catani Scarlett