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Tuscany a perfect film location

Exploring Tuscany visiting the main film location: Florence and Cortona.

Overflowing with familiar sights and picturesque landscapes, Tuscany has been used as a film location for many major films. The charm and appeal of Tuscany is quite unmatched, and several movies have not just been filmed, but were also centered upon the scenic cities of Tuscany, such as Cortona and Florence.

Bask Under the Tuscan Sun

One of these movies is Under the Tuscan Sun, a 2003 Audrey Wells direction based on the Frances Mayes novel of the same name. The film helped reveal the best sights and historical attractions that dotted the city of Florence. Some of the locations used in the film included the Piazza della Signoria and the Piazza della Republica.

The Piazza della Signoria  is a square in the form of an L, and is found in Florence, Tuscany. The plaza is a significant historical base, as it served as the former political center of the city. The square is flanked by several other must-see sights such as the Uffizi Gallery, the Uguccioni Palace, and several others.

Piazza della Republica  is another one of the many piazzas that dot Tuscany. The semi-circular area is ornamented at the center with the Fountain of the Naiads, which was commissioned back in 1870 and completed in 1888.

Under the Tuscan Sun was mostly set in Cortona, Arezzo, Tuscany, and starred Diane Lane. In the movie, the main character Frances Mayes travelled to Tuscany in the aftermath of a divorce. During the trip, she experiences the Tuscan life and finds new friends. Though a bit recent, the movie played a huge role in promoting the subtle but standout beauty of Cortona and the rest of Tuscany.

Live the Beautiful Life in Tuscany

But using Tuscany as a location for a film is not a new concept. After all, Tuscany has always had its grandeur and old-world appeal and has managed to retain it through the years. Thus, yet another iconic film, La Vita é Bella or Life is Beautiful, takes viewers through a tour of Cortona.

One of the scenes in the film was set in Cortona at the Teatro Signorelli, which is located in the Piazza Signorelli. The theatre holds regular presentations you can also enjoy during your Tuscan holiday. Outside, however, it is considered as one of Tuscany’s most distinctive landmarks. The theatre spills out to Piazza Signorelli. Both the piazza and the theatre has become important locations for Tuscany’s various festivals.

The La Vita e Bella is a 1997 film directed by Roberto Benigni. The film, which is shot in several different locations in Tuscany, centers around Guido Orefice, a Jewish man, and his quest to save his son’s life. The movie mixes romance and comedy both, and offers a good view on love and family values. However, it is perhaps the breathtaking locations used in the film that contributed to its unabashed success.

The film, which was made extra beautiful thanks to the beauty of Tuscany, eventually went on to win the Best Actor award for Benigni, the Best Picture award, the Best Foreign Language Film, the Best Original Screenplay, and several others.

Have Tea in Tuscany

Tuscany, however, is just plain overflowing with sights to see and places to visit. Some of the other popular places in Tuscany are Piazza Santa Maria Novella  and Piazza del Duomo, which both appeared in the1999 movie, Tea with Mussolini.

Piazza Santa Maria Novella is a world-renowned attraction in Florence. The square or plaza was featured in Tea with Mussolini and is famous for being one of the biggest historical squares found in the city. The square is a wide expanse of a grassy area dotted with a central fountain at the middle. It is also the location of the Santa Maria Novella church, a major church in Florence.

The Piazza del Duomo  has the classic features of a square, such as a wide expanse of grass dotted with several different monuments. The square’s history and style can be attributed to the medieval age, and the overall style of the square revolutionized the artistic world of Tuscany.

 Tea with Mussolini is practically a Tuscany guidebook as it takes viewers to several different Tuscan areas and popular attractions. The film, which starred popular musician and actress Cher, is partly autobiographical as it follows the life of Franco Zeffirelli. The film went on to win the 2000 BAFTA Awards, among some other awards, as well as some nominations.

 Enjoy the Picturesque Views of Tuscany

Finally, you can move to Piazza della Santissima Annunziata , one of the most distinct locations in Tuscany. It is dubbed as the most beautiful square found in

Florence, and it is scenically flanked by four buildings. These four buildings also happen to be significant monuments, which included the Santissima Annunziata church, Brunelleschi’s portico, and the Spedale degli Innocenti, among several others.

The scenic and panoramic image of the Piazza della Santissima Annunziata can also be enjoyed when you check out the 1986 film Room with a View. The film, which was directed by James Ivory and which starred Helena Bonham Carter, went on to win several awards, which included the Best Picture award, Best Supporting Actor for Daniel Day Lewis, Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Actress for Maggie Smith, and Best Supporting Actress for Judi Dench.

All in all, it was a film that gave a glimpse of Florence’s countryside life in contrast with its upper class scene.


Jane Maripose has travelled extensively in Italy for 15 years. She currently spends summers in her house in northern Tuscany and hopes to retire there. She has also been a teacher in California for 20 years. Jane is passionate about Italian food and culture and enjoys sharing her vast experience with others.
Jane’s Italy travels have included every region of Italy. She enjoys going to traditional festivals and learning the native folk dances, talking with the locals, and sampling the regional cuisine.
Jane has a bachelor’s degree in art history and is a credentialed educator. She studied Italian language and culture at the University for Foreigners in Perugia, Italy. Whilst studying in Ialy she undertook various cooking proficiency exams in the main Culinary academies
From Jane Maripose:
The passion for Italy, food and wine, music, have induced Jane to dedicate herself to this new activity which consists of writing independent articles based on her travel experiences, so that she can share this information with those who intend travelling to Italy on vacation.
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Article from

Visions of Tuscany is Produced and Presented by Alessandro Sorbello Tuscany (Italian Toscana) is one of the twenty regions of Italy. It has an area of 22990 km² and a population of about 3.6 million inhabitants. The regional capital is Florence. Tuscany is known for its landscapes and its artistic legacy. Six Tuscan localities have been made UNESCO protected sites: the historical center of Florence (1982), the historical center of Siena (1995), the square of the Cathedral of Pisa (1987), the historical center of San Gimignano (1990), the historical center of Pienza (1996) and the Val d’Orcia (2004). Geography – Tuscany is a region of Central Italy, bordering Emilia-Romagna to the north, Liguria to the north-west, Tyrrhenian Sea to the west, Umbria and Marche to the east, Lazio to the south-east. The territory is two thirds hilly and one fourth mountainous. The remainder is constituted of the plains that form the valley of the Arno River. Tuscany is divided into ten provinces: Arezzo, Florence (Firenze), Grosseto, Livorno, Lucca, Massa-Carrara, Pisa, Pistoia, Prato, Siena History – History of Tuscany oncello. An artistic movement of the 19th century, called Macchiaioli, chose this village, because of its beauty, as an inspirational source for their work. Apennine and Villanovan cultures. Apennine culture and Villanovan culture The pre-Etruscan history of the area in the late Bronze and Iron ages parallels that of the early Greeks. The Tuscan area
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