This highly anticipated sequel follows our four best friends as they take their book club to Italy for the fun girls trip they never had. When things go off the rails and secrets are revealed, their relaxing vacation turns into a once-in-a-lifetime cross-country adventure.
When screenwriters Bill Holderman and Erin Simms wrote and produced Book Club in 2017, they had no idea what a revolutionary act it would be. Based on a real-life incident when Holderman and Simms decided to send their mothers a copy of E.L. James’ then runaway best-selling S&M romance novel Fifty Shades of Grey, the most provocative thing about their first film—which costarred Hollywood legends Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen—wasn’t the frank sexual conversations the women had (although that was certainly fun to see). It was that a major studio movie could be made with four female leads over the age of 65.
So rare was this kind of ensemble that most of the women had never had the chance to act together, despite knowing one another for fifty years in some cases. “If you think about how movies are structured, so often there's just one leading lady and these four were always that one leading lady in the movie,” says Simms. “They even joke about all the onscreen male acting partners they've shared throughout the years, and despite having this shared experience of long, successful careers, it’s astonishing to think they never got to work together like this.”
And thanks to this off-screen appreciation of one another, their on-screen rapport was easy and immediate. “I think part of the deal is that we’re four extremely different people. We’re not like each other in some ways,” says Steenburgen. “But in the deepest ways, in terms of professionalism and kindness and love of acting and the craft of acting, there’s so many things we have in common. The chemistry just was there from day one.”
Earning more than $100 million at the box office, audiences clearly loved the rare treat of seeing these icons together, due in large part to the genuine good time they had making the film. “One of the biggest problems Bill had directing us is that he couldn't get us to shut up! We'd be waiting for the scene to be lit and we'd be talking and talking and talking. It was hard for him to get us to stop talking and come and do our work,” says Fonda. And Steenburgen agrees: “I think we would drive a lesser man crazy. We enjoy each other so much that there’s quite a lot of chatter. But we’re on time and we basically behave ourselves. We just can’t shut up, and Bill has to put up with that and he’s endlessly patient with us.”
But it wasn’t just the novelty of seeing its leads together that made Book Club work, it was the ways in which Holderman and Simms wrote these characters that felt special. Rather than pitting them against one another—which never felt true to Simms’ experience with her friends—they wanted to write about real female relationships and their stars responded to the material. “There’s this old myth that women are always competitive and there are cat fights. In my experience that's not really true,” says Fonda. “Of course there's some women who don't necessarily like other women but this movie shows women getting along and loving each other and helping each other, and that feels good.”
Steenburgen agrees and says the original film’s themes around deep female friendship resonated with her peers, too. “I’ve now had a few years to hear from people who’ve seen it, and the overwhelming reaction was that they loved seeing women that cared so deeply for each other who were there for each other. They were truthful with each other, but they weren’t mean to each other. So much of what you see depicted on-screen today can be about cruelty or about one-ups-womanship, and this is more about true friendships. I have decades-long friendships and they’re meaningful to me. I think people really liked seeing that.”
Bergen also appreciated that the characters were fully realized, three-dimensional women and not caricatures: I loved that my character was a Federal Court Judge, that she was really a woman of substance, a woman who was very intelligent with a distinguished career. But also a woman who still relied on her friends to give her a release and support from the pressures of her work. And that she also had a sense of humor underneath it all.”
It didn’t hurt that the movie was as hilarious as it was heartwarming. The story follows four friends whose lives each change dramatically after reading Fifty Shades of Grey, when they all decide to go after things they’ve never considered before. Hotel magnate Vivian (Fonda) allows herself to get serious with a man after a lifetime of zero commitments; recently widowed Diane (Keaton) builds a life outside of the needs of her husband and children; Federal Judge Sharon (Bergen) pursues a personal life outside of work; and Carol (Steenburgen) gets to the bottom of intimacy issues in her otherwise happy marriage.
It was a film that gave each of the actresses equally rich backstories and resolutions, but it left room for more: “The first one was sort of about each of our four stories and we only got together in scenes when we met around the book club. We needed more time together!” says Fonda.
The idea for a sequel came almost immediately–before the first film was released in fact, and not from Holderman or Simms. “Candice and I hatched this idea on a trip to Las Vegas when we were promoting the first film at CinemaCon,” Steenburgen remembers. Simms asked the women where they would most want to set their next film. “Candice and I looked at each other and in unison said, ‘Italy!’ We never looked back from that, and I always reminded Bill and Erin, ‘Don’t forget, it has to be in Italy!’” Keaton was eager to get back at it, too. She noted working on Book Club: The Next Chapter was a great experience because she “was already in the groove with our director and I really enjoyed everybody who worked on the first, especially the other actresses who are pretty spectacular,” she says.
With the location settled on well before any deals were made, the screenwriters faced the challenge of figuring out a worthwhile emotional journey to put these women on. “As a writer, you want to say that it was super easy, that the sequel wrote itself, that the story came to us and then just flowed, “ says Holderman. “I think because of the pressure that we put on ourselves to make a sequel, we didn't want to do one just because the first film did well. We were hesitant to even go down the road until we felt like we had a story that we were genuinely excited about.”
It wouldn’t be a Book Club movie without a novel to center their story on, and this time out Simms and Holderman chose Paulo Coelho’s odyssey of self-discovery, The Alchemist, after being drawn to its central themes of questioning fate, taking destiny into your own hands and finding opportunity in life’s challenges. “We loved the idea that sometimes by putting yourself out there and opening yourself up to incredible situations, things happen,” says Holderman. “Maybe you get your luggage stolen or maybe you miss the train. You can look at those moments like, ‘Oh my gosh, I can't believe this happened’ or you can embrace that if you're going to be adventurous, there are potential downfalls, but that's part of the experience, that’s part of the adventure.”
Simms puts an even finer point on how The Alchemist relates to these women at this stage of their lives: “The point of all of this is that you don't have to get old. Yes, physically your age goes up but you can remain young if you remain interested and interesting. Your life can always feel youthful, but you have to keep learning new things, you have to keep caring, you have to keep wanting new experiences.”
Holderman and Simms were adamant that the sequel didn’t fall into the trap of making their characters appear clueless about how to cope with changing times or resigned to letting life pass them by. Instead, the women of Book Club: The Next Chapter take chances—and make mistakes with abandon. “I'm almost 85 and I like playing older women who still have a lot of pizazz in them because I think it makes younger people less frightened of getting old,” says Fonda. “It gives women hope that there is a life after 60 and it can be pretty great.”
The action of the film kicks off as pandemic isolation lifts, and Steenburgen’s Carol reminds her friends about a trip to Italy they all vowed to take together in their 20s before life got in the way. Slowly but surely, each of the women sign on. Leaving their romantic, familial and career entanglements behind, these women are once again allowed to focus on themselves–alongside the friends who have been with them for most of their lives.
“Bill and Erin didn’t write a movie where all we talk about is how old we are and how we can’t work our phones. They wrote something that’s about much more,” explains Steenburgen. “It’s about facing this moment where more of your life is behind you than ahead of you, and what that means to your soul, the questions that causes, and how that affects your friendships, your love life, and the desire to experience things intensely—because you don’t wanna miss it!”
It was a level of care not lost on Fonda: “Bill has a good sense of what he wants and is very kind and patient with his actors, and his partner Erin, who also co-wrote the script, the two of them together really make you feel safe and seen and cherished,” she says.
For Keaton, beyond reuniting with her trusted director (“Bill’s the reason I’m here and I’m eternally grateful to him for creating all of this,” she says), getting to work in Italy was what made the sequel truly special. “Can you believe we got to be there for two-and-a-half months? I’m ready to move! It was stunning, just stunning to live there. If you have any opportunity for me in Italy, I’m happy. It’s full of incredible people and places that you can’t imagine,” the actress gushes.
And what better place than Italy to take a long-awaited girls’ trip and turn it into a bachelorette weekend when Vivian unexpectedly finds herself engaged just weeks before they’re set to take off. While they may be saying goodbye to Vivian’s single days, the vacation also gives each of the women the opportunity to reconnect with their pasts and question their futures, close the loop on some things and open their hearts to others—and even spend the night in jail. Along the way, much pasta is eaten, more wine is drunk, at least one of them ends up in a wedding dress, and they all find adventure in Italy.
Being true to their word about bringing the cast of Book Club to Italy was always appealing to Holderman and Simms—if not entirely easy. Holderman remembers the moment in Las Vegas when the women hatched the plan. “They ran in from their flight looking fantastic and excited and they go, ‘Hey, we're making a sequel and it's going to be in Italy! and I was like, ‘Great!’ and then Erin and I looked at each other like how the hell are we going to come up with the story that gets them there?!”
“It did put us into a box of having to figure out the Italy part of it,” says Simms. “We didn't really have to, we could have changed it, but there was something about the idea of Italy that we loved, so we just never gave up on it.”
To achieve the look of Book Club: The Next Chapter, Holderman enlisted a team of two Stefanos–production designer Stefano Maria Ortolani and costume designer Stefano De Nardis, who adroitly maintained the original film’s chic and cozy feel and infused it with the escapism and sexiness of their native Italy.
“Having these Italian department heads and crew who not only know their country and their city but also love it, we were always asking them, ‘How can we celebrate Rome even more? Tell us where else we should go, what other streets we should film!’ We wanted to celebrate all that is in Italy and put it on the screen,” Holderman says. “And getting back out there after we've all been living through this incredibly confining moment in history, we really wanted the look of the movie to feel expansive. (The director couldn’t help but be inspired by shooting portions of the film at the legendary Cinecittà Studios just across from the iconic Stage 5, where Federico Fellini shot La Dolce Vita, Amarcord, and 8 ½. “It was pretty special to walk out of our stage every day and feel the history of that studio, says Holderman.
Ortolani’s job was a complicated one: to make a movie that gave viewers a tantalizing look at all the sights of Italy while avoiding any obvious sites or shots. “What we tried to do was not to make it so touristic, while still using gorgeous sites like the ancient Castello della Castelluccia,” he says of the location used for several key scenes. “We were asked to find as much stuff around Rome as possible and you’d be amazed by the places we found, places I’ve never shot at before,” he says. “An antique shop just off of Via dei Coronari, a very central street in Rome, that feels more elegant than where tourists might go; a 16th century villa just outside of the city. We captured the romance of winding side roads, too.”
One of the most special places to shoot was the eternal city of Venice. “The villa in Venice had really, really, really amazing gardens, we used the speedboats in the city’s canals,” Ortolani says, “and all of its traditions, its beautiful light—audiences outside of Italy will want to come and visit, I can promise you that!”
And as a former fashion designer, De Nardis couldn't believe his good fortune to be dressing the stars of Book Club: The Next Chapter in the finest fashions Italy has to offer. “The four of them, at different stages during their life, have all been very important fashion icons. It was really the opportunity of a lifetime,” he says. “I wanted to create a specific world for each of them and Bill and Erin and these actresses let me do that.”
Each had a clear vision of who their characters were and how they’d dress, which made them dreamy, if a bit intimidating, collaborators for De Nardis. “Jane knew perfectly what suited her best and what she wanted to do—a specific shoulder line, a specific waistline. Diane, I was most terrified to meet because she’s such a style icon and has unbelievable taste in everything. Candice is so sophisticated with the most fabulous taste, and Mary is just this amazing bohemian beauty.”
Rather than shying away from the realities of Covid, the beginning of the film takes place in the middle of the pandemic, when these characters–and many viewers—used virtual book clubs as a way of keeping sane and connected. “You don’t take anybody for granted anymore because you’ve been locked up in a house without many people that you love,” Steenburgen says. “And so the script really starts there, which I think is why all of us relate to it so much.”
Story-wise, it’s also the pandemic that really sets the voyage to Italy in motion. When Don Johnson’s character Arthur proposes to Vivian (Fonda), their idea for a vacation turns into a bachelorette to celebrate their longtime single friend finding the love of her life–again!—in retirement. “He proposed to Vivian in their 20s, and Vivian turned him down because she had no intention to get married. But forty years later, after a life full of freedom and lovers and not being pinned down, we reconnect and the spark is still there. So when Covid hits, she’s locked in his apartment with him in New York and what she discovers is, this isn't so bad! And he convinces me to marry him,” Fonda explains.
What was once a relaxing weekend getaway becomes an international road trip that follows the women on planes, trains and automobiles all over the gorgeous countryside before settling down in Rome. “Every night that I went home, I just thought, I can’t believe how alive this city is! It’s just people, vespas, everybody going and coming all the time. When you walk in the streets, you just feel great vitality,” says Bergen.
It’s a spoiler to explain how and why Andy Garcia and Craig T. Nelson make their way to Italy to reunite with their paramours played by Keaton and Steenburgen, but Bergen is quick to point out that their roles are more than just set dressing: “I don’t want to demean the guys by just writing them off as good looking because they’re all wonderful actors!” she says.
“Craig and I first worked together on 2009’s The Proposal with Sandra Bullock, Ryan Reynolds and the great Betty White, and we loved each other then. So I was so thrilled when they told me they’d cast him as my husband in Book Club,” says Steenburgen. “Every rehearsal, every moment I spent with him was fun. He’s an amazing actor and just a great human being.”
Fonda and Johnson have an even longer off-screen relationship. “I've known Don since the early 1970s when I started an anti-war organization called The Entertainment Industry for Peace and Justice. This gorgeous guy would come around meetings and while I think he was against the war, he was really looking for girlfriends,” she says with a laugh. “He was and remains very charismatic, very professional, and very good to look at and work with.
Garcia returns in the sequel as Keaton’s boyfriend Mitchell, who she now lives with. “I love Andy Garcia, he’s really special and I got to kiss him a lot,” Keaton says. “I know he didn't enjoy it, but I did, and I don't care, torture him! I asked for as many takes as I could get, as many as they would allow!” Garcia denies it was anything but a true delight to reunite with his old friend: “I love Diane, I love working with her, and when they sent me the script and it said it’s shot in here in Tuscany it was such nice full circle because I actually met Diane doing The Godfather 3 in Rome in 1989/1990.
In addition to Garcia, Johnson and Nelson, there are two new men in the mix, though one of them is technically a blast from the past. Vincent Riotta, best known for his charming role in Under the Tuscan Sun, returns to familiar soil playing the one who got away from Steenburgen’s Carol when Gianni came to America for cooking school and then went back to Rome.
And worry not for Bergen’s Sharon, who appears in some of Book Club: The Next Chapter’s most memorably hilarious scenes opposite Hugh Quarshie, whose character Ousmane is determined to show her an authentic and memorable evening in Italy.
But still, the most important thing in the franchise remains the same: “I hope fans take away the value of friendship, in our case the importance of female friendship and the comfort of it and what that gives people,” says Bergen. “And I hope they enjoy the scenery! Italy’s so gorgeous and the guys are pretty great looking, too!”
“Basically, we’re like four young girls together half the time,” giggles Steenburgen “These wonderful friendships have really grown over time. We text each other and call each other and check in on each other, have dinners at each other’s houses. It’s been this unbelievable gift to my life that I know these women.”
Jane Fonda on Diane Keaton:
“There is nobody like Diane Keaton. She has a unique style of dressing, of acting, of doing Instagram, everything about her is unique and watching her work, watching her bring her spontaneity and kookiness to the character of Diane is really fun.”
Jane Fonda on Candice Bergen:
“Candy, as everybody knows, has a real wit. It’s a very dry, very special kind of humor, which is what made Murphy Brown so successful, and she brings it to this role. It's very, very funny. She's the only one of us that isn't somehow linked to a specific man but she does more sexy stuff in the movie than anybody else.”
Jane Fonda on Mary Steenburgen:
“Mary is the big discovery for me. I didn't really know her before and I will have to say that I've fallen in love with her. She's one of the most magical people that I have ever met in my life. There is something about her that is deeply good and funny. She loves to giggle, she writes music, she plays the accordion, she can tapdance. She's different than anybody I have ever known and we're going to remain best friends for the rest of my life.”
Mary Steenburgen on Jane Fonda:
“Jane is just, well, she’s too good of a friend for me to call her my mentor, but in many emotional ways in life, I learn from her, and she’s the most truthful person I’ve ever met. Sometimes she’s too truthful for her own good but she is glorious. She’s amazing. And there are moments that I’m acting with her, and she goes from being my friend to suddenly I’m looking into the blue eyes of this icon, Jane Fonda. And I’m like, Whoa! How am I here?! I love her very much.”
Mary Steenburgen on Diane Keaton:
“Diane is a wild, free, unbelievably sweet artist. She doesn’t have any molecule in her body that’s not artistic from the way she expresses herself in clothes, to the way she expresses herself in the design of her home. She and I both studied at the Neighborhood Playhouse and she was a few years before me, and I used to see her photograph on the wall when I would go to school everyday. And I used to think at eighteen years old, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if I got to work with her someday?’ And it was all these years until Book Club when I got to, but it’s definitely been worth it.”
Mary Steenburgen on Candice Bergen:
“Candice is hilarious and naughty and when I look at her, half the time I see a really naughty twelve year old girl. I see that girl in her all the time. She’s moving and brilliant and beautiful and so good at friendship.”
Candice Bergen on Diane Keaton:
“Diane brings so much to the table, I am in awe of Diane. She brings a total commitment to her character, to anything she does. She brings detail, she brings an aliveness and a vitality to it that makes it alive. She makes every character surprising and witty and moving and anything she does she makes it very special.”
Candice Bergen on Jane Fonda:
“Jane brings more than any of us. She brings piles of research. I said, you prepared all of that, too? She has a level of commitment that’s much higher than most actors that one works with.”
Candice Bergen on Mary Steenburgen:
“She’s the only person I know who plays an accordion. She just kind of has these corners that you don’t expect like she’s a music composer, and she has a tremendous warmth and vitality and it’s so lovely to work with someone that warm and kind and funny.”
Diane Keaton on Jane Fonda:
“Well, Jane Fonda's astonishing. I've watched Jane Fonda all my life, so when I have had the opportunity to work with her— she's incredible. That was an honor.”
Diane Keaton on Candice Bergen:
“Candice Bergen is insanely funny, insanely funny. There's nobody like her. You don't know what she's gonna come up with, ever!”
Diane Keaton on Mary Steenburgen:
“Mary Steenburgen is amazing. Did you hear her new song? Mary wrote a song and it’s really great. Mary is, of course, so damn charming in this movie. She's the best of the best.”
Diane Keaton (Diane)
Since her screen debut in Lovers and Other Strangers, Diane Keaton has proven to be an extremely versatile actress, director and producer. Her acting career spans over twenty-five movie greats, including The Godfather Trilogy, Looking for Mr. Goodbar, Annie Hall, for which she received a best actress Academy Award, and the smash hits Father of the Bride and The First Wives Club. Ms. Keaton also received Academy Award nominations for her role in the film Something’s Gotta Give, Reds and for her poignant performance in Marvin’s Room. Thus, making history as the only actress to have had an Academy Award nomination once in every decade.
Ms. Keaton has also received praise as a director, beginning with her work on Heaven and culminating with the critically acclaimed Unstrung Heroes.
Ms. Keaton won the Golden Globe for her performance in Something’s Gotta Give, written and directed by Nancy Meyers, and co-starring, Jack Nicholson. She also received National Board of Review award for this performance.
As a producer, she is proud to have worked with Gus Van Sant on his critically acclaimed film, Elephant, which won the Palm d’Or at the Cannes film festival. She has starred in and executive produced the Lifetime TV movie, On Thin Ice, which dealt with a mother’s methamphetamine addiction for which she won a Prism Award for her compelling performance. She directed and executive produced, the TV pilot Pasadena for Fox Television. She has also directed and co-starred in Hanging Up, with Meg Ryan, Lisa Kudrow and Walter Matthau, and contributed performances to The Other Sister, directed by Garry Marshall. She starred in Because I Said So and Mad Money opposite Queen Latifah and Katie Holmes.
She edited a book which showcases her collection of amateur clown paintings, for Lookout and Powerhouse books, entitled Clown Paintings. Her fifth published book with Rizzoli is titled Casa Romantica.
Shifting effortlessly from comedy to drama and back again, Diane Keaton continues to captivate and delight her audiences with every project she devotes herself to.
Jane Fonda (Vivian)
Jane Fonda is a two-time Academy Award-winning actor (Best Actress in 1971 for Klute and in 1978 for Coming Home), producer, author, activist, and fitness guru. Her career has spanned over 50 years, accumulating a body of film work that includes over 50 films and crucial work on behalf of political causes such as women’s rights, Native Americans, and the environment. She is a seven-time Golden Globe® winner and was honored with the Cecil B. DeMille Award in 2021, Stanley Kubrick Excellence in Film Award as part of BAFTA’s Britannia Awards in 2019, AFI Life Achievement Award winner in 2014, and Honorary Palme d’Or honoree in 2007.
Fonda most recently starred in the seventh and final season of Grace & Frankie, which is Netflix’s longest running original series. It is for her work on the series that she received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series in 2017. 2023 marks a triumphant return to the big screen with three films being released. First she appeared in the highly anticipated 80 For Brady opposite Tomlin, Sally Field, and Rita Moreno released by Paramount Pictures. Then came Paul Weitz’s Moving On for Roadside Attractions in which Fonda stars opposite Tomlin. Finally, she will be reunited with Diane Keaton, Mary Steenburgen, and Candice Bergen for Focus Features’ Book Club 2, which is slated to be released on May 10. Other recent notable film credits include Jane Fonda in Five Acts, a documentary for HBO chronicling her life and activism. The film premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special in 2019.
Fonda continues to lead the charge on Fire Drill Fridays, the national movement to protest government inaction on climate change she started in October 2019 in partnership with Greenpeace USA. In 2022 she launched the Jane Fonda Climate PAC, which is focused on defeating political allies of the fossil fuel industry. Her latest book, “What Can I Do? My Path From Climate Despair To Action” details her personal journey with the movement and provides solutions for communities to combat the climate crisis. Jane also notably celebrated her 80th birthday by raising $1 million for each of her nonprofits, Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Power & Potential and The Women’s Media Center.
Candice Bergen (Sharon)
Candice Bergen shined as the feisty eponymous broadcast news legend of the critically acclaimed CBS comedy series Murphy Brown, for which she received five Emmy Awards and two Golden Globe Awards over the 10 year run. She served as an executive producer when she returned to that iconic role in the CBS revival in the fall of 2018. She starred that same year in the box office hit The Book Club alongside Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton, and Mary Steenburgen and stars alongside the same cast in its upcoming sequel Book Club: The Next Chapter – out this May. Her most recent work includes the HBO Max film Let Them All Talk with Meryl Streep and Diane Wiest directed by Steven Soderbergh and As Sick As They Made Us with Dustin Hoffman directed by Mayim Bialik.
Film credits include Starting Over, for which she received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress, Gandhi, Rich and Famous, Home Again, Sweet Home Alabama, and Miss Congeniality among many others. Additional television credits include Boston Legal, which garnered her two Emmy nominations as well as Golden Globe and SAG nomination. Broadway credits include the original production of Hurly Burly, Gore Vidal’s 2012 production of The Best Man, and Love Letters opposite Alan Alda.
Bergen’s autobiography, Knock Wood, was released in 1984 to critical acclaim and became a New York Times bestseller, as did its sequel, A Fine Romance published in 2015. In 2017, Candice created Bergen Bags, a personal customization business for which she hand paints renderings of beloved images onto handbags. That business has been expanded to include designs on apparel and accessories at www.candicebergenartstuff. All proceeds are donated to charity. Follow her on Instagram @bergenbags.
Mary Steenburgen (Carol)
Mary Steenburgen is an Academy Award and Golden Globe winning actress best known for her work in the films “Melvin and Howard,” "Parenthood," “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape,” "Philadelphia," “Stepbrothers,” and “Book Club” and television shows “Justified,” “Orange is the New Black,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and “The Last Man on Earth.” Most recently, Steenburgen starred for two seasons as Maggie Clarke in NBC’s musical television sensation “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist”.
Upcoming, Steenburgen will star in Focus Features “Book Club: The Next Chapter” opposite Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, and Candice Bergen. In addition to starring in the film, Steenburgen (along with Troy Verges and Caitlyn Smith) wrote "Anywhere With You" for the end credits of the film and she and her three co-stars recorded the vocals. The film will be released in theaters on Mother’s Day weekend – May 12, 2023.
Mary is a songwriter for Universal Music Publishing Group. Along with co-writers Troy Verges and Caitlyn Smith, Mary wrote the acclaimed song "This Is Christmas" for HBO's "Holiday Harmony" and "Northstar" for Roku's original film "Zoey's Extraordinary Christmas". Mary was shortlisted for an Academy Award for Best Original Song for "Glasgow (No Place Like Home)", featured in the film Wild Rose. "Glasgow" received the Critics' Choice Award and the Hollywood Critics Association Award for Best Original Song.
Andy Garcia (Mitchell)
Andy Garcia has been one of Hollywood’s most respected leading actors for decades. Andy most recently wrapped a role opposite Chris Evans, Emily Blunt, and Catherine O'Hara in David Yates' PAIN HUSTLERS for Netflix. Prior to that, he starred in HBOMax’s reimagining of FATHER OF THE BRIDE where he was the centerpiece of the film and served as a producer. On the television side, Andy was recently seen starring in Rebel for ABC, and on Amazon’s MODERN LOVE based off NPR’s popular podcast Modern Love. He will next be seen starring alongside Sly Stallone and Jason Statham in the 4th installment of the successful Expendables franchise.
He has appeared in a wide array of films with exceptional performances including MAMA MIA: HERE WE GO AGAIN and BOOK CLUB. Garcia also starred alongside Clint Eastwood and Bradley Cooper in THE MULE. Additionally, he co-starred in HBO movie “My Dinner with Herve” as Ricardo Montalban and in the revenge thriller “Bent” directed by Bobby Moresco.
Other films completed include GEOSTORM, TRUE MEMOIRS OF AN INTERNATIONAL ASSASSIN with Kevin James, and Columbia’s remake of GHOSTBUSTERS. He also co-starred in the HBO series BALLERS with Dwayne Johnson, and the critically acclaimed film CITY ISLAND. Also an award winning actor, Garcia received Academy Award and Golden Globe Award nominations for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Francis Ford Coppola’s THE GODFATHER: PART III in 1990. He later received an Emmy Award nomination and his second Golden Globe nomination for his portrayal of legendary Cuban trumpeter Arturo Sandoval in HBO’s 2000 biopic “For Love or Country: The Arturo Sandoval Story.” As the executive producer of the telefilm, Garcia also earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Made for Television Movie. The film was Golden Globe-nominated for Best Miniseries or Made for Television Movie. In addition, Garcia produced the movie’s soundtrack and the Emmy-winning score, featuring the music of Arturo Sandoval. The film won two ALMA Awards as Best Made For TV Movie or Miniseries and as Outstanding Latin Cast in a Made for TV Movie or Miniseries.
Under Garcia’s production company, CineSon Productions, he made his directorial debut with the documentary concert film “Cachao…ComoSu Ritmo No Hay.” He also wrote, directed and starred in THE LOST CITY which earned him two Imagine awards for Best Director and Best Film Award as well as an Alma Award nomination Best Director.
Don Johnson (Arthur)
Don Johnson, the award-winning actor probably best known as Det. Sonny Crockett on the hugely successful iconic TV series, Miami Vice is one of the stars who defined the 1980’s. The iconic series was executive produced by the four-time Oscar nominated director Michael Mann. Johnson earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series in 1985 and won a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a TV Series in 1986 and 1987.
Born in Flat Creek, Missouri he began acting in the early 70’s. He studied at the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco where he made his professional debut in Your Own Thing a rock musical modeled after William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. He went on to make five pilots for NBC, all of which were rejected. It is not common knowledge that the young actor got his big break by starring in the controversial off-Broadway play Fortune and Men’s Eyes which was directed by and starred Sal Mineo.
Also in the 70’s he co-wrote songs with Dickey Betts from the Allman Brothers Band several of which are on their album.
While shooting The Harrad Experiment he met a very young Melanie Griffith, with whom he has a daughter, actress Dakota Johnson.
During the run of Miami Vice, Johnson starred in the critically acclaimed TV film The Long Hot Summer in 1985 as well as starring opposite Susan Sarandon in the feature film Sweet Hearts Dance in 1988. When Vice ended Johnson focused on his film career with Dead Band, The Hot Spot and Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man. His film work has given Johnson the opportunity to work with legendary filmmakers like John Frankenheimer, Sidney Lumet and Dennis Hopper.
Other film credits include Cold in July, The Other Woman, Brawl in Cell Block 99, The Book Club.
In 1995 Johnson co-wrote a two hour movie with his neighbor, Hunter S. Thompson. While the movie was not picked up, CBS bought the story and he returned to television in 1996 with the cop show Nash Bridges as creator and producer.
In 2016, Johnson appeared in several episodes of the Netflix series A Series of Unfortunate Events as well as appearing in the Sky Television series Sick Note.
Other recent projects include Watchmen, the Damon Lindelof series for HBO as well as the highly successful film Knives Out.
Johnson has just completed a starring role in the Jeremy Saulnier film Rebel Ridge as well as reprising his role in the upcoming film Book Club 2: The Next Chapter.
Johnson is married to Kelley Phleger since 1999 and they have three children in addition to son Jesse Johnson and daughter Dakota.
Craig T. Nelson (Bruce)
Emmy Award-winner Craig T. Nelson is an actor, writer, director, and producer.
Nelson continues his guest starring role on CBS TV’s “Young Sheldon” season 6/2022-2023. He also guest starred in seasons 3, 4 and 5. He portrays coach ‘Dale Ballard’, little league baseball coach and owner of the local sporting goods store. ‘Ballard’ has been romancing Meemaw (Annie Potts) and employing her grandson Georgie and son-in-law George.
Nelson returns in his role of “Bruce Colby”, husband of “Carol Colby” portrayed by Mary Steenburgen in “Book Club: The Next Chapter” for Focus Features. Joining them is the rest of the original cast, Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen, Don Johnson and Andy Garcia. The highly anticipated sequel follows our four best friends as they take their book club to Italy for the fun girls’ trip they never had. When things go off the rails and secrets are revealed, their relaxing vacation turns into a once-in-a-lifetime cross-country adventure. The film was shot on location in Rome and will be in theaters May 12th.
He portrayed ‘Zeek Braverman,’ the gregarious patriarch of the very large and colorful Braverman family on NBC’s critically acclaimed, “Parenthood” for six seasons. Nelson starred as Jack Mannion on “The District,” a drama that was inspired by the experiences of real-life police crime fighter Jack Maple. Mannion was an equal opportunity antagonist and champion of the underdog who became the new police chief of Washington, D.C., a city in desperate need of a shakedown. “The District” aired for four seasons, 2000-2004. Nelson also served as co-executive producer and directed episodes.
In 1997, he completed his eighth and final season on “Coach,” starring as Hayden Fox. He directed numerous episodes and received three Emmy nominations: 1990, 1991 and 1992 for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, which led to a win for the 1991-1992 season. He has also been honored by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association with four Golden Globe nominations.
Upon completion of his successful series “Coach,” Nelson had a chance to vary his projects, including making his Broadway debut as Nat Miller in Eugene O'Neill's “Ah, Wilderness!” at the Vivian Beaumont Theater/Lincoln Center in the spring of 1998. The show played to rave reviews during its limited run.
Nelson was born in Spokane, WA on April 4. He has always been interested in music, playing drums and guitar through high school and college. He attended the University of Arizona and studied at the Oxford Theater in Los Angeles.
He began his career as a writer/performer on the “Lohman and Barkley Show,” and his talent as a writer garnered him a Los Angeles Emmy Award. Nelson’s writing credits include “The Alan King Special” and “The Tim Conway Show.”
Nelson’s guest-star appearances include: Four-episode arc on Netflix’s hit “Grace and Frankie,” “Hawaii 5-0,” series finale of “Monk,” a three-episode arc on “CSI:NY,” four episodes of “My Name is Earl,” “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” and “Private Benjamin.” He starred in the critically acclaimed series, “Call To Glory” and directed its final episode. His television movies include Showtime's award-winning “Dirty Pictures,” NBC’s “Take Me Home Again” with Kirk Douglas, “Rage,” “Toast of Manhattan,” “Alex: The Life of a Child,” “The Switch,” and “The Fire Next Time” and HBO’s “The Josephine Baker Story.” Mini-series include: NBC’s “To Serve and Protect” and “Creature.” He co-hosted with Paula Zahn on the television special “The Ultimate Driving Challenge.”
When one adds writing, directing, and producing to his list of credits, it's no mystery as to why he formed Family Tree Productions to develop and produce motion picture and television projects. A special project for Nelson was the television movie “Ride with the Wind.” The story revolves around a young boy, and it is one of hope, discovery and recovery. It was scripted by Nelson, who also served as executive producer under the banner of his Family Tree Productions, in association with Hearst Entertainment.
In 2004 audiences got to “hear” a new side of the man. He voiced Bob Paar, or as he was known in his superhero days, Mr. Incredible, in the Oscar winning Walt Disney Picture/Pixar Animation Studios “The Incredibles. In 2018 he reprised his role of Bob Parr/Mr. Incredible and once again was joined by Holly Hunter, Helen Parr/Elastigirl and Samuel L. Jackson as Frozone. The sequel found Bob Parr/Mr. Incredible at home with Violet, Dash and Jack-Jack navigating the day to day heroics of daily life while Helen Parr/Elastigirl suited up once again to help save the world.
Feature film credits include: “Book Club” starring with Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen, “Gold” ‘Kenny Wells’ (Matthew McConaughey) father. “Get Hard” with Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart, “The Company Men,” written and directed by John Wells, also starring Tommy Lee Jones, Ben Affleck, Kevin Costner and Chris Cooper, “The Proposal’ with Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds, “Blades of Glory” with Will Ferrell, “The Family Stone” with Sarah Jessica Parker and Diane Keaton, “The Skulls,” “All Over Again,” “Devil's Advocate,” in which he co-starred with Al Pacino and Keanu Reeves, “Ghosts of Mississippi” with Whoopi Goldberg, directed by Rob Reiner, “I'm Not Rappaport,” co-starring Walter Matthau and Ossie Davis, “Poltergeist I” and “Poltergeist II - The Other Side” (he contributed to the screenplay), “Action Jackson,” “The Killing Fields,” “Silkwood,” and “The Osterman Weekend.”
He became enthralled with the art of auto racing as a participant in the 1991 Toyota Pro Celebrity Grand Prix. He formed Screaming Eagles Racing Enterprise in the spring of 1992 and not only owned the team but drove as well. The team competed in the American City Racing League and the International Motor Sports Association's World Sports Car series. Nelson raced in the Porsche Super Cup Series, May 1994, Monte Carlo, Monaco. The team was disbanded in 1998. The following year he was a guest driver, in a Corvette, in the 100 BF Goodrich Tires Trans Am Series Race at Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, and in the Tenneco Detroit Grand Prix.
Besides his love of show business and music, Nelson’s passion for golf is also well-documented. He was a champion amateur golfer in high school and college and has been known to shoot in the low 70s. In the December 2007 issue of Golf Digest, he was ranked 4th out of 100 TV and film stars.
Nelson has three children, eight grandchildren and four great grandchildren. He and his wife, Doria, make their home in Los Angeles.
Giancarlo Giannini (Police Chief)
Giancarlo Giannini is an Oscar-nominated Italian actor, director and multilingual dubber who made international reputation for his leading roles in Italian films as well as for his mastery of numerous dialects.
On April 2023 he has received the Star on the Walk of Fame.
He was born on August 1, 1942, in La Spezia, Italy. For ten years young Giannini lived and studied in Naples, Italy, earning his degree in electronics. At the age of 18 he enrolled in the Academy of Dramatic Art D'Amico in Rome, making his stage acting debut there. His stage credits included performances in contemporary Italian plays, as well, as in Italian productions of Shakespeare's plays 'Romeo and Juliet' and 'Midsummer's Night Dream'. In 1965, Giannini made his debut on television starring as David Copperfield in TV mini-series made by RAI, the Italian National TV company. He made his big screen debut in Libido (1965) a Freudian psychological thriller. Since 1966, Giannini has been in a successful life-long collaboration with the legendary Italian woman-director Lina Wertmüller who made several award-winning films with Giannini as a male lead. He appears as peasant Tonino who prepares to assassinate dictator Mussolini in Film d'amore e d'anarchia, ovvero 'stamattina alle 10 in via dei Fiori nella nota casa di tolleranza...' (1973), as a sailor in ironic comedy Travolti da un insolito destino nell'azzurro mare d'agosto (1974), and as a survivor of a concentration camp in the Oscar-nominated Pasqualino Settebellezze (1975). Giannini stars as a Jewish musician who is arrested by the Nazis in Faßbinder's masterpiece Lili Marleen (1981).
Giannini also made a reputation for dubbing numerous international stars in films released on the Italian market, such as Jack Nicholson, Al Pacino, Michael Douglas, Dustin Hoffman, Gerard Depardieu and Ian McKellen to name just a few. He received a compliment from Stanley Kubric for his dubbing of Jack Nicholson in the Italian version of 'The Shining'.
Giannini's fluency in English and his mastery of dialects has brought him a number of supporting roles in Hollywood productions, such as A Walk in the Clouds (1995), Hannibal (2001), The Dark (2002), and Man on Fire (2004), among many other.
He is billed as Rene Mathis in the 21st James Bond film Casino Royale (2006).
Mr Giannini in 2007 was the lead of “Milano-Palermo -the return” directed by Mr C. Fragasso and during the periods 2007/2014 has participated to the following films:
Quantum Of Solace, directed by M. Foster, “La Bella Società”, directed by Mr G.Cugno, “Ameriqua” directed by M. Bellone / G. Consonni, Oma in Roma directed by Tomy Wigand, Promakhos directed by John Voorheesand Video for format “La Magna Grecia-Il mito delle Origini – Il grande racconto dei Greci in Occidente”, artistic director: Emir Kusturica.
In the years 2011/2012 Mr Giannini has directed himself in the film“ The Gambler who wouldn’t die”.
Most recently Mr Giancarlo Giannini was part of the cast of the following Productions:
Romanzo Famigliare – directed by F. Archibugi, Tulips: Liefde, Eer en een Fiets- directed by M. Van Diem, The catcher was a spy – directed by Ben Lewin and Notti Magiche – directed by P. Virzì, I Fratelli De Filippo, directed by Sergio Rubini (2020), Gianni Schicchi, by Damiano Michieletto, Cabrini, by Alejandro Monteverde and Book Club 2, directed by Bill Holderman.
Hugh Quarshie (Ousmane)
Hugh Quarshie was born in Accra, Ghana before emigrating to the UK at the age of three. He attended Christ Church, Oxford, where he graduated with a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics. Hugh is perhaps most well-known for his starring role as Neville Lawrence in Paul Greengrass’ The Murder of Stephen Lawrence, a ground breaking and culture changing drama for ITV as well as his regular recurring leading role on Holby City as Dr Ric Griffin. More recent television roles include Absentia, Breeders, Vera and Doctor Who. Hugh is also known for his work on the stage, in particular a celebrated run in Othello for the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Hugh’s recent roles in film have include: Book Club 2 (Candace Bergen, Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton, Andy Garcia) directed by Bill Holderman (2022), The Son (with Laura Dern and Hugh Jackman) directed by Florian Zeller (2022), The Railway Children (Jenny Agutter and Sheridan Sith), directed by Morgan Matthews (2022). Hugh has also recently been cast in The Return (Juliette Binoche/Ralph Fiennes) directed by Uberto Pasolini (2023).
Vincent Riotta (Gianni)
Vincent trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London in 1982, left with an Honours Diploma and The Ronson , Vanbrugh and Patrick Crean prizes.
He has successfully pursued a career in acting, directing, writing and has an extensive career as an acting teacher, spanning 36 years in three different countries; England, U.S.A and Italy.
He has worked as an actor with many esteemed movie directors ranging from Ridley Scott, Ron Howard, Christopher Nolan, Peter Greenaway , Zack Snyder, Jose Padilha and Bille August.
His credits include Mr Martini in Under The Tuscan Sun and most recently filmed The Pope with Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce directed by Fernando Mereilles, House of Gucci, directed by Ridley Scott, playing Lady Gaga’s father, Fernando Reggiani, Cory Berg in the Oscar nominated Tar directed by Todd Field and Chef Gianni, directed by Bill Holderman, in the soon to be released ‘Book Club 2, The Next Chapter.
Among some of the many actors he has worked with are; Tom Hanks, Hilary Swank, Chris Hemsworth, Helena Bonham Carter, Daniel Day Lewis and Penelope Cruz, Diane Lane, Mila Kunis, Nicholas Cage, Antonio Banderas, Sofia Loren, Susan Sarandon, James Mason.
He also won the Best Actor Award at the Barcelona Film Festival.
His theatre credits are numerous, as are his TV roles and his showreel and full credits can be accessed via IMDB.COM
His TV career stretches from work on the BBC and ITV in the UK, RAI and MEDIASET in ITALY to Netflix and HBO in the USA. Most recent roles are in the HALLMARK remake of the classic Audrey Hepburn movie, Roman Holiday, renamed Rome in Love and the role of Father Giancana for the CBS series, Blood and Treasure and is currently working on the tv series ‘Those About To Die’ directed by Roland Emmerich, starring Anthony Hopkins, in the role of the Roman Senator, Leto.
As an acting teacher, he founded the Hollywood Blvd Acting School in Hollywood, California where he was artistic director for four years.
He has also taught acting courses at acting academies and film schools all over the UK, Italy and the USA.
He has directed many theatre plays and a feature length movie starring John Savage.
Bill Holderman (Director/Co-Writer/Producer)
Bill Holderman is a dynamic director, writer, and producer who has quickly established himself as a highly sought-after director comfortable with big-budget blockbusters.
Most recently, Holderman directed, co-wrote and produced BOOK CLUB: THE NEXT CHAPTER, which is set to release May 12, 2023 by Focus Features. Filmed on location in Italy, the film stars Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen and follows four best friends as they take their book club to Italy for the fun girls trip they never had. After things take a turn and secrets are revealed, the once relaxing vacation turns into a once-in-a-lifetime cross-country adventure. THE NEXT CHAPTER is the sequel to the 2018 hit blockbuster film BOOK CLUB, which grossed over $104M worldwide and which Holderman also directed, co-wrote and produced.
Previously, Holderman wrote and produced A WALK IN THE WOODS starring Robert Redford, Nick Nolte and Emma Thompson, which premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and became one of the highest grossing Sundance films of the last decade.
Holderman’s previous independent production credits include WHAT THEY HAD, starring Hilary Swank and Michael Shannon, and THE OLD MAN & THE GUN starring Robert Redford, Casey Affleck and Sissy Spacek. He also produced the BBC/PBS multi-part music documentary AMERICAN EPIC executive produced by T Bone Burnett, Jack White and Robert Redford, which debuted at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.
Prior to venturing out on his own, Holderman spent 14 years at Robert Redford’s Wildwood Enterprises. As Redford’s producing partner, he successfully guided Wildwood and Redford to some of the most productive years in the company’s storied history, including a wide spectrum of films ranging from Academy Award®-nominated indie hit ALL IS LOST to franchise juggernaut CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER.
He now oversees his production company Apartment Story, alongside his wife Erin Simms (with whom he collaborated on the BOOK CLUB films), which is continually developing a variety of new projects.
Holderman was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois and is a graduate of Northwestern University.
Erin Simms (Co-Writer/Producer)
Erin Simms is a powerhouse producer and screenwriter known for her thoughtful, character-driven writing.
Most recently, Simms co-wrote and produced BOOK CLUB: THE NEXT CHAPTER, which is set to release May 12, 2023 by Focus Features. Filmed on location in Italy, the film stars Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen and follows four best friends as they take their book club to Italy for the fun girls trip they never had. After things take a turn and secrets are revealed, the once relaxing vacation turns into a once-in-a-lifetime cross-country adventure. THE NEXT CHAPTER is the sequel to the 2018 hit blockbuster film BOOK CLUB, which grossed over $104M worldwide and which Simms also co-wrote and produced.
Previously, Simms worked for Robert Redford at Wildwood Enterprises where she oversaw a variety of projects, including Disney’s live-action PETE’S DRAGON, and developed and produced the Netflix film OUR SOULS AT NIGHT starring Jane Fonda and Robert Redford, which premiered at the 2017 Venice Film Festival. She also served as an Associate Producer for the 2015 Sundance hit A WALK IN THE WOODS starring Robert Redford, Nick Nolte and Emma Thompson, as well as the documentary CATHEDRALS OF CULTURE: THE SALK INSTITUTE directed by Robert Redford and Executive Produced by Wim Wenders.
Simms now works alongside her husband and BOOK CLUB collaborator Bill Holderman as a founding partner of their production company Apartment Story, with an exciting and wide-ranging slate of projects in continuous development.
Erin Simms was born and raised in Montreal, Canada where she starred on several TV shows including Fox Network’s STUDENT BODIES before making the official move to production.
Andrew Dunn (Director of Photography)
British Cinematographer Andrew Dunn BSC, winner of three BAFTA Awards & British Society of Cinematography Award.
Dunn’s body of work spans fifty years & includes over sixty Feature Films, in addition twenty-five film dramas for the BBC.
He has worked with a great many notable Actors, Directors & Producers on a huge range and style of films; these include, in no particular order, The Madness Of King George, LA Story, The BodyGuard, Ever After, The Crucible, The Count Of Monty Cristo, Liam, Hitch, Precious, Crazy Stupid Love, The Perks of Being A Wallflower, Hot Rod, Lee Daniels The Butler, History Boys, Practical Magic, Miss Potter, Lady In The Van, Gosford Park, The United States vs Billie Holiday, Downton Abbey: A New Era, and of course Book Club & Book Club: The Next Chapter.
He is tremendously hardworking and a perfectionist by nature, known for his speed & his whole hearted commitment and immersion to each and every project.
A natural visual storyteller, bringing unique and evocative imagery to each and every film.
Throughout his career he has been mindful of not being pigeon-holed, type-cast into a certain genre therefore he has worked on a wide variety of films; working with Film, and more recently Digital Technology, where ever possible he chooses to operate the camera, believing it helps to follow the truth of the line of the story.
From sitting on the knee, at 18 months old of the celebrated Cinematographer Freddie Young BSC, following the dream and developing his role in the Film-Making process, he has been lucky enough to work with, alongside, and learn from so many talented people, “Never work with your heroes” they say ~ “I did, i do” says Dunn.
“Our time Filming together in Rome & Venice was an honour and a joy. Together, we made some movie magic and lifelong friends”.
"I think that the best thing that anyone involved in making a Film can hope for, is there, for its conception, its gestation, and there for its birth - and that it has a full and happy life; sharing that life with huge audiences, changing other lives, bringing joy, laughter, tears and fears”.
Andrew, lives with his wife Emma & their dog Wilma within Exmoor National Park, U.K. They have two young adult children, both in the industry, Maxim Dunn a 2nd AC and Grace Truly an Actress, who both worked on Book Club: The Next Chapter.
Stefano Maria Ortolani (Production Designer)
Born in Rome, Italy, Stefano Ortolani has a degree in Architecture from the University of Florence (Italy).
When he was still a university student, Stefano had the chance to work with some of the most famous Italian directors (Luchino Visconti, Giuseppe Patroni Griffi, Mario Monicelli, etc.) and had his first international experience in the movie “Orca the Killer Whale” by Michael Anderson.
Among his credits: “The Monsignor” by Frank Perry, “The Sicilian” by Michael Cimino, “The Last Days of Pompeii” by Peter Hunt, “Portrait of a Lady” by Jane Campion, “The Talented Mr. Ripley” by Antony Minghella, “Gangs Of New York” by Martin Scorsese, “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou” by Wes Anderson, “Ocean's 12” by Steven Soderberg, “Mission Impossible III” by J.J. Abrahams and the TV Mini Series “Angels in America” by Mike Nichols.
He supervised the art direction of the feature film “The Two Popes” by Fernando Meirelles, reproducing an outstanding fullscale copy of the Sistine Chapel.
He has worked as production designer in:”Exorcist-The Beginning” by Renny Harlin, “The Nativity Story” by Catherine Hardwicke, “Borgia” (TV series, 24 episodes) for Canal +, “Risen” by Kevin Reynolds, “Castello Cavalcanti” a short movie by Wes Anderson, “The Book Club -The Next Chapter” by Bill Holderman, and others.
Stefano is the production designer in the new and upcoming Terrence Malick’s feature film “The Way of the Wind”.
He has collaborated with Sofia Coppola as production designer.
He has built a virtual reality installation for the experimental project "Carne y Arena" by Alejandro Gonzàles Inarritu presented at the Prada Foundation in Milan and at the Cannes Film Festival (2017).
He has designed and built a multi-purpose Roman Theater at Cinecittà Film Studios.
Stefano has worked as production designer on dozens of photoshoots and commercials for Nike, Nespresso, Barilla, Lavazza, Scervino and many other international brands.
He has also worked as production designer in two VR movies: “Biblical Project” by David Hansen and “The Seven Miracles of Jesus” by Rodrigo Cerqiera and Marco Spagnoli.
Stefano works as a freelancer in his own office located at Cinecittà studios.
Doc Crotzer (Editor)
Doc Crotzer, ACE, discovered the power of editing at age 10, when he hooked together 2 VCRs to turn the 3 Back to the Future movies into one 6 hour epic to show his friends. He moved from the Midwest to Los Angeles after college, starting his career in documentaries. He's since directed, produced, and edited studio feature films, immersive documentaries, and award winning television series including Glee and Sons of Anarchy. He considers filmmaking his side hustle to his life’s work: taking pictures of his dogs.
Doc was nominated for an Emmy for his work directing a web series and nominated for ACE and HPA awards for his work on the TV show Glee. He is a proud member of the Director's Guild of America, American Cinema Editors, and the Television Academy of Arts & Sciences. You can learn more about him at doccrotzer.com
Stefano De Nardis (Costume Designer)
Stefano De Nardis is an Italian Costume Designer that has gained a Costume Designers Guild of America nomination for best costumes with his work as Designer for the 2009 Emmy nominated Alchemy TV miniseries “Coco Chanel” – starring Shirley MacLaine.
His professional training happened in the world of Haute Couture in Rome, whilst at the same time studying Fashion and Costume : following an early career as Product Manager in the Far East for an italian Ready-to-wear firm, he landed in the Costume field by the late 90’s thanks to his experience in running very big, very demanding workshops.
For this reason he alternates to his own commitments as Costume Designer the responsabilities of supervising costume-making for large-scale international projects: he has run Costume Departments for “Gangs of New York,” “Prince of Persia - the Sands of Time,” “Pirates of the Caribbean - on Stranger Tides,” “47 Ronins,” “Jumper,” “Avengers - Age of Ultron,” the Bond movies “Spectre” and “No time to die,” ”American Assassin,” “All the money in the world,” “Men in black: international,” “The King’s Man,” “Red Notice,” and the forthcoming “Mission Impossible - Dead reckoning - Part One” and “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny”.
As a Designer, he has created costumes for several miniseries for Italian TV Company “Channel 5 / FININVEST” – and, internationally, has been a Designer for the Emmy-nominated NatGeo miniseries “Killing Jesus,” the movie “Christ the Lord” – from Anne Rice’s best selling novel, and Luke Scott sci-fi feature “Morgan,” starring Anya Taylor-Joy.
He has co-designed, with fellow colleague and dear friend Oscar winner Janty Yates, costumes for Ridley Scott’s “Exodus – Gods and Kings” and “House of Gucci,” starring Lady Gaga – and is at the moment in Morocco working with them on “Gladiator II”.
He considers the chance he got to dress 4 living legends of the screen such as the leading Ladies of “Book Club 2 – the Next Chapter” as a true achievement in his career.