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    Twilight star Peter Facinelli breathes fire into The Absinthe Drinkers, becomes Italian citizen

    Twilight and The Twilight Saga: New Moon star Peter Facinelli will be spitting fire in his next role as Lucciola (which is Italian for "Firefly") in The Absinthe Drinkers, a film produced by Carlo Dusi (also producer in Robert Pattinson's up-coming film Little Ashes) and directed by John Charles Jopson.

    Facinelli, who has taken the Twilight world by storm with his performance as Dr. Carlisle Cullen, was offered a leading role but decided to take on the off-beat supporting role as Lucciola.

    While Facinelli's role as Carlisle Cullen calls for him to play a man in his early 20's, Lucciola's character is his in his 40's, and is a crazy, rather troubled artist (a sculptor) who hits the streets of Paris, France with his fire-breathing and gun-shooting. Lucciola, whose sidekick is a drug addict (with specific affinity for absinthe and opium), becomes smitten with the character Artemisia von Rach, played by Alicja Bachleda (currently working with Colin Farrell in Ondine). The role is loosely based on Alfred Jarry, famed loose cannon in the surrealist school of art and brilliant writer of the nineteenth century.

    Says Jopson, "Peter Facinelli's role in The Absinthe Drinkers is off-beat and very radical . . . It's unlike anything he's ever done, which is I suppose why he wanted to stay with the role." Continues Jopson, "There's no way to fake fire-eating," so "Peter and I have spoken about it and he's more than willing to swig a bottle of kerosene and spit out a four foot flame!"

    Peter Facinelli helped Jopson to select Bachleda as the female lead, and also had to go through rather extraordinary measures to secure his role as Lucciola, including obtaining dual-citizenship with Italy.

    While Facinelli's decision to become a dual citizen of the United States and Italy may not have been entirely based on his role as Lucciola in The Absinthe Drinkers, it most likely did play a part in motivating the timeliness of that decision. Financing for The Absinthe Drinkers requires adherence to a European Union Convention which requires that all principal cast members, such as Peter Facinelli, be European Union nationals. E' cosė!

    The tag line for The Absinthe Drinkers is "Art is Long. Life is short," and, at the risk of spoiling it for some Facinelli fans, that tag is indicative of Lucciola's fate in the film.

    It appears, then, that since Facinelli's part in The Twilight Saga: New Moon won't be taking him to Italy, his up-coming role in The Absinthe Drinkers will, as a citizen. The film is expected to start production this September, and no release date is yet announced.

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