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At Cinecittà Studios Lives The History Of Italian Cinema

Cinecittà Studios offers their guests a chance to experience the history of Italian cinema in an amazing lot south of the historic center of Rome, Italy.

Cinecitta Studios - The Factory of Dreams

The Factory of Dreams

The Cinecittà Studios are a short subway ride from the historical center of Rome (Centro Storico) and when you arrive you will be transported to a magical and historical “city” that will bring to life some of the biggest movies and historical events from the 80 year history of the studio.

Cinecittà is a film and television studio on the grandest scale that is actively in use, but you can visit portions of the lots, sound stages, and sets that are open to the public daily, except Tuesday. There are guided tours on the weekend in Italian and English that will bring you around the sound stages and during the week you can enjoy the exhibits on your own.

Cinecittà Studios - Director’s Chair

Director’s Chair

The Brief History Of Cinecittà Studios

Founded By Mussolini

The Cinecittà Studios were founded by Benito Mussolini in 1937 as a way to promote Rome and as a propaganda tool for the Fascist leader. Today, the studio uses the nickname Factory of Dreams (Fabbrica dei Sogni), but back then the slogan was “Cinema is the most powerful weapon”. Early films were not as successful as later films, but the goal at first was to create films that promoted the Fascist colonization of Africa and the strength of Italy. 

During World War II, the studios were bombed by the allied forces and later used as a camp for refugees that fled Rome after the bombings and even later it included refugees from Eastern Europe, Africa and Asia. During our tour of the studio, our guide pointed out signs and other indications from its time as a displaced persons camp.

Cinecittà Studios Create Neorealismo

After the war and after Mussolini’s government was expelled, Italian Neorealism grew in popularity. This film movement showed the grittier side of Rome and Italy with stories that highlighted the struggles of the poor and working class. These were originally filmed on location (i.e. outside of the studios) using nonprofessional actors. Some of the better known films from this genre include: 

Fellini’s Love For Cinecittà Studios

Federico Fellini, who apprenticed during the Neorealism period, is considered one of the greatest and most influential filmmakers of all time. After the popularity of the Neorealism style, a more extravagant and fanciful style, lead by Fellini, gained popularity across Italy and the world. His style was so influential that the term Felliniesque was coined. In response to this, Fellini said:

“I’d always dreamed of being an adjective when I grew up. I am flattered by it. I can imagine what the Americans mean when they say Felliniesque: opulent, extravagant, dreamlike, bizarre, neurotic.”

In the Cinecittà studio lot there are numerous indications of the popularity and importance of Fellini. First is the exhibit Felliniana, which they describe as:

“… an immersive dive into a world of Felliniesque imagination and a dreamy and evocative narrative of the friendship between the director and the production designer and their artistic partnership”. 

The second point of interest is Stage Number 5, which you will only see on the guided tour. In this soundstage, which is dedicated to Fellini and was the director’s favorite, you will discover where he filmed the majority of his projects.

Cinecittà Studios Today

Cinecittà Studios - Fellini Exhibit

Fellini Exhibit

The studio continues to be a popular place to create films and TV shows. When we visited the studio, every soundstage was booked, which unfortunately limited our access due to security and privacy issues. In the last thirty years the studio hosted films by international directors like Anthony Minghella, Martin Scorsese, Wes Anderson and Mel Gibson and it has also been host to the Italian version of Big Brother and Paolo Sorrentino’s series The Young Pope and The New Pope.

What Can You See And Do In Cinecittà Studio Tours?

You have two options for touring the studio, and the first is a self-guided tour. You can stroll around the open grounds (not around the sound stages) and spend time looking at the open exhibits. These include the Presidential Building (Palazzina Presidenziale) that will immerse you in the history of great Italian movies and film genres. You can then go Backstage, which shows the various trades, including direction, screenwriting, sound editing, costumes and visual effects. You can move onto the set of an American submarine made for the film U-571 and end up in Felliniana, which is a tribute to the great director.

Cinecittà Studios - Academy Award

Academy Award Winning Studio

The second option is to pay for a guided tour, which lasts about 1 hour. In addition to the exhibits mentioned above, you will also go behind the locked gates and walk amongst the sound stages. Cinecittà includes 19 indoor sound stages and a number of outdoor sets that from time to time undergo different setups according to the needs of the ongoing film and TV productions.

When Can You Visit Cinecittà Studios?

Guided tours are available on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays only so that you won’t interfere with any ongoing productions. The self-guided areas are also available Monday through Friday.

How Long Does The Visit To Cinecittà Last?

The guided tours of the studios will last approximately 1 hour, but you will have additional time for some self-guided touring and you can take as much time as you want. There is also a snack bar where you can sit in the shade and enjoy an espresso or a glass of wine, which ever you need.

How To Get To Cinecittà Studios?

There is parking available if you plan on driving to the studio, but the easiest way to get to the studio is on the subway (Metropolitana). From whichever stop is closest to you, take Metro A south towards Anagnina. It is the penultimate stop conveniently named Cinecittà. When you exit the station you will be right at the studio.

How Much Does A Tour Of Cinecittà Cost

Exhibition Ticket

General Admission (mon-fri) – €10


  • Children age 5-12 – €5
  • People under 26/over 65 – €7
  • Disabled, their helpers, children under 5 – Free
  • Family Ticket (2 adults, 2 children) – €30

Exhibition Ticket + Guided Set Tour

General Admission (sat/sun only) – €15


  • Children age 5-12 – €7
  • People under 26/over 65 – €13
  • Disabled, their helpers, children under 5 – Free
  • Family Ticket (2 adults, 2 children) – €40

More Than Cinecittà Studios Art And Culture

If you want a break from the ancient ruins, why not get out of the Centro Storico and make an afternoon of traveling back in time and experiencing the magic of Cinecitta Studios. While you are there you can check out:

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