Men of the Cloth Filming Locations

As you might imagine, making MEN OF THE CLOTH has entailed a lot of travel over the years – both in the U.S. and abroad in Italy. Usually my crew and I are running around all day until dinnertime filming our interviews and footage, with no time to sightsee. But when I can, I sneak in a few photos here and there.

Abruzzo & The Appenines

Abruzzo & The Appenines

One of my favorite places is the region of Abruzzo, which I’ve visited several times. Sadly, it was in the news this spring because of the powerful earthquake that devastated the area around L’Aquila – the base for the G8 Summit of world leaders held in July. Abruzzo is not as well known as Umbria or Tuscany, but with its rugged terrain and views of the Apennines, it’s spectacular nonetheless.

All over the region, I found the food and local wine in even the most humble trattoria to be absolutely amazing. There are so many Italian Americans from Abruzzo here in the U.S. But with regard to the characters in my film, master tailor Checchino Fonticoli hails from the region (the town of Penne), as does Joe Centofanti’s family, and Nino Corvato’s wife. Take a look at a snapshot I took:

Palermo, Sicily (where Nino Corvato is from) made a big impression on me, especially its dazzling mix of architecture — Norman, Arab, Byzantine, Gothic, Baroque, and Spanish. Many monuments in the city center are illuminated at night, resulting in a magical effect. Check out a couple of shots I took of the Teatro Politeama Garibaldi:

Facade of the Teatro Politeama in Palermo, Sicily

Facade of the Teatro Politeama in Palermo, Sicily

Sculptures on the roof of the Teatro Politeama

Sculptures on the roof of the Teatro Politeama

Ardmore, Pa, home of Joe Centofanti, is a charming suburb of Philadelphia with a wonderful mix of ethnic restaurants, beautiful homes and little boutiques. These are shots taken by my faithful intern, Victoria Lombardi:

Joe Centofanti's shop & a view of Ardmore, PA

Joe Centofanti's shop & a view of Ardmore, PA

And New York City is…well… it’s New York City! It’s the place where I grew up (after leaving Greece as a child), so it’s both familiar and constantly changing. When I first started filming Nino Corvato, his workroom was on 52nd and Madison, but the building is no longer there (it was torn down). He since moved to a new space on Madison between 48th and 49th Streets. My intern, Heather Brookhart, took these smashing photos of NYC in Midtown:

The Bergdorf Goodman store in Midtown & a view from The Plaza Hotel

Comments

  1. Jan Toscani-Petersen says:

    My father, Francis D. Toscani, was a most prominent men’s tailor/designer from 1950 to 1973. He was the head designer for Botany 500, Daroff and then After Six Formalwear. He was president of the IACD, International Association of Clothing Designers. Growing up in an Italian family, he was taught tailoring at a very young age and was a fastidious illustrator, pattern maker, designer, and tailor. Recently the Philadelphia Museum of Art held an exhibition, “Tailoring in Philadelphia” and featured most of my fathers designs. This exhibition was on display at the Perelman Center of the Philadelphia Museum for over a year. Link: http://www.philamuseum.org/exhibitions/2011/733.html.

    Although he died in 1973 at the young age of 58, he was sought after by many celebrities, professional athletes and movie stars for his designs and fastidious attention to detail. Some of his clients were Dick Van Dyke, Brian Keith, Paul Newman, Hubert Humphrey, Wilt Chamberlain, Joe Frazier, Bobby Rydel, and most of the hard-to-fit Philadelphia professional athletes. In 1968, he was asked to join Esquire Magazine’s International Designers Symposium to talk about the future of menswear.

    When watching MEN OF THE CLOTH, my family and I recognized most of the detailed and painstaking craftsmen’s work…. things we saw my father do both at work and in the basement of our home. When he died, my mother donated many of his patterns and special designs to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. He was a genius, and very outspoken about the quality of a good tailor. This movie hit close to home for us and we felt like we were watching my father cutting the cloth, using the needle and thimble and pressing those lapels. It was wonderful.

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