Postcard from... Rome


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The Independent Online

Rome’s exquisite city centre might sound like the perfect location to shoot action scenes for the new Bond film, Spectre – but some locals beg to differ.

Pre-production leaks have suggested the British super spy, played by Daniel Craig, will be seen parachuting from a helicopter on to the Ponte Sisto, and tearing down the banks of the river Tiber in a Fiat 500.

With the cameras set to roll in just three weeks’ time, it’s the spectre of another sort, however, that’s preoccupying some in the Eternal City: the constant blight of rubbish and grime that has turned Europe’s most beautiful capital into one of its dirtiest. Dumped refuse, graffiti-covered walls, stairs and benches and broken barriers alongside the river Tiber will mean the Roman scenes in the Sam Mendes-directed film are not good publicity but a demonstration of everything that’s gone wrong with the city’s management, according to a campaign group.

The Basta Cartelloni blog site has listed photos of the graffiti- and grime-laden sites touted to appear in Spectre and asked archly whether they “will restore the mythic image of Rome” or “relaunch tourism in the capital”. However, Lucia Ritrovato, a spokesperson for the city, said Mayor Ignazio Marino was confident that the grimy scenes would be cleaned up before the filming began.