AN urge to tell a story about separation led Indivisible director and co-writer Edoardo De Angelis to research the experience of conjoined twins.
Indivisible, which screens as part of the Italian Film Festival, is about twins Daisy (Angela Fontana) and Viola (Marianna Fontana), who are literally joined at the hip.
The conjoined twins dazzle fans at weddings, communions and baptisms with their voices, but the performers also serve as a good luck charm which people are always touching.
The closely bonded teenagers are managed by their deadbeat parents, but one chance encounter with a doctor who offers to separate them triggers a new attitude in Daisy, who suddenly yearns for physical independence.
De Angelis said a picture of real-life entertainer conjoined twins Daisy and Violet Hilton sparked the idea for the script.
The Hiltons were exhibited in Europe as children, and toured the United States sideshow, vaudeville and burlesque circuits in the 1920s and 1930s.
“I was looking for an emblematic frame to tell a story about separation, than I saw on the web an ancient portrait of conjoined twins Dasy and Violet Hilton; eureka,” he said.
“After months researching, I found an old conjoined twin, the only one survived of a couple; I travelled by car to a little village close to Avellino and I spent a few hours with this old man, in silence.
“I learned that everybody is conjoined in a way with something, so I used this in the movie.”
De Angelis said finding the two leads and creating the illusion they were conjoined was easy.
“I only auditioned Angela and Mariana Fontana, just them,” he said
“They were perfect.
“I love prosthetics and I hate digital effect, so the choice was very simple: use everything I can see and touch on the set, don’t use everything I cannot see or touch.”
The Italian Film Festival runs from September 21 to October 11.