Iconic 1956 Italian film Engaged to Death, about motorcycle racing and famous marques such as Moto Guzzi and Gilera, could soon be restored through a crowd-funding campaign.
Running Films is trying to restore the two remaining and slightly damaged celluloid copies of Engaged to Death (The boyfriends of death).
It’s described as a “tale of passion and rivalry in the ‘50s motorcycle racing crazy world”.
The company needs €20,000 ($29,000) to restore the film and so far has attracted almost 300 backers who have pledged €16,365 ($23,883).
So it could soon be digitised and available on DVD and VoD with a comprehensive booklet in several languages.
The cast features several period racers including Australians Kev Kavanagh, the first Aussie to win a GP race, and countryman Keith Campbell.
Other racers include Geoff Duke, Libero Liberati, Dickie Dale, Albino Milani, Bill Lomas, Stanley Woods, Enrico Lorenzetti and Reg Armstrong.
The accuracy of Engaged to Death is due to the technical advice of Bruno Francisci, three times winner of the Milano-Taranto race on Gilera motorbikes.
A rare highlight of the film is footage of tests in the Moto Guzzi factory’s wind tunnel at Mandello del Lario. No other footage off the wind tunnel was ever taken.
Other features are racing at Monza, the highly demanding Milano-Taranto race, the 1956 MotoGP, the now-lost Italian Wall of Death and the reckless sidecar races on German dirt circuits.
The film was shot by Romolo Marcellini, Oscar nominee in 1961 for The Grand Olympics and featured actors Sylva Koscina and Rik Battaglia.