Hey everyone! Thanks to the transition to Semester II, we have a day off on Monday, so I thought “Why not take a ‘Roman Holiday’?”

For those of you who consider old black-and-white movies not worth your attention and time (which, I think, could not be more wrong), “Roman Holiday” is a 1953 American romantic comedy movie, starring Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn. Alright, alright, I used Wikipedia for the above sentence, committing an act of plagiarism. My bad. Thank God my blog is not monitored by the IB. Anyways, the movie is about Ann, a princess of an unspecified country who comes to Rome during a goodwill tour of Europe. As she becomes increasingly frustrated with the tight schedules, crushing responsibilities and all the formalities that are associated with being a representative of a country, she runs away from her country’s embassy (rebel alert!). Having taken a sedative, Ann falls asleep on a bench where Joe Bradley, an American reporter, finds her but fails to recognise the princess and, thinking that she is drunk, takes her to his apartment. The next day, as Joe finds out who his night guest is, he decides to gather some “exclusive material” about the princess and offers Ann to take a “Roman Holiday”. They spend the day together and guess what? *drumroll* They fall in love with each other (unexpected, isn’t it?) 😀

So yesterday, I took my camera and headed out to visit the most important movie locations. Oh yeah, before I did that, I re-watched the movie, taking screenshots of different scenes (sorry for the quality btw, I’m better at taking real photos than screenshots). Oh, and also, round of applause to me for walking 15 km on a sunny Saturday when Rome is overcrowded with tourists 😀

Via Margutta, 51. This is the real location of the apartment, in which Joe Bradley lived. Although I didn’t manage to find the exact place of the scene, because of the concierge who met me with my camera and my overwhelming enthusiasm with an extremely weary look on his face, I somehow assumed that I was the 1000th person coming there for the same reason and that it was the right courtyard.

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Fountain di Trevi. Fountain di Trevi appears in the movie only for a second, as the princess walks past it, but it’s quite recognisable. Unfortunately, making tourists disappear is far beyond my powers (that is extremely unfortunately tbh), so taking a photo without anyone’s weird face expression getting into it took me a while (you know those faces tourists make when they have their photo taken near some famous attraction). After like a million tries, I decided to adjust the settings so that you could not see the faces of people in the crowd but then there appeared another problem – the sharp black silhouettes of SELFIE STICKS in the photo!

Time for some irrelevant info (yay): it is believed that a person who throws a coin into the fountain will visit Rome again, two coins – find the love of your life, three coins – marry the love of your life, four coins – become rich (sounds like some insidious plan of the Roman municipality aimed at raising funds at the expense of naïve tourists :D). I was about to throw my whole wallet into the fountain but the crowd didn’t allow me to even get close to it, so oh well… Gonna stay poor and single for some more time, I guess 😀

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The Barbershop. Right by the fountain, the rebellious princess got her haircut. While the barbershop itself is no longer there, I managed to take a pretty close photo.

Time for more irrelevant info: When the fountain was being built, the owner of the barbershop (a pretty grumpy guy, it seems) was extremely frustrated with all the noises and dust, so he was constantly complaining to the architect – Nicola Salvi. In an elegant act of revenge, the architect put some sort of a huge stone vase right in front of the barbershop, completely covering the view of the fountain.

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The Spanish Steps. Here, Joe Bradley absolutely accidentally (you know what I mean, after following her for an hour) met Ann and offered her to take a “Roman Holiday” with him.

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Pantheon. According to the movie, there was a café near the Pantheon in which the two characters had some champagne, but when I got there, there was no café whatsoever, just a military guy who didn’t look like he was about to offer me a drink 😀 Besides, I probably made him uncomfortable by running around with my camera, trying to take the right picture. Oh, and the horse is still there in the background 😀

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Piazza Venezia. Appeared for a solid one second in the movie 😀

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Theatre of Marcellus. Same story here. I’m actually proud of this shot cause it’s very close to the movie scene.

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Colosseum. Oh, screw all those construction cranes!

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Mouth of Truth. As I was standing in a line with probably a hundred excited Asian tourists (according to my most modest estimations), I found myself thinking about the immense power of good advertisement. After all, all these people are eager to wait in a line for an hour to put their hands into a sewer drain or something like that. So romantic, isn’t it?

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Castel Sant’Angelo. This was the last location I visited. In the movie, here happened the dance party on a barge which quickly escalated into a scuffle created by the secret agents chasing the princess and, of course, the priceless Ann’s move – hitting one of the agents with a guitar! And even though the barge, the dance party and Gregory Peck are not there anymore, the castle and the river still are and will surely be for many more years to come 🙂

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Thanks for reading!

Love,

Stacy

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