Where was The Life Ahead filmed? The Location in Italy

Where was The Life Ahead filmed
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The Life Ahead (La vita davanti a sé in the original Italian) is the return of legendary Italian actress Sophia Loren after 10 years of retirement. The star, now 86, still retains a strong screen presence acting in her son's Edoardo Ponti new project. The movie is a remake of 1977'Oscar Winner in foreign language French film Madame Rosa, also based on the novel by Romain Gary The Life Before Us.

The story revolves around Sophia playing Madame Rosa, a Holocaust survivor and former prostitute who takes care of orphan kids like Momo (Ibrahima Gueye), a rebel 12-years old boy from Senegalese origins.

The Life Ahead was filmed in Bari, the capital city of the wonderful Apulia region, the heel of the Italian boot. Here is our spoiler-free filming locations guide:

The Life Ahead house
The house of Madame Rosa is very close to Bari's central train station, at 208 Corso Cavour. The first time I traveled to Bari, my guesthouse was located just a block away from here. The area is a good base to visit the city, but a bit cramped as you have a section of the elevated viaduct in the middle and there are too many cars everywhere. The filmmakers also set up here, on the square in front of the house, the flea market where Momo robs Madame Rosa the silver candlesticks.
(You can open all the locations on Google Maps by clicking on the links below in the captions ↴)
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Sophia Loren filming in Bari
Hamil's antique shop (played by Iranian actor Babak Karimi) is located in the heart of Bari's old city, Bari Vecchia. This beautiful medieval quarter is a maze of streets filled with the white houses characteristic of this region bordering the Adriatic Sea. Local media reported that some filming also took place in an old palace located in the historic center of Trani. We reckon that this house could have been used to shoot the interiors of the store.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Du hast das Leben vor dir drehorte
The scene when Momo is happy cycling his new bike under the palm trees was shot at Giardino Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, the boulevard that splits the old and the new city. Some establishing shots show the lighthouse Faro di Punta San Cataldo in the harbor. Pictured below, the historical center with the imposing Cathedral of San Sabino rising above the rooftops.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


The Life Ahead location
The countryside house and the Rural farm with the never-ending field of olive trees were filmed at Masseria Brancati, located near the town of Ostuni in the Salento region. The Masseria is today a bed and breakfast, occupying an old fortified rural farmhouse. The estate is situated in the middle of a centuries-old olive trees area called Marina di Ostuni. Do not miss out on this gorgeous town, also known as The White City (Città Bianca), if you are around.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Dove è stato girato La vita davanti a sé

Where is the Jewish cemetery? Can you help to improve this article about the shooting locations of The Life Ahead? To complete and correct this report, any feedback, info, or images that you may have are more than welcome, thank you!

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We can't wait until this pandemic is over to go back to Italy. In the meantime, some travel guides can help to make the waiting period less tedious. Also here is a link to Sophia Loren's definitive autobiography, Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow: My Life, revealing her personal journey from the hardship of her childhood in Naples to her life as a screen legend:

Sophia Loren autobiography Puglia book Lonely Planet Italy

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