Fernando Piazza

Fernando Piazzo in Women of Devil's Island
Fernando Piazzo in Women of Devil's Island

Fernando Piazza was one of the more obscure black actors to ply their trade in Cinecitta in the 60s.  His first credited performance, as far as I can make out, was in Domenico Paolella’s entertaining historical adventure The Women of Devil’s Island (Le prigioniere dell’isola del diavolo, 62), where he plays the Guy Madison’s sidekick.  It’s a surprisingly good part, for the genre: he has quite a lot of screen time, get’s to be heroic himself and ends up winning over Margaret Rose Kiel, the lucky chap.  In 1964, he apparently turned up in the cheesey jungle movie Tarzak Against the Leopard Men (Tarzak contro gli uomini leopardo), but he wasn’t credited on some prints (I need to check this, I watched this not too long ago!)

After this, though, there’s a long break in his fimlography until 1968, when he turned up Joseph Losey’s camp favourite Boom, again receiving quite prominent billing, and another jungle movie, Ruggero Deodato’s Gungala, the Black Panther Girl (Gungala la pantera nuda).  Another lengthy break followed, until he pops up as a poker payer in Superfly T.N.T. (73), which was shot in Italy.

Fernando Piazzo and Margaret Rose Kiel in Women of Devil's Island
Fernando Piazzo and Margaret Rose Kiel in Women of Devil's Island

The time-spread of his roles  indicates that he was active and doing stuff throught most of the sixties, but quite what he was doing I don’t know.  On IMDB, he’s also listed as being a production secretary (on The Price of Power (Il prezzo del potere, 69)) and production manager (on The Heroes (Gli eroi, 73).  But was this really the same person?  Who knows!

Also, there’s a prominent agent in Rome who’s also called Fernando Piazza, who seems to specialise in handling foreign performers in Rome (such as Urs Althaus, Cyrus Elias, Tomas Arana etc etc).  I don’t know if this is the same guy or someone different, but amongst his clients is Veronica Wells, who also appeared in Boom. A coincidence?


  1. Yes, the agent Fernando Piazza and the actor of that name were one amd the same guy (he was Italian/Ethiopean). He was my agent for a few years. He died something like 4-5 years ago. For many years he was THE agent for foreign actors in the italian film industry, practically all of us were with him, until Actors International (now, alas, closed) moved in on the scene.
    best regards
    Ted Rusoff.

  2. yes, it is true. fernando piazza handled actors. I met him in Roma, January 1969, re:the movie THE GAMES. I was a basketball player from Monaco and went there to be an EXTRA. All I had to do is run, which I did every day, but Fernando rejected me…

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