Spotlight on Film Producer Barbara De Fina: Reconnecting to Her Italian Heritage

May 29, 2017 1244


Notoriously, Martin Scorsese grew up between the 40s and 50s in New York City’s “Little Italy,” where the only two options for a boy were to enter a gang or to become a priest. As a child, he suffered from asthma and that helped him keep off the streets. Raised a fervent catholic, he didn’t become a churchman either, but rather one of the most celebrated filmmakers in the history of cinema. 

Barbara De Fina, born across the Hudson River in New Jersey, shares with Martin some Sicilian blood on her father’s side. However, since her mom’s side hailed from Hungary, Barbara’s cultural and food education was a “pastiche,” until she married Scorsese in 1985. No doubt, we can tribute to her husband and her mother-in-law, Catherine, Barbara’s acquired expertise in one of Italy’s top sources of pride, its cooking. 

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