New RAI Docufilm Celebrates Giovanni Da Verrazzano’s Legacy in New York Debut

A captivating new documentary will premiere in New York City on the 500th anniversary of the Renaissance navigator Giovanni Da Verrazzano’s arrival. The film is titled “Giovanni Da Verrazzano: From the Renaissance to New York City,” directed by Giuseppe Pedersoli and produced by Beaver Lake Pictures in collaboration with Rai Documentari.

New York Debut: A Historic Milestone

Da Verrazzano statue in Battery Park
This heroic sculpture of Italian explorer and navigator Giovanni da Verrazzano (c. 1485-1528) is by Ettore Ximenes (1855–1926) and was dedicated October 9, 1909. © Harvey Barreson Flickr

The documentary will debut at a special screening at The Paley Center on April 17th. This date marks the 500th anniversary of Da Verrazzano’s arrival in what is now New York Harbor in 1524. The event will feature senior Italian politicians, executives from the National Italian American Foundation, and the director, Giuseppe Pedersoli.

Florence Events: Honoring Da Verrazzano’s Legacy

While the focus is on the New York debut, events in Firenze (Florence) will also honor Da Verrazzano:

VIP Preview and Gala Dinner: On April 23, a VIP preview will take place in the Salone dei 500 of the Palazzo Vecchio, followed by a Gala Dinner at Palazzo Gondi. Palazzo Gondi, the Fondazione CR Firenze, the U.S. Department of State, and Acsi generously support this event.

Exhibit Opening: On April 24, an exhibit dedicated to the influence of Giovanni Da Verrazzano on world cartography from the 1300s to the 1500s will open in Florence. The Governor of Tuscany, Eugenio Giani, General Massimo Panizzi, and US Consul-General in Florence, Daniela Ballard, will participate in the opening. The National Committee on Anniversaries of the Presidenza del Consiglio, the Region of Tuscany, the Italian Military Geographic Institute, and the Fondazione CR Firenze support the exhibit.

Unveiling Da Verrazzano’s Untold Stories

The filmmakers shot the hour-long docufilm almost entirely in Tuscany. It features dramatic reenactments with Carlo Pedersoli Jr. portraying Da Verrazzano and actor Neri Marcoré as the narrator. Rai 3 will soon broadcast the film in Italy.

The film offers revealing insights into Da Verrazzano’s life and adventures. It suggests that Da Verrazzano was, in many ways, more significant than Christopher Columbus. He set foot in North America and mapped the entire East Coast, from North Carolina up to Newfoundland.

The documentary also highlights Da Verrazzano’s interactions with indigenous peoples. Unlike the Spanish conquistadors, Da Verrazzano had friendly relations with the tribes he encountered along the Eastern Coast. He spent two weeks trading goods, dining, and learning about the indigenous people of Narragansett, in what is today Rhode Island.

Thanks to the work of Florentine archivist Marco Calafati, the film reveals for the first time on camera the original March 1523 loan documents from the Gondi Bank. These documents confirm the investment of 700 scudos in Da Verrazzano’s voyage — a crucial factor in getting the King of France to approve the expedition.

Be Inspired!

Don’t miss the premiere of “Giovanni Da Verrazzano: From the Renaissance to New York City” in New York City. Whether you’re in New York or Florence, these events offer a unique opportunity to explore the fascinating journey of a Renaissance navigator whose legacy continues to inspire today.

For more information visit the Italian Cultural Institute website.

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Build your authentic life in Italy! Live in Italy Magazine is an experiential lifestyle news site dedicated to anyone who has or will make Italy their home away from home. Read stories from expats and Italians. Named the Best Italy Magazine by Feedspot!

We feature in-depth articles and interviews covering:

  • Expat Life
  • Food & Wine
  • Travel
  • Lifestyle
  • Design, Art, & Culture
  • Real Estate, Hotels/Resorts & Long-Term Rentals

We are committed to creating great content. Please consider becoming a Sponsor by donating on Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Our Contributors:

Lisa Morales, Editor-in-Chief (Miami)
Christine Cutler, Travel Editor (St. Petersburg, FL)
Lorenzo Diamantini, Food and Wine Editor (Gubbio)
Adriana Suarez, Top 8 Editor (Miami)
Bel Woodhouse, Contributing Editor (Cozumel, Mexico)
Giulia Marchetti, Contributing Editor (Viterbo)
Angie Kordic, Visual Arts Contributing Editor (Stockholm, Sweden)
Feuza Reis, Breaking News Contributor (Miami)
Patrizia Vigolo, Contributing Wine Editor (Vicenza)
Natalia Bell. Food Contributor (Edinburgh, Scotland)
Emma Prentice (Ferrara/UK), Contributor
Justin Patulli (Ottawa, Canada), Contributing Editor
Annalucia Scotto Di Clemente (Rome), Contributing Editor
Sandra Diaz-Velasco (Miami), Interior Design & Architecture Contributor
Carrie Convilli (Venice), Veneto Events Correspondent

Al Esper Graphic Design: Digital Edition Art Director (Tennessee)
SQLHardhat: Aaron Morales, Website Design and SEO (Miami)
Visual Popcorn: John Craven, Video Editor (Miami)
Colls Fine Art Photography: Armando Colls, Contributing Photographer (Miami)
Sabrina Negro, Translator (Piemonte)
Giulia Ferro, Subtitler EN/IT (San Michele all’Adige)


Submit Your Press Release: lisa @

Guest Contributors:

Guest Contributor applicants should have a good understanding of WordPress. Email links to recent articles along with your social media handles to: lisa @