Showing posts with label Joe Medeiros. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Joe Medeiros. Show all posts

November 8, 2014

Saturday, November 08, 2014 - ,,, No comments

The documentary "Mona Lisa is Missing" is now available on Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon

by Catherine Schofield Sezgin, ARCA Blog Editor

Director Joe Medeiros' 2012 documentary "Mona Lisa is Missing" (formerly "The Missing Piece") is now available on Netflix, iTunes and Amazon through US distributor Virgil Films:
This documentary examines the case of Vincenzo Peruggia, an unassuming house painter charged with stealing the "Mona Lisa" from the Louvre in 1911. (Netflix summary)
ARCA alumna Tanya K. Levrick reviewed the film in July 2012 on the ARCA blog here. The film was also produced by Joe's wife, Justine, and showed in Los Angeles last year.

Medeiros discusses the theft of Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece from Paris on the ARCA blog here.

February 27, 2014

Thursday, February 27, 2014 - , No comments

"Mona Lisa Is Missing" DVD offers a special discount price to ARCA blog readers

Joe Medeiros, producer of the documentary on the 1911 theft of the Mona Lisa from the Louvre, has a special offer for ARCA blog readers:
It's the greatest little-known art theft of all time. With the most unlikely thief. And no one knows why he really did it. Until now. 100 years after the theft of the Mona Lisa, the award-winning documentary "Mona Lisa Is Missing" reveals the real reason Vincenzo Peruggia stole the Mona Lisa from the Louvre -- a reason Peruggia's only daughter didn't even know. And now ARCA members can own the DVD -- featuring 90 minutes of Bonus Features -- at a special discount price. Click on this link: and enter (or copy and paste) this special code at checkout: 3UJGLXNQYTJ8.
Here's a blog post on the documentary -- I've seen it twice and will still purchase this for the additional footage offered on the DVD.

October 29, 2013

"The Missing Piece: Mona Lisa, Her Thief, The True Story" showing twice a day this week at the Arclight Pasadena

The documentary, The Missing Piece: Mona Lisa, Her Thief, The True Story, is playing now at the Arclight Theatre in the Paseo Colorado shopping center in Pasadena.

This award-winning documentary, directed and written and produced by the husband and wife team of Joe and Justine Medeiros, is a story of an audacious art theft - Vincenzo Peruggia, an immigrant house painter, walked into the Louvre on a Monday morning and then out with the Mona Lisa under his arm and onto the streets of Paris in late August (a notoriously quiet month in Paris when residents traditionally flee the humidity to the sea and the countryside). For two years Leonardo da Vinci's portrait allegedly of Lisa Gherardini del Giocondo escalated in fame as the public wondered if the masterpiece would ever be recovered. The Medeiros team traveled to Peruggia's hometown in northern Italy to meet his daughter, then in her 80s, to find out from her about the man who had stolen La Joconde -- only to find out that her father had died before she turned two years old and she herself had not heard about the theft until she was about to marry. The Medeiros' promised Peruggia's daughter to find out why her father had become an art thief. They studied primary materials, including archival material related to the police investigation, and re-traced Peruggia's actions with his grandson and granddaughter.

The film will screen at noon and 2 p.m. Tuesday (October 29) through Sunday (November 3).

October 17, 2013

Thursday, October 17, 2013 - , No comments

Film director Medeiros on whether or not Vincenzo Peruggia hid in the closet before he stole the Mona Lisa in 1911

by Catherine Sezgin, ARCA Blog Editor-in-Chief

Did Vincenzo Peruggia just walk into the Louvre on a Monday morning and steal the Mona Lisa or did he hide overnight in the Paris museum? Was Peruggia an employee of the Louvre at the time of the theft? Did he pick Leonardo da Vinci's painting because it was small and portable (the easiest to take of the Italian works on display in the Salon Carré? I asked these questions to Joe Medeiros, writer and director of "The Missing Piece: Mona Lisa, Her Thief, The True Story".
Actually, Peruggia wasn't working at the Louvre when he stole the painting.  He had finished putting the artwork behind glass in January.  But Gobier, the company he worked for, continued to work there repairing the glass roof of the museum.  Peruggia had left Gobier in July during a strike and had gone to work with another company. I do think he stole it for the size, but also -- possibly --because it was a Leonardo. According to his testimony -- and the police didn't dispute it -- he entered that morning and didn't hide overnight.  No reason to.  Security was very lax.
Here is a link to the documentary's blog where Mr. Medeiros posts all the screenings.

If you're in San Diego tonight, you might be able to catch the show!

October 13, 2013

"The Missing Piece: Mona Lisa, Her Thief, The True Story" documents an art crime and a writer's obsession to understand motive

Joe and Justine Medeiros in Hollywood
 at the Arclight Documentary Festival
by Catherine Sezgin, ARCA Blog Editor-in-Chief

“The Missing Piece: Mona Lisa, Her Thief, The True Story”, winner of the award for Best Historical Documentary in the San Antonio Film Festival, provides clarity on how and why an immigrant housepainter, Vincenzo Peruggia, stole Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” from the Louvre in 1911.

Written and directed by Joe Medeiros and produced by his wife Justine, this documentary of a Parisian art theft tells the story of one writer’s obsession that lead him to a Northern Italian village to meet the art thief’s only living offspring, 84-year-old Celestina. Joe Medeiros hoped that Peruggia’s daughter could explain why her father, an immigrant painter living in Paris, had stolen the da Vinci masterpiece from the Salon CarrĂ© and hidden it for two years. Was Peruggia a patriot who believed he was returning a masterpiece Napoleon had stolen from Italy? Or was he an ordinary criminal looking to make a fortune? Unfortunately, Celestina did not remember her father who had died of a heart attack in Paris before she was two years old. Not until the age of 20 did Celestina learn from her aunt that her father had stolen the Mona Lisa. After promising to find out what motivated Celestina's father to steal da Vinci's masterpiece, Joe and Justine Medeiros visited the Louvre and archives in Paris with Peruggia’s grandson before traveling with Peruggia's granddaughter to the hotel where the painting was recovered in Florence in 1913.

“The Missing Piece” documents the efforts to research, translate and retrace a century old art crime. Art crime specialists such as Charles Hill, Scotland Yard Art Squad (retired), and Robert Wittman, FBI Art Crime Team (retired), appear with Louvre curators and other writers on the Mona Lisa theft (Dorothy and Thomas Hoobler, The Crimes of Paris). Medeiros draws conclusions from primary sources to explain how Peruggia stole the painting and got it out of his museum and to his apartment (apparently he used both a bus and a horse carriage); where he stored the painting for two years; how the French police investigated the crime and how close the great detective  came to identifying both the thief and the painting’s hiding place; and finally, the “missing piece” which leads conclusively to the motive for the theft. The story includes Peruggia’s bouts with lead poisoning, the truth about the psychological evaluation used in his trial, and how Peruggia returned to France after his imprisonment during World War I. The film ends with Joe Medeiros revealing the truth to Celestina, turning the story from art crime to that of family.

"It's not a big, budget Hollywood movie, but it does tell a good story that has a beginning, middle and, fortunately, a happy ending," Joe Medeiros said.

The movie's website and blog contains more information.

Tanya Lervik (ARCA 2011) reviewed this movie last year at a screening in Washington, D.C.

September 24, 2013

Showtimes for Joe Medeiros' documentary about the life and motivations of Vincenzo Peruggia's theft of the Mona Lisa

In July 2012, Tanya Levrik reviewed Joe Medeiros' documentary The Missing Piece: Mona Lisa, Her Thief, The True Story about the life and motivations of Vincenzo Peruggia who stole Leonardo da Vinci's "La Joconde" from the Louvre in 1911. This film is still being seen in festivals across the country:

 thru Thursday, Sept. 26
4:10 pm
The Screen, Santa Fe, NM

Thursday, Sept. 26 - 7:30 pm
Atlas Cinema Eastgate, Cleveland, OH

Tuesday, Oct 1 thru Saturday, Oct. 5 - 6:15 pm
The Guild Cinema, Albuquerque, NM

Thursday, Oct. 3 thru Saturday, Oct. 5
Friday, Oct. 4 1:00 pm & 8:00 pm
Saturday, Oct. 5 - 8:00 pm

Friday, October 11 - 3:30 pm

Friday, Oct. 11 - 7:00 pm
Sunday, Oct. 13 - 1:30 pm
Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH

Sunday, Oct. 13 - 3:00 pm & 5:00 pm
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX

Thursday, Oct. 15
Friday, Oct. 16
The Media Arts Center, San Diego, CA

Sunday, Oct. 20 - 2:00 pm
Sacramento, CA

Wednesday, Nov. 20 - 7:00 pm
Hiway Theater, Jenkintown, PA
Live Q&A with filmmakers

Sunday, November 24 - 4:30 pm
The Colonial Theater, Phoenixville, PA
Live Q&A with filmmakers

Thursday, Dec. 5 - 7:30 pm
Ambler Theater, Ambler, PA
Skype Q & A withfilmmakers

Tuesday, Dec. 20 - 8:00 pm
Batelle Film Club, Richland, WA

July 30, 2012

One to watch: “The Missing Piece” The Truth About the Man Who Stole the Mona Lisa

by Tanya K. Lervik (ARCA 2011)

On Sunday, July 29th, a private screening of “The Missing Piece” was held in a Georgetown theater for about 100 invitees in Washington, D.C. For some 30 years, filmmaker Joe Medeiros has been captivated by the challenge to clarify the true motivations behind Vincenzo Peruggia’s 1911 theft of the Mona Lisa from the Louvre museum in Paris. In this charming documentary, he shares his journey of discovery with the joyful wit and irreverence which served him well as head writer for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

Medeiros’s years of research began to coalesce when he discovered that Peruggia’s daughter was still living. He travelled to Italy to interview Celestina Peruggia while simultaneously arranging access to numerous experts and an important trove of primary resources. Of particular interest are letters Peruggia wrote home to his family and the notes from his psychological evaluation after the theft.

The final conclusions reached may not prove surprising to those familiar with the case. However, Medeiros convincingly debunks alternative theories, for example, that a conman mastermind named Eduardo de Valfierno had commissioned the theft in order to make copies to sell to unscrupulous buyers, or that it was really Peruggia’s friend Lancellotti who had committed the theft and hidden the painting. Above all, the film humanizes Vincenzo Peruggia, a man who had become an obscure figure even within his own remaining family. It’s a fascinating look at one of the most infamous art crimes and an engaging account of Medeiros’s personal quest for answers.

The film has recently been entered into numerous film festivals worldwide, the rules of which prohibit the sale of DVDs or public release until after the festival season ends. However, this is definitely a project to watch. Updates are forthcoming on Facebook, Twitter and the project website (