Paolo Genovese was born in Rome in 1966. After getting a degree in Economics and Commerce he started working in the advertising department of McCann Erickson Company, for which he created several award-winning ads in Italy and abroad. He taught at the European Institute of Design (IED), specializing in the topic of Equipment and the Audiovisual Language, and at the Telecom Italia (Res Romoli) Higher School of Communications, where he specialized in Advertising Technology and Lanuguage.
While working in the advertising sector, filmed more than 300 commercials, for which h attained many national and international awards. He worked on projects with such companies as Tim, Tre, MacDonalds, Buitoni, Algida, Findus, Corriere della sera, Rai, Perlana, Q8, FIAT, Kellogs, Renault, Citroen, Coop, National Geografic, Motta, Vitasnella, Cirio, Birra Moretti, Vanity Fair, Repubblica, Ferrarelle, Studio Universal, Lasonil, Volkswagen, Alleanza and Alpitour.
In 2003 a jury of representatives of major journals in the industry recognized him the best director of commercials of the year.
In the film industry, in 2001 he co-authored with Luca Miniero and then directed the film entitled “Incantesimo napoletano” (Charm of Naples), which won the David di Donatello Prize and two Golden Globe awards.
In 2003 he wrote and directed a film entitled “Nessun messaggio in segreteria” (No Messages on the Answering Machine”), which starred Carlo delle Piane, Pierfrancesco Favino and Valerio Mastandrea. In 2006 his next film was “Viaggio in Italia, una favola vera” (A Voyage to Italy) with Licia Maglietta and Antonio Catania. “A Voyage to Italy” became an experiment of sort: it was shown in small snippets in twenty mini-series in Giovanni Floris’s program on Rai Tre TV Channel. In three years, in 2008, Genovese once again worked with Luca Miniero, this time for Buena Vista company. Together they shot a film entitled “Questa notte è ancora nostra” (A Night for Two), starring Nicolas Vaporidis. In the same year Genovese filmed the mini series “Amiche mie” (My Friends), starring Margherita Buy, Elena Sofia Ricci, Luisa Ranieri, and Cecilia Dazzi.
The most productive period of Genovese started in 2010, when he turned out another successful comedy year after year, and recevied one Golden and two Silver awards of the National Cinema Association. It was then that he directed:
“La banda dei Babbi Natale” (The Santa Claus Gang) (December 2010) with the comedy trio of Aldo, Giovanni and Giacomo, which grossed EUR 23 million and became a blockbuster.
“Immaturi” (The Immature) (January 21, 2011) and “Immaturi-2: Il viaggio” (The Immature-2: A Voyage) (January 5, 2012), both top-grossing films. For the former film Paolo Genovese was nominated for several David di Donatello prizes and the Silver Ribbon Prize. The music score for the film was written by Alex Britti.
In 2012 Genovese filmed “Una famiglia perfetta” (A Perfect Family), starring Sergio Castellitto, Claudia Gerini and Marco Giallini. This film received several international awards, was nominated for the David di Donatello, Silver Ribbon, and Golden Globe awards and won the Golden Clapper Award as the best comedy of the year.
In 2013 Paolo Genovese scripted and directed a very successful film entitled “Tutta colpa di Freud” (It’s All Freud’s Fault), starring famous actors Marco Giallini and Anna Foglietta. The music score for the film was written by Daniele Silvestre.
In 2014 Genovese worked on script and directed the comedy entitled “Sei mai stata sulla Luna?” (Have You Been to the Moon.) The film was released in January 2015 and its soundtrack, composed by Francesco de Gregori, received the Silver Ribbon award. The film also won a prize at a festival in Miami.
“Perfetti sconosciuti” (Perfect Strangers), a comedy completed in 2016 became the tenth full feature film directed by Paolo Genovese. In the film, the director continued cooperating with the famous Italian singing composers, and the main theme for the film was written by Fiorella Mannoia.
With Perfect Strangers, Paolo Genovese won the David di Donatello award for best film and best screenplay, the Tribeca Film Festival award for best screenplay, the Silver Ribbon Award for best cast and best comedy film, the Golden Globe Award for best screenplay, the Golden Clapper Award for best film, best screenplay, best actor, and best original song, the Tonino Guerra Award for best story, as well as other international prizes. The film grossed more than EUR 17 million, which became one of the best results for comedies over the past several years.
The rights to “Perfect Strangers” were sold to more than 50 countries of the world. Remakes of the film are being made in France, Spain, Greece, Hungary, Turkey and Russia. The comedy became one of the most successful European films over the past thirty years.
In the same year Paolo Genovese received the Ennio Flaiano film prize.
Based on his film, Paolo Genovese wrote a script for his series “Immaturi” (The Immature).
In 2017 he filmed “The Place,” selected to be shown at the film festival in Rome. The film was nominated for 8 David di Donatello prizes, and the rights for the film were purchased in 50 countries of the world.