DreamWorks feature film ‘The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara’ talent search


The DreamWorks feature film “The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara” has launched an international talent search seeking a 6-9 year old boy for the lead role. In addition to in-person open casting calls scheduled around the world, talent can also upload a self-made audition video to the official casting website for the film. Shooting on the film will begin in April, 2017 in Italy. Three-time Academy Award winner Steven Spielberg will direct the film from an adapted screenplay written by two-time Academy Award winner Tony Kushner, based on the award winning nonfiction novel by David I. Kertzer.

“The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara” is about the true story of Edgardo Mortara, a 6 year old Jewish boy from Bologna who was reported to have been secretly baptized by a maid, and was deemed by the Catholic Church therefore to be Christian. Pope Pius IX decreed that the boy could not remain with his Jewish family. He was seized by the Papal State and taken to the Vatican where his indoctrination into Catholicism began. This was a cause celebre of mid-nineteenth century European politics and the domestic and international outrage against the pontifical state’s actions may have contributed to its downfall amid the unification of Italy.

The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara Open Casting Call Details

The casting directors for the DreamWorks feature film “The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara” have scheduled the following open casting calls below. They are looking for a 6-9 year boy to play the lead role in the film. The open casting call is open to any talent who can portray Jewish or Italian heritage, no accent is necessary. They are seeking someone who is truly special, gifted, curious and intelligent with a mischievous streak. Filming will take place in Italy beginning in April, 2017. Transportation and accommodations will be provided to the actor chosen for this role. This film is being directed by Steven Spielberg. Please only bring one family member with you and a recent photo to leave behind.

BOY – Male, age 6-9 to play 6 years old. This is a unique role for a truly special boy up for a challenge. The story deals with the complexity of an extremely intelligent and gifted child’s desire to both return to his family and explore an exciting new world. HE SHOULD APPEAR TO BE A JEWISH ITALIAN BOY. No accent needed. We are looking for a truly special, gifted, curious and intelligent boy with a mischievous streak who appears to be Jewish and Italian.


American Jewish University
Colen Conference Hall
15600 Mulholland Drive
Los Angeles, 90077

Sunday January 29, 2017
10:00am – 5:00pm
begins at 10:00am.


One on One Studios
34 W 27th Street
11th Floor
NYC 10001

Sunday January 29, 2017
10:00am – 5:00pm
begins at 10:00am.


Newman Street Studios
42 – 44 Newman Street
London, W1T 1QD
United Kingdom

Sunday January 29, 2017
10:00am – 5:00pm
begins at 10:00am.


JP Studios
400 Eastern Avenue
Suite 201A
Toronto, ON M4M 2K9

Saturday February 4, 2017
9:00am – 1:00pm
begins at 9:00am.


Dave & Mary Alper Jewish Community Center
11155 SW 112 Avenue
Miami, FL 33176

Sunday February 5, 2017
10:00am – 5:00pm
begins at 10:00am.


Shoreline Studios
1425 Charles Street
Vancouver, BC V5L 2S7

Sunday February 5, 2017
10:00am – 4:00pm
begins at 10:00am.


Bernard Weinger Jewish Community Center
300 Revere Drive
Northbrook, IL 60062

Sunday February 12, 2017
10:00am – 5:00pm
begins at 10:00am.

If you are unable to attend one of the open casting calls in-person, you can submit a home-made audition video through the following official talent search web page:

The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara Talent Search

If you have any questions regarding this talent search, please email [email protected]

Production Companies:

Leone Film Group
Via Birmania, 74/76
Rome RM Italy 00144

Marc Platt Productions
100 Universal City Plaza
Bungalo 5163
Universal City, CA 91608

Amblin Partners
100 Universal City Plaza
Building 5121
Universal City CA 91608


100 Universal Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608


Marc Platt
Kristie Macosko Krieger
Andrea Leone
Raffaella Leone


David I. Kertzer


Steven Spielberg


Mark Rylance – Pope Pius IX
Isaac Eshete – Antoine Freelance
Oscar Isaac – TBA


The Kidnapping Of Edgardo Mortara recounts the story of a young Jewish boy in Bologna, Italy in 1858 who, having been secretly baptized, is forcibly taken from his family to be raised as a Christian. His parents’ struggle to free their son becomes part of a larger political battle that pits the Papacy against forces of democracy and Italian unification


About Author

In 2002, Alan became interested in working on committees at the Screen Actors Guild, and has served on the Background Actors Committee and the Native American Committee. On February 26, 2008, Alan Baltes became "A United Journey For Humanity's Creative Innovators Advocating A Global Difference Honoree." Alan Baltes founded his company, AB Media Publishing LLC in 2007, which publishes the "Actors Resource Guides" for actors among others. His company also publishes a network of casting calls and auditions information websites. Alan is also an IMDb Pro News Desk Partner. In 2014, Alan Baltes opened a PR Services division of his company, providing publicity services for entertainment industry professionals. Alan is also a film and television casting director, with credits ranging from extras to lead role actors. Alan Baltes is the proud parent of two amazing young daughters, and strives to educate young actors about the trials and tribulations of an entertainment industry career. You can follow Alan Baltes at his Verified Facebook Profile (https://www.facebook.com/alanbaltes) and his Verified Twitter Page (https://twitter.com/alanbaltes).

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