One cold January day in Vienna, I saw The Name of the Rose (II nome della rosa)—the film —for the first time in the German version. At the box office not only could one purchase a ticket but also an ele gant booklet in the Neuer Filmkurier series (published in Vienna) with a color photo of Sean Connery on the cover along with the words Der Name der Rose. On the back of the booklet is a stunning black and white frame of the unnamed abbey in the background with Bernardo Gui (E. Murray Abraham) and William of Baskerville (Sean Connery) in the foreground. In the manner that one comes to both appreciate and expect in major professional theatre and opera, the booklet contains detailed descriptions of the princi pal actors, a biographical sketch of their acting careers, and a list of the international production staff-including the French Director, the West German Producer, the Italian Production Designer and Photographer, et alia. The personal histories of the actors are re markable for their diversity: Sean Connery from Scotland (surely the best of the 007s); E. Murray Abraham from Pittsburgh (whom one came to dislike, yet pity, as Salieri in Amadeus); Michael Lons dale, from a French mother and British father (making it possible for him to comfortably perform in both English and French lan guage films, including Orson Wells' The Trial, Truffaut's Baisers
Volees (Stolen Kisses), Luis Buñuel's Fantôme de la liberté, Joseph Losey's Galileo and Monsieur Klein); Christian Slater-the sixteenyear-old New Yorker (who plays Adso of Melk and was later ad mired for films such as Pump Up the Volume and Broken Arrow, opposite John Travolta); the peasant girl and would-be rose of the civitas terrena, Valentina Vargas from Chile; and the celebrated (now late) Viennese, Helmut Qualtinger-known for his role in films made from Kafka and Durenmatt fiction and for the almost mythical Herr Karl-as the secretly heretical and ultimately bumed-at-the stake Remigio di Varagine. The supplement to this universal-"catholic" one might as well say-cast and production staff is the author of the book from which the film was made, namely the Italo-intemational semiotician Umberto Eco.