Carlo Rustichelli

Carlo Rustichelli

ROME--Prolific Italian composer Carlo Rustichelli, who created scores for over 250 films during a career that stretched back to the 1930s, died at his home here Nov. 13 . He was 87. MSTies will remember his work for the 1984 film "Ator l'invincibile 2," also known as "Ator, the Blade Master," which was repackaged as the movie in episode 301- CAVE DWELLERS.

Born in Modena, Italy, he studied piano and composition at the Academia Filarmonica in Bologna, and later at the Academy of Santa Cecilia in Rome. His earliest work was in opera and theater music. He was only in his 20s when he began writing film music, but his career took off after World War II. His work with director Pietro Germi ("In Nome Della Legge," "Il Cammino Della Speranza") led to more and more offers. Over the years he proved he was capable of a huge range, creating for adventures, dramas and comedies with equal flair.

Among his most notable scores include director Mario Bava's historical mini-series "The Adventures of Ulysses." and director Billy Wilder's "Avanti!" He scored dozens of the so-called "spaghetti Westerns" and "sword and sandal" films during the boom in Italian movies in the 1950s through the 1970s. They included "And Then There Were None," "Alfredo, Alfredo," "Operation Snafu," "The 13 Chairs," "The Secret War of Harry Frigg," "The Gospel According to St. Matthew," and "Divorce Italian Style."

Rustichelli was awarded two Silver Ribbons by the Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists.

He retired in 1995. He was the father of actress Alida Chelli.