Follow Us On:
Preparations are in full swing for the realization of the television series “Monte Rosa – The Lost Mine“.
In reality, the title, at that time we did not know it yet, in fact it was subsequently chosen by the Discovery Channel a couple of months before it was aired.
Yes, you read that right… Discovery Channel, one of the most important media of the moment, as well as the owner of DMAX, the adventure channel par excellence.
I couldn’t believe it in fact when I was contacted at the beginning of 2021.
They wanted adventure, they wanted danger, they wanted to show the world something original…
Something that no one had ever shown before on television…
And we could give it to them.
Filming should have started at the end of 2021, but between scheduling delays, commitments from the producer and the aftermath of the covid that cast uncertainty on the feasibility of filming, it was decided to postpone for a year.
And luckily I would say.
In fact, the amount of work to organize everything was impressive.
I spoke to the CEO of the manufacturer at least 3-4 times a day.
We exchanged ideas, information, stories of men and mines.
We were constructing the story that we would then tell during filming which would take place in October.
In fact, if on the one hand we knew what we were going to look for, on the other hand we also had to tell it.
This meant that a crew of about 15 people would have followed us day and night, with the obvious difficulties that all this entails.
Therefore, nothing could be left to chance.
In August, in theory everything should have already been done and well defined, but the reality was quite different.
There were still dates to be decided for the last site visits, hotels to book, helicopter flights to be organized and above all to complete the check-list of all the equipment.
As if that weren’t enough, of all the necessary equipment, much was still in the pipeline, and therefore not yet physically available to us.
Requests for permits also took a long time.
In September, a month before filming began, we were still waiting for the go-ahead for the helicopter flights, whose request that had been made the previous month was still sitting on the desk of some inattentive bureaucrat and probably not interested in that that a project of this type can bring to the territory.
Two weeks before shooting, I start to really realize what we’re doing.
Before it was like a dream, too far away to be tangible.
A set of fantastic words and ideas that I (Matteo Di Gioia) and Davide C. wondered if they would ever become reality.
Now, however, I was there buying new boots, spending more time on the phone than with my wife to finalize the last details, and last but not least, packing my suitcase.
On the fateful day of departure, the journey flies by, and when I arrive in the Antrona valley, the air has a completely different flavour.
At the moment there aren’t all the protagonists yet, it’s me (Matteo Di Gioia, the only protagonist at the moment), Davide, the producer, and part of the crew.
Let’s help arrange the approximately two thousand kg of equipment that we will use during filming.
The technical room (the room where all the equipment is kept and where the Pre Production Meetings are held), is the ballroom of the Alberobello farmhouse, and is so full that it seems to explode.
We have with us about 1.5 km of rope, backpacks, tents, sleeping bags, boxes of harnesses, carabiners, overalls, lights, backpacks of energy bars, sound equipment, video cameras, computers, hard drives, as well as a ton of equipment supplied to us by Makita.
The next day the other members of the team arrive, as well as protagonists.
They have been chosen because they are the best, each in their own field of course.
The cast of the series “Monte Rosa – The Lost Mine” it’s composed by (in alphabetical order):
Gabriele Succi: Survival instructor
Giorgio Bogni: Geologist and expert gold seeker, his experience has no equal.
Matteo Di Gioia: Speleologist, Explorer and president of the Underground Adventures group
Paola Veronelli: Motorcyclist, Adventurer, Speleologist… is there anything else to say?
Pier Franco Midali: Historian, mountain and local expert.
I have the best team I could ask for and money could buy.
In fact, it must be said that Federico (the one who financed the expedition) really spared no expense.
We’re here now.
This valley will be our home for about a month, this is the time we have available for research and filming.
Will we be able to find the Lost Mine of Salassi?
We have to give our best.
For the realization of this series, about 20 people worked continuously for a month plus another 10 calls when necessary.
Approximately 2000 kg of equipment were needed, a hundred helicopter flights, the complete rent of the three largest hotel structures in the valley.
The entire production cost around €200,000, more than half of which was spent locally.
We can say, without fear of being contradicted, that we have created the biggest media event and promotion of the territory that the Antrona Valley has ever seen.
A special thanks goes to Dario Ricchi, Mayor of Montescheno who has helped us and paved the way on several occasions.
Do you want to see the episodes of “MonteRosa – The Lost Mine” and don’t know where you can see them?
Here is the link for online viewing!