Rome, Lazio, Italy
Sergio Donati, the screenwriter famous for penning spaghetti Westerns, was originally in line for a career in law. His interest in the profession waning during his college years, he instead authored a mystery novel that was not only published but quickly optioned for a film adaptation. He met directorial maestro Sergio Leone while making his rounds in the industry, and contributed an uncredited rewrite to his Clint Eastwood western, "For a Few Dollars More." Goaded by Leone, Donati reteamed with the pair for the conclusion of their "Man with No Name" trilogy: the quintessential "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly." Again, Donati went uncredited. Recognition was finally his, however, when he wrote the epic western ,"Once Upon a Time in the West" for Leone, with whom he shared screenwriting credit. Both films are considered benchmarks in the genre, often ranking among the greatest films of all time. The pair's final collaboration was also Leone's last Western: 1971's "Duck, You Sucker." The heyday of Italian filmmaking declining in the ensuing decades, Donati nevertheless stayed busy, often penning multiple screenplays and miniseries a year. His best known latter efforts include the 1996 Schwarzenegger crime-actioner, "Raw Deal," and the 2009 Mafia docudrama, "The Sicilian Girl."