WHY WE CHANGED
THE NAME OF THE FILM
THE MISSING PIECE
MONA LISA IS MISSING
From August 2011 to December 2013, we marketed the film under two names: The Missing Piece: Mona Lisa, Her Thief, The True Story here in the U.S. and Mona Lisa Is Missing overseas. Our international sales agent, First Hand Films, thought that Mona Lisa Is Missing was a more marketable title (and easier to translate into foreign languages). Plus our educational distributor Alexander Street Press and our North American distributor Virgil Films agreed. They're all marketing the film under that name.
I was resistant to changing the title at first because I liked The Missing Piece. I thought it was provocative and interesting. I still do. But after we started being booked into movie theaters, something changed my mind. Here are two marquees -- one from the ArcLight in Hollywood. The other from the Ambler in Ambler, PA.
Now, if you know what the film is about -- Vincenzo Peruggia, the man who stole the Mona Lisa -- then there's no problem. But since we don't have $150 million to spend on publicity, odds are that the average person won't know what the film is about just from the title. Seeing those marquees made me think that it would have been much better for them to have said MONA LISA IS MISSING." (Maybe someone who was having second thoughts about seeing Machete Kills, would have seen Mona Lisa Is Missing instead.)
So the name is changing from here on in. There will still be plenty of references to The Missing Piece in this website and in our blog and Facebook posts. That name got us to be seen in festivals, theaters and museums all across the US. It's part of the history of our film. But Mona Lisa is the star and our leading lady. There would be no film if she hadn't been stolen. Her name deserves to be in the title.
Mona Lisa Is Missing