The Dark Side of “Pinocchio”…

What do we do best in North Hollywood? THEATRE! Don’t miss Aliens With Extraordinary Abilities’ reimagining of “Pinocchio” at Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre August 5 – 28.

Well NoHo is a theatre neighborhood, with 20 in just one-square mile. We do a bunch of fun, new works too. A lot of collaborations happen in the NoHo Arts District because, well, the more creative minds the merrier. We especially like to see collaborations with our theatres and theatre companies.  Aliens With Extraordinary Abilities has partnered with our own Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre to do a variation on the Italian classic “Pinocchio.” But this isn’t your standard variation when a group of Italian actors and Zombie Joe’s is involved.

“Longing Pinocchio” is an authentic, all-Italian cast that brings to life their outlandish and dark adaptation of the classic “Pinocchio” story. While mourning Geppetto The Woodcarver at his funeral reception, we discover that every bizarre character from Collodi’s world-renown fairy tale is present – all except for his beloved puppet! Where is Pinocchio? Was the wooden boy ever real, or just a figment of a lonely man’s imagination at the twilight of his life? “Longing Pinocchio” features Valeria lacampo, Veronica Nolte and Eric Paterniani and is produced by Zombie Joe. It’s appropriate for ages 13 and up.


August 5 – 28
Sundays and Tuesdays at 8:30PM


Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre
4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, 91601


Who wrote the play “Longing Pinocchio?”

Hello, my name is Eric Paterniani and I wrote the play “Longing Pinocchio,” a new adaptation of the classic story by Carlo Collodi, world famous especially thanks to its Disney version.

What prompted you to create the play?

Having discussed for long with my partner Veronica Nolte the production of an original play that represented us, Italian actors, to a “foreign audience” we were really motivated by the arrival to the US of our colleague Valeria Iacampo, who graduated with us from Rome Theatre Academy “Sofia Amendolea.” Having survived a few years of almost extreme physical theatre training we decided to challenge ourselves with a world full of talking animals and marionettes, like the one of Pinocchio.

Why do you think “Pinocchio” is such a timeless classic?

Although it is a fairy tale (see a literal fairy with turquoise hair) “Pinocchio” can always be read with contemporary eyes. Everyday we are surrounded by people that make us challenge our own judgment, letting us confuse right and wrong. The wooden puppet is also an “alien,” someone different from everybody else that just wants to be a “real boy” and find a place in a world that will accept him for what he is and, as you can notice from our company name, it is a subject that we have at heart.

Don’t miss Aliens With Extraordinary Abilities’ reimagining of “Pinocchio” at Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre August 5 – 28 with free performances at the #NoHoBlockParty August 11.

How did the collaboration between Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group and Aliens With Extraordinary Abilities come about?

Our mission is to bring to the US new exciting and original plays from different countries with a sort of edge that borderlines physical and experimental theatre. Being Zombie Joe’s a staple in non-traditional and avant-garde theatre not only in North Hollywood but on the West Coast, we had our perfect candidate location for the debut of “Longing, Pinocchio.” We are so proud to see our play produced along many other exciting plays that wow L.A. audiences all year long.

Is there something you’d like to add?

Yes, enough about Pinocchio! Our story is really about his “babbo” Geppetto, a symbol of unconditional love towards a child, no matter how naughty and disappointing he could be.

Sadly, our show is set during the woodcarver’s funeral reception and we just have to discover more about him only from the questionable testimonies of the attendees. Without giving away too much about the show we really want to dedicate this piece to all the parents that live far away from their children, which in this case are us.

Don’t miss Aliens With Extraordinary Abilities’ reimagining of “Pinocchio” at Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre August 5 – 28 with free performances at the #NoHoBlockParty August 11.

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