Prolific director Giorgio Capitani has worked steadily in Italian film and television since 1949. Born in Paris in 1927, Capitani first appeared on the Italian film scene as the assistant director on the melodramatic World War II film "Fiamma che non si spegne," on which he also did some uncredited work on the screenplay. It was as a screenwriter that Capitani first gained notice, writing a string of popular films including another World War II drama, "Una donna ha ucciso" and the action adventure "Milady and the Musketeers." After directing his first film, 1954's "Piscatore 'e Pusilleco," Capitani largely abandoned his screenwriting career, penning only a handful of scripts over the ensuing decades. He worked within the legendarily prolific Italian studio system of the 1950s and '60s, and so his work has little of the auteurist imprint of the era's art house scene: his credits include mainstream fare like the sexy comedy "Che notte, ragazzi!" and the series entry "Samson and the Mighty Challenge," starring Alan Steel. His 1968 spaghetti western "The Ruthless Four," starring Van Heflin and Klaus Kinski, is admired by fans of the genre. As the Italian studio system broke down in the early 1980s, Capitani moved into the equally productive realm of TV movies and became even more prolific: between 1984 and 2011, he directed nearly 30 TV movies and TV series, as well as many individual episodes of TV series.