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Jane Fonda Recalls Evening Tour of Sistine Chapel While Shooting ‘Book Club: The Next Chapter’ in Italy

From riding boats in Venice to landing in Tuscany in a helicopter, “Book Club: The Next Chapter” star Jane Fonda had quite the adventure in Italy with Diane Keaton, Mary Steenburgen and Candice Bergen.

Her favorite memory there? “When we went to see the Sistine Chapel at night, and there was nobody else there,” Fonda told Variety at the New York premiere on Monday night. “And we had the whole ceiling explained to us by a great guide. That was a real treat.”

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Although the sequel was filmed nearly five years after the original, Fonda never lost contact with her “Book Club” co-stars.

“We’ve seen each other ever since we made the first movie,” Fonda said. “We go to each other’s houses for dinner, we text each other, we email each other, we do Zoom together. It’s not like we were apart and then suddenly reunited.”

Based on characters by Bill Holderman and Erin Simms, “Book Club: The Next Chapter” follows four elderly friends as they take their book club to Italy. In addition to Fonda, Keaton, Steenburgen and Bergen, the rom-com stars Don Johnson, Andy Garcia, Craig T. Nelson, Giancarlo Giannini, Hugh Quarshie, Vincent Rotta, Giampiero Judica, Grace Truly and Giovanni Esposito.

“The idea for Italy came before the first movie even came out, and it was Candice Bergen, Mary Steenburgen, Jane Fonda and Erin on a plane saying, ‘We gotta do a sequel. And you know what would be fun? Let’s go to Italy,’” director Holderman explained. “So that was the foundational element for the entire thing.”

Asked where the four women should travel next for a potential third installment, Truly told Variety, “Maybe in a Scandinavian country. I feel like you don’t see enough traveling to Scandinavia, you know? Iceland or something like that.”

“Candice keeps telling us we’re going to Burning Man for at least part of it,” Holderman said jokingly. “But I’m gonna put a pitch in for Paris because I think that would be really fun.”

“Book Club: The Next Chapter” premieres in theaters May 12.

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