Sophia Loren

Sophia Loren

Infobox actor
name = Sophia Loren


imagesize = 200px
caption = from the trailer for "Five Miles to Midnight" (1962)
birthname = Sofia Villani Scicolone
birthdate = birth date and age|mf=yes|1934|9|20
location = Rome, Italy (Cassino)
othername = Sofia Lazzaro
Sofia Scicolone
spouse = Carlo Ponti (1957-1962, 1966-2007)
children = Carlo Ponti Jr. (b.1968)
Edoardo Ponti (b.1973)
yearsactive = 1950 - present
website = http://www.sophialoren.com
academyawards = Best Actress
1961 "Two Women"
Academy Honorary Award
1991 Lifetime Achievement
baftaawards = Best Actress in a Leading Role
1961 "Two Women"
cesarawards = Honorary César
1991 Lifetime Achievement
goldenglobeawards = Cecil B. DeMille Award
1995 Lifetime Achievement
grammyawards = Best Spoken Word Album for Children
2004 "Prokofiev: Peter and the Wolf/Beintus"
awards = Volpi Cup for Best Actress
1958 "The Black Orchid"
NYFCC Award for Best Actress
1961 "Two Women"
Best Actress Award - Cannes Film Festival
1961 "Two Women"
NBR Award for Best Cast
1994 "Prêt-à-Porter"
Career Golden Lion
1998 Lifetime Achievement

Sophia Loren (born September 20, 1934) is an Academy Award winning Italian film actress, born Sofia Villani Scicolone. She is widely considered to be the most popular Italian actress of her time and is also famous for being a major international sex symbol.

Early life

Loren was born Sofia Villani Scicolone at the Clinica Regina Margherita in Rome on September 20, 1934 to Riccardo Scicolone and Romilda Villani. Riccardo refused to marry Romilda, leaving her, a piano teacher and aspiring actress, without support. Romilda, Sofia and sister Maria returned to Pozzuoli, near Naples, to live with Sofia's grandmother in order to survive.

During World War II, the harbor and munitions plant in Pozzuoli was a frequent bombing target of the allies. During one raid, as Sofia ran to the shelter, she was struck by shrapnel and wounded in the chin. Subsequently the family moved to Naples and begged distant relatives to take them in.

After the war, Sofia and her family returned to Pozzuoli. Grandmother Luisa opened their living room as a pub, selling homemade cherry liquor. Romilda played the piano, Maria sang and the shy Sofia waited tables and washed dishes. The place was very popular with the American GIs stationed nearby.

When she was 14 years old, Sofia entered a beauty contest in Naples and, while not winning, was selected as one of the finalists. Later she enrolled in acting class and was selected as an extra in the Mervyn LeRoy film, "Quo Vadis", thus launching her career as a motion picture actress. She would eventually change her name to Sophia Loren.

Marriage

Loren first met Carlo Ponti in 1950 during a beauty contest in which he was a judge. Having helped launch Gina Lollobrigida's career, he had Loren do many small parts. Later, while in Atlanta in 1957, he had lawyers obtain a Mexican divorce from his wife Giuliana and a marriage by proxy to Loren. Italy did not recognize divorce at the time, and the Catholic Church denounced their marriage. In 1962 the marriage was annulled. After this he arranged with Giuliana that the three of them move to France which at that time allowed divorce and they became French citizens. In 1965 Giuliana Ponti divorced her husband, allowing Ponti to marry Loren in 1966 in a civil wedding in Sèvres. [cite news
last= Exshaw
first= John
title= Carlo Ponti
publisher= The Independent
date= 12 January 2007
url= http://news.independent.co.uk/people/obituaries/article2144032.ece
] [cite web
url= http://marriage.about.com/od/entertainmen1/p/sophialoren.htm
title= Sophia Loren and Carlo Ponti Marriage Profile
publisher= About
author= Sheri & Bob Stritof
] [cite web
url= http://www.tvfanforums.net/index.php?showtopic=17345
title= Italian Producer Carlo Ponti
publisher= Associated Press
quote= archived at TV Fan Forums
date=January 2007
]

Career

By the late 1950s, Loren's star had begun to rise in Hollywood, with films such as 1957's "Boy on a Dolphin" and "The Pride and the Passion" in which she co-starred with Cary Grant and Frank Sinatra. Grant, reportedly, fell so deeply in love with Loren that he ardently proposed marriage, despite her obvious loyalty to Carlo Ponti and Grant's own union with actress and writer Betsy Drake. Loren refused.

International fame

Loren became an international film star with a five-picture contract with Paramount Pictures. Among her films at this time: "Desire Under the Elms" with Anthony Perkins, based upon the Eugene O'Neill play; "Houseboat", a romantic comedy co-starring Cary Grant; and George Cukor's "Heller in Pink Tights" in which she appeared with blonde hair (a wig) for the first time. Loren demonstrated considerable dramatic skills and attracted respect as a dramatic and comedic actress, especially in Italian projects where she could express herself more freely, although she acquired great proficiency in English.

In 1960, Loren's acclaimed performance in Vittorio De Sica's "Two Women" earned many awards, including the Cannes, Venice and Berlin Film Festivals' best performance prizes. Her performance was also awarded an Academy Award for Best Actress, the first major Academy Award for a non-English-language performance. Initially, the stark, gritty story of a mother and daughter surviving in war-torn Italy was to cast Anna Magnani as Sophia's mother. Negotiations, perhaps due to billing, broke down and the screenplay was rewritten to make Loren the mother; Eleonora Brown portrayed the daughter.

Belying the typical portrayal of the beautiful actress as vacuous and emptyheaded, Loren was known for her sharp wit and insight. One of her most frequently-quoted sayings is her quip about her famously-voluptuous figure: "Everything you see, I owe to spaghetti."

During the 1960s, Loren was one of the most popular actresses in the world, and she continued to make films in both the U.S. and Europe, acting with leading male stars. In 1964, her career reached its zenith when she received $1 million to act in "The Fall of the Roman Empire".

Among Loren's best-known films of this period are Samuel Bronston's epic production of "El Cid" (1961) with Charlton Heston, "The Millionairess" (1960) with Peter Sellers, "It Started in Naples" with Clark Gable (1960), Vittorio De Sica's triptych "Ieri, oggi, domani" (1963) with Marcello Mastroianni, Peter Ustinov's "Lady L" (1965) with Paul Newman, the 1966 classic "Arabesque" with Gregory Peck, and Charlie Chaplin's final film, "A Countess from Hong Kong" (1967) with Marlon Brando. Despite the failure of many of her films to generate sales at the box office, Loren has an impressive roster of credits and work with famous co-stars. Invariably, she has turned in a charming performance and worn some of the most lavish costumes ever created for the movies. Some of her most attractive performances include "A Breath of Scandal" (1960), "Madame Sans-Gêne" (1962), "Heller in Pink Tights" (1960) and "More than a Miracle" (1967).

Musical career

Loren also recorded well over two dozen songs throughout her career, including a best-selling album of comedic songs with Peter Sellers; reportedly, she had to fend off his romantic advances. It was partly owing to Sellers' infatuation with Loren that he split with his first wife, Anne Howe. Loren has made it clear to numerous biographers that Sellers' affections were reciprocated only platonically. This collaboration was covered in "The Life and Death of Peter Sellers" where actress Sonia Aquino portrayed Loren. It is said that the song Where Do You Go To (My Lovely) by Peter Sarstedt was inspired by Loren.Fact|date=January 2008

Later career

Once she achieved motherhood, Loren worked less. She moved into her 40's and 50's with roles in films including the last De Sica movie, "The Voyage", with Richard Burton and Ettore Scola's "A Special Day" with Mastroianni.

In 1980, Loren portrayed herself, as well as her mother, in a made-for-television biopic adaptation of her autobiography. Actresses, Ritza Brown and Chiara Ferrari played Loren at younger ages. She made headlines in 1982 when she served an 18-day prison sentence in Italy on tax evasion charges, a fact that didn't damage her career or popularity.

In her 60s, Loren became selective about choosing her films and ventured into various areas of business, including cook books, eyewear, jewelry and perfume. She also made well-received appearances in Robert Altman's "Ready to Wear" and the 1995 comedy "Grumpier Old Men" playing a femme fatale opposite Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon.

In 1991, Loren received the Academy Honorary Award for her contributions to world cinema and was declared "one of the world cinema's treasures." In 1995, she received the Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award.

In 1993, Loren presented Federico Fellini with an Academy Honorary Award. In 1998, she presented the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film for Roberto Benigni's "Life Is Beautiful".

Current activities

Loren, at the age of 72, appeared in the 2007 Pirelli Calendar entitled "A Bed and Five Stories" along with Hillary Swank, Penelope Cruz, Naomi Watts, and Lou Doillon. [cite web |url=http://www.pirellical.com/noflash/jsp/Modelle.jsp?Year=2007&Lang=en |publisher=Pirelli Calendar |year=2007 |title=Models |quote= [http://www.pirellical.com/thecal/calendar.html (alternate Flash version / access)] ]

Loren is a huge fan of the football club S.S.C. Napoli. In May 2007, when the team was third in Serie B, she told the "Gazzetta dello Sport" that she would do a striptease if they achieved promotion to Serie A for the 2007/08 season. "The fans have a total passion, the city deserves promotion", Loren said. Although they achieved promotion to Serie A on June 10, 2007, Loren did not do a striptease. [cite news | author=Staff writers | title=Napoli fan Sofia Loren to strip if team go up | url=http://uk.reuters.com/article/worldFootballNews/idUKL1508471620070515 | work=Thomson Reuters | date=2007-05-15 | accessdate=2008-04-23]

Loren's eyes can be found on the Italian wine Fattoria Paradiso bottles.

Filmography

References

External links

* Sophia Loren [http://www.sophialoren.com/ Official website]
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Persondata
NAME= Loren, Sophia
ALTERNATIVE NAMES= Scicolone, Sofia Villani
SHORT DESCRIPTION=actress
DATE OF BIRTH= September 20, 1934
PLACE OF BIRTH= Rome, Italy
DATE OF DEATH=
PLACE OF DEATH=


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