born in 1934 in Roma, Lazio, Italy
Sophia Loren in June 2009
|Born||Sofia Villani Scicolone
September 20 1934
|Other names||Sofia Lazzaro
|Religious beliefs||Roman Catholic|
(m. 1957-1962, annulled; 1966-2007, his death)
|Children||Carlo Ponti, Jr., Edoardo Ponti|
|Relatives||Alessandra Mussolini (niece)|
Sophia Loren, OMRI (born Sofia Villani Scicolone; 20 September 1934) is an Italian actress.
In 1962, Loren won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in Two Women, along with 21 awards, becoming the first actress to win an Academy Award for a non-English-speaking performance. Loren has won 50 international awards, including an Oscar, seven Golden Globe Awards, a Grammy Award, a BAFTA Award and a Laurel Award. Her other films include: Houseboat (1958), El Cid (1961), Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow (1963), Marriage Italian Style (1964), A Special Day (1977). She has received critical and commercial success in movies for home box-office such as Courage (1986) and in American blockbusters such as Grumpier Old Men (1995), and Nine (2009). In 1994 she starred in Robert Altman's Ready to Wear, which earned her a Golden Globe nomination in 1995. The same year she received the Cecil B. de Mille award for lifetime achievements.
In 1999, Loren was listed by the American Film Institute on AFI's 100 Years... 100 Stars as #21 of 25 American female screen legends of all time. In 2002, she was honored by the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) at its annual Anniversary Gala and was inducted into its Italian American Hall of Fame. In 2009, the Guinness Book of World Records recognized her as "Italy's Most Awarded Actress".
In 1991, the Republic of France awarded her a Distinction of la Légion d'honneur (the Legion of Honor) with the grade of Chevalier (Knight). In 1994, she was awarded with the Honorary Golden Bear at the 44th Berlin International Film Festival. In 1997, Loren was invested Cavaliere di Gran Croce Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana (Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic). In 2010, she was awarded the Praemium Imperiale by the Imperial Family of Japan on behalf of the Japan Art Association.
Loren was born in the Clinica Regina Margherita in Rome, daughter of an Arbereshe-Italian couple Romilda Villani (1914-1991) and Riccardo Scicolone, a construction engineer. Scicolone refused to marry Villani, leaving her, a piano teacher and aspiring actress, without support. Loren's parents had another child together, her sister Anna Maria Villani Scicolone, in 1938. Loren has two younger paternal half-brothers, Giuliano and Giuseppe. Romilda, Loren, and Maria lived with Loren's grandmother in Pozzuoli, near Naples, to survive.
During World War II, the harbour and munitions plant in Pozzuoli was a frequent bombing target of the Allies. During one raid, as Loren ran to the shelter, she was struck by shrapnel and wounded in the chin. After that, the family moved to Naples, where they were taken in by distant relatives.
After the war, Loren and her family returned to Pozzuoli. Grandmother Luisa opened a pub in their living room, selling homemade cherry liquor. Villani played the piano, Maria sang and Loren waited on tables and washed dishes. The place was very popular with the American GIs stationed nearby.
When she was 14 years old, Loren 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 Mervyn LeRoy's 1951 film Quo Vadis, launching her career as a motion picture actress. She eventually changed her name to Sophia Loren.
After being credited professionally as Sofia Lazzaro, she began using her current stage name in 1952's La Favorita. Her first starring role was in Aida (1953), for which she received critical acclaim. After playing the lead role in Two Nights with Cleopatra (1953), her breakthrough role was in The Gold of Naples (1954), directed by Vittorio De Sica. Too Bad She's Bad, also released in 1954, became the first of many films in which Loren co-starred with Marcello Mastroianni. Over the next three years she acted in many films such as Scandal in Sorrento (1955) and Lucky to Be a Woman (1956). In 1957, Loren's star had begun to rise in Hollywood, with the films Boy on a Dolphin (her U.S. film debut), Legend of the Lost with John Wayne, and The Pride and the Passion in which she starred opposite Cary Grant and Frank Sinatra.
Loren became an international film star with a five-picture contract with Paramount Pictures in 1958. Among her films at this time were 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 as a blonde for the first time.
In 1961, she starred in Vittorio De Sica's Two Women, a stark, gritty story of a mother who is raped while trying to protect her daughter in war-torn Italy. Originally cast as the daughter, Loren fought against type and was re-cast as the mother (actress Eleonora Brown would portray the daughter). Loren's performance earned her many awards, including the Cannes Film Festival's best performance prize, and an Academy Award for Best Actress, the first major Academy Award for a non-English-language performance and to an Italian actress. She won 22 international awards for Two Women. The film proved to be extremely well accepted by the critics and it was a huge commercial success.
Loren is 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." However, on the December 20, 2009, episode of CBS News Sunday Morning, Loren denied ever saying the line.
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. In 1965, she received a second Academy Award nomination for her performance in Marriage Italian-Style.
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 (1960) with Clark Gable, Vittorio De Sica's triptych Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow (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.
Loren received four Golden Globe Awards between 1964 and 1977 as "World Film Favorite - Female."
Mid-career and musical recordings
Once she became a mother, Loren worked less. Most of her acting during the next two decades was in Italian features. During the 1970s, she was paired with Richard Burton in the last De Sica-directed movie, The Voyage (1974), and a remake of the film Brief Encounter (1974). In 1976 she starred in The Cassandra Crossing, a disaster film featuring such veteran stars as Richard Harris, Martin Sheen, and Ava Gardner. She also co-starred with Marcello Mastroianni in Ettore Scola's A Special Day (1977), an Italian film for which she was nominated for several awards. Loren then starred in the Hollywood thrillers Brass Target (1978), set during World War II, and Firepower (1979), that had a moderate success. In 1980, Loren portrayed herself, as well as her mother, in a made-for-television biopic adaptation of her autobiography titled Sophia Loren: Her Own Story. Actresses Ritza Brown and Chiara Ferrari played Loren at younger ages. In 1981, she became the first female celebrity to launch her own perfume, Sophia, and a brand of eyewear followed soon thereafter. 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 fact, Bill Moore, then employed at Pickle Packers International advertising department, sent her a pink pickle-shaped trophy for being "the prettiest lady in the prettiest pickle". She acted infrequently during the 1980s and turned down the role of Alexis Carrington in 1981 on the TV series Dynasty and although she was set to star in thirteen episodes of CBS' Falcon Crest in 1984 as Angela Channing's half-sister Francesca Gioberti, negotiations fell through at the last moment and the role instead went to Gina Lollobrigida. Sophia, preferring to devote more time to raising her sons. In 1988 she starred in the miniseries The Fortunate Pilgrim.
Loren has 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.
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. She presented Federico Fellini with his Honorary Oscar. In 2009 Loren stated on Larry King Live that Fellini had planned to direct her in a film shortly before his death in 1993.
Throughout the 1990s and 2000s, Loren was selective about choosing her films and ventured into various areas of business, including cook books, eyewear, jewellery and perfume.
She received a Golden Globe nomination for her performance in Robert Altman's film Ready to Wear (1994), co-starring Julia Roberts.
In the comedy Grumpier Old Men (1995), Loren played a femme fatale opposite Walter Matthau, Jack Lemmon, and Ann-Margret. The film was a box-office success and became Loren's biggest U.S hit in years.
In 2001, Loren received a Special Grand Prix of the Americas Award at the Montreal World Film Festival for her body of work. She filmed two projects in Canada during this time: the independent film Between Strangers (2002), directed by her son Edoardo and co-starring Mira Sorvino, and the television miniseries Lives of the Saints (2004).
In 2009, after five years off the set and fourteen years since she starred in a prominent US theatrical film, Loren starred in Rob Marshall's film version of Nine, based on the Broadway musical that tells the story of a director whose midlife crisis causes him to struggle to complete his latest film; he is forced to balance the influences of numerous formative women in his life, including his deceased mother. Loren was Marshall's first and only choice for the role. The film also stars Daniel Day-Lewis, Penelope Cruz, Kate Hudson, Marion Cotillard, and Nicole Kidman. As a part of the cast she received her first nomination for a Screen Actors Guild Award.
In 2010, Loren played her own mother in a two-part Italian television miniseries about her early life, directed by Vittorio Sindoni, entitled La Mia Casa È Piena di Specchi (translated My House Is Full of Mirrors), based on the memoir written by her sister Maria.
Loren's primary residence has been in Geneva, Switzerland since late 2006. She also owns homes in Los Angeles and New York.
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 the team won.
Loren posed scantily-clad at 72 for the 2007 Pirelli Calendar along with such actresses as Penelope Cruz and Hilary Swank.
Marriage and family
Loren first met Carlo Ponti in 1950 when she was 15 and he was 37. They married on September 17, 1957. However, Ponti was still officially married to his first wife Giuliana under Italian law because Italy did not recognize divorce at that time. The couple had their marriage annulled in 1962 to escape bigamy charges. In 1965, Ponti obtained a divorce from Giuliana in France, allowing him to marry Loren on April 9, 1966. They later became French citizens after their application was approved by then French President Georges Pompidou.
The couple had two sons: Carlo Ponti Jr. (born December 29, 1968) and Edoardo Ponti (born January 6, 1973).
Loren remained married to Carlo Ponti until his death on January 10, 2007 of pulmonary complications.
When asked in a November 2009 interview if she is ever likely to marry again, Loren replied "No, never again. It would be impossible to love anyone else."
Her daughters-in-law are Sasha Alexander and Andrea Meszaros. Loren has three grandchildren: Lucia Ponti (born May 12, 2006), Vittorio Ponti (born April 3, 2007). and Leonardo Fortunato (born December 20, 2010).
|1950||I Am the Capataz||Secretary of the Dictator|
|1950||Barbablu's Six Wives||Girl kidnapped|
|1950||I Devote, Thee||A popular to the party of piedigrotta|
|1950||Hearts at Sea||Extra||Uncredited|
|1951||White Leprosy||A girl in the boardinghouse|
|1951||Owner of the Vapor||Ballerinetta|
|1951||Magician for Force||The bride|
|1951||Quo Vadis||Lygia's slave||Uncredited|
|1951||It's Him!... Yes! Yes!||Odalisca|
|1951||Anna||Night club assistant||Uncredited|
|1952||And Arrived the Accordatore||Amica di Giulietta|
|1952||I Dream of Zorro||Conchita||As Sofia Scicolone|
|1953||The Country of Campanelli||Bonbon|
|1953||Pilgrim of Love|
|1953||We Find Ourselves in Arcade||Marisa|
|1953||Two Nights with Cleopatra||Cleopatra/Nisca|
|1953||Girls Marked Danger||Elvira|
|1953||Good Folk's Sunday||Ines|
|1953||Africa Under the Seas||Barbara Lama|
|1954||Un giorno in pretura||Anna|
|1954||The Anatomy of Love||The girl|
|1954||Poverty and Nobility||Gemma|
|1954||The Gold of Naples||Sofia||Segment "Pizze a Credito"|
|1954||Too Bad She's Bad||Lina Stroppiani|
|1955||The Sign of Venus||Agnese Tirabassi|
|1955||The Miller's Beautiful Wife||Carmela|
|1955||The River Girl||Nives Mongolini|
|1955||Scandal in Sorrento||Donna Sofia|
|1956||Lucky to Be a Woman||Antonietta Fallari|
|1957||Boy on a Dolphin||Phaedra|
|1957||The Pride and the Passion||Juana|
|1957||Legend of the Lost||Dita|
|1958||Desire Under the Elms||Anna Cabot|
|1958||The Black Orchid||Rose Bianco||Volpi Cup|
|1959||That Kind of Woman||Kay|
|1960||Heller in Pink Tights||Angela Rossini|
|1960||It Started in Naples||Lucia Curio||Nominated Golden Globe Award for Best Actress Motion Picture Musical or Comedy|
|1960||The Millionairess||Epifania Parerga|
|1960||A Breath of Scandal||Princess Olympia|
|1962||Madame Sans-Gêne||Catherine Hubscher, said "Madame Sans-Gêne"|
|1962||Boccaccio '70||Zoe||Segment "La Riffa"|
|1963||Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow||Adelina Sbaratti/Anna Molteni/Mara||David di Donatello for Best Actress|
|1964||The Fall of the Roman Empire||Lucilla|
|1964||Marriage Italian-Style||Filumena Marturano||
|1965||Lady L||Lady Louise Lendale/Lady L|
|1967||A Countess from Hong Kong||Natascha|
|1967||More Than a Miracle||Isabella Candeloro|
|1968||Ghosts - Italian Style||Maria Lojacono|
|1971||Lady Liberty||Maddalena Ciarrapico|
|1971||The Priest's Wife||Valeria Billi|
|1972||Man of La Mancha||Aldonza/Dulcinea|
|1973||The Sin||Hermana Germana|
|1974||The Voyage||Adriana de Mauro||
|1974||Brief Encounter||Anna Jesson|
|1976||The Cassandra Crossing||Jennifer Rispoli Chamberlain|
|1977||A Special Day||Antoinette||
|1978||Blood Feud||Titina Paterno|
|1978||Brass Target||Mara/cameo role|
|1979||Firepower||Adele Tasca/cameo role|
|1980||Sophia Loren: Her Own Story||herself/Romilda Villani (her mother)|
|1986||Courage||Marianna Miraldo||Television film|
|1988||The Fortunate Pilgrim||Lucia||Television miniseries|
|1990||Saturday, Sunday and Monday||Rosa Priore|
|1994||Prêt-à-Porter||Isabella de la Fontaine||
|1995||Grumpier Old Men||Maria Sophia Coletta Ragetti|
|2001||Francesca e Nunziata||Francesca Montorsi|
|2004||Too Much Romance... It's Time for Stuffed Peppers||Maria|
|2005||Lives of the Saints||Teresa Innocente|
|2010||My House Is Full of Mirrors||Romilda Villani|
|2011||Todos contra Juan 2||Herself||Argentinian television sitcom|
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- Carlo Ponti, Husband to Sophia Loren, Dead at 94 from Fox News 10 January 2007
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- Template error: argument title is required.
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- Interview with Bill Boggs