Along with Sophia Loren and Claudia Cardinale, Lollobrigida was one of the great divas of Italian post-war cinema and stood in front of the camera with the biggest film stars. In reference to one of her films, she has long been called the “most beautiful woman in the world”.
Photo gallery: Gina Lollobrigida: Her life, her films
“Lollo” shot more than 60 films
Born on July 4, 1927 east of Rome, “Lollo”, another nickname, starred in more than 60 films, the last of which was more than 20 years ago. Gina Lollobrigida gained international fame through the historical film “Fanfan, der Husar” (1952). Numerous appearances in international cinema productions followed until the end of the 1960s. She is unforgettable in her role as the beautiful gypsy Esmeralda alongside Anthony Quinn in Jean Delannoy’s Hugo film adaptation “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame” (1956).
In 1961, Lollobrigida was named Favorite International Actress at the Golden Globe Awards. She also received several Italian film awards and Bambis in Germany. At the same time, the beautiful Italian became a worldwide sex symbol. No fewer than 6,000 front pages were dedicated to “Lollo”.
During the 1970s Lollobrigida then temporarily disappeared from the screen and devoted himself increasingly to photography and sculpture. In 1984 she sporadically returned to acting, including the role of Francesca Gioberti for several episodes of the American television series “Falcon Crest”.
Lollobrigida was also briefly active politically. In 1999, Lollobrigida ran as a candidate for Romano Prodi’s electoral alliance I Democratici (The Democrats) for the European Parliament, but clearly missed the entry. Despite her advanced age, she ran for the ranks of the anti-establishment party Italia sovrana e popolare in the last Italian parliamentary elections last September. In this case, too, she does not make the hoped-for leap into the Senate.
Besides politics, Lollobrigida hasn’t had much luck in love either. In recent years, the diva has hit the headlines because of a war of roses with her 34-year-old Spanish ex-fiancé Javier Rigau Rifols. Rifols was investigated for allegations of fraud.
Longtime assistant under suspicion
The marriage to the Yugoslavian doctor Milko Skofic, which ended in 1949 and later failed, was the son of Andrea Milko Jr., with whom she later fell out and who then managed to get a financial guardian placed in front of his mother because of her mental state. A central figure in Lollobrigida’s son’s argument is Andrea Piazzola, a man in his early 30s who is accused of manipulating the diva. Piazzola was the actress’ assistant for several years. He was suspected of taking advantage of an unsound person. From 2013 to 2018 he is said to have stolen part of the diva’s fortune. The trial of the man is still ongoing in Rome.
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