A tribute to Anita Ekberg…
Born in Sweden in 1931 she began her adult life as a beauty queen, winning the Miss Sweden title before flying to America to take part in the Miss Universe show in 1951. Although she did not win she managed to secure a contract with Universal Studios who trained her in all aspects of acting which led to her first small role two years later in two Abbott and Costello films.
Ekberg was a stunning woman, easily a match for Monroe, Loren, Bardot and Andress. Appearing in more than forty films in a career spanning five decades she caught the eye of all of the leading directors and leading actors of the fifties and sixties. The list is impressive, John Wayne and Lauren Bacall to Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, Bob Hope, Romy Schneider, Sophia Loren and perhaps most importantly, Marcello Mastroianni in her finest role in La Dolce Vita.
It was her role as the ‘unobtainable woman’ in Fellini’s 1960 smash hit, La Dolce Vita which truly propelled her onto the big screen winning many plaudits in Europe and the United States. The vision of her walking through the Trevi Fountain in Rome in a strapless black dress secured her status as a worldwide sex symbol and to this day remains one of the most iconic movie scenes of all time.
Ekberg seldom towed the line, she was confident and carefree, sometimes to the point of detriment for her career. She married twice, her second marriage ended in 1975 and she never had children. In later years her health and income dwindled to the point where she asked for financial help from the Fellini Foundation, itself, struggling to survive. It is a sad end to a woman who one would expect to have fared better in life.
There are hundreds of glorious images of Anita Ekberg, she defined the classic look of the Hollywood actress of her time with her voluptuous figure, long hair and a look which could melt a million hearts.
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