‘Queen of Italian cinema’ Monica Vitti dies at age 90

ROME — Monica Vitti, the versatile motion picture star of Michelangelo Antonioni’s “L’Avventura” and other Italian alienation films of the 1960s, and later a top comic actress, has died. She was 90.

Her death was announced Wednesday on Twitter by a former tradition minister, Walter Veltroni, who said he experienced been questioned to talk her loss of life by her husband, the photographer Roberto Russo.

“Goodbye to the queen of Italian cinema,” the present society minister, Dario Franceschini, wrote in a statement.

Vitti had been out of the public spotlight for several years, dwelling quietly in Rome with her husband. She reportedly endured from a sort of dementia.

In her glamour days in the 1960s, she was ideal acknowledged for her starring roles in “L’Avventura,” “La Notte,” “Eclisse” (“Eclipse”) and “Red Desert,” all movies directed by Antonioni, her lover at that time. The two had been regular targets of paparazzi.

“L’Avventura” received her worldwide attention and praise for her job as an icy neat lady drifting into a romantic relationship with the lover of her lacking girlfriend. In “Red Desert,” the very last of the cycle, she performs a lady suffering from a deep, elusive neurosis as she struggled to deal with a reworked industrial environment.

Vitti’s blond hair and blue eyes set her apart from common Mediterranean display stars these as the brown-haired Sophia Loren.

Antonioni himself paid tribute to her general performance at a particular screening in New York’s Museum of Present day Art in 1999 to mark completion of a restoration project for Italian film.

“The protagonist, Giuliana, goes through a profound personal crisis for the reason that of her lack of ability to adapt,” he mentioned, in remarks examine by his spouse, Enrica.

Right after Vitti’s marriage with Antonioni finished, they didn’t operate together all over again right up until 1980. At that level, she improved concentration sharply and started building comedies, working with major directors and some of Italy’s major actors, together with Alberto Sordi, a tragi-comic 1, in films whose figures typically personified Italians’ strengths and foibles.

When several of the movies failed to gain global distribution or acclaim, her performances have been greeted with good results at household.

In 1970, Vitti starred with Marcello Mastroianni in Ettore Scola’s romantic comedy “Dramma della gelosia” (“The Pizza Triangle”). In 1974, she received the equivalent of an Italian Oscar, a David di Donatello award, for very best actress in Sordi’s “Polvere di Stelle,” just one of five such prizes in her vocation.

She starred in Luis Bunuel’s “Le Fantome de la liberte” (“The Phantom of Liberty”) in 1974, a surrealistic treatment method of center-course hypocrisies, viewed as her last major movie.

Her flexibility distinguished her from other actresses of her period of time.

In a memorable scene in “Amore mio aiutami” (“Help me, my love”), she and Sordi roll in the sand buying and selling slaps and punches. In just one of her only two English-language movies, she discovered herself in a spy spoof with Terence Stamp and Dirk Bogarde in the 1966 “Modesty Blaise.”

Vitti was born as Maria Luisa Ceciarelli in Rome in 1931. As a teenager, she appeared in amateur phase productions, then analyzed as an actor in Rome’s National Academy of Remarkable Arts. Her initially movie part was in Scola’s “Ridere Ridere Ridere” (“Laugh Laugh Laugh”) in 1954. Her past was “Scandalo Segreto” in 1989, which she wrote, directed and starred in.

Below very last community appearance was in 2002 for the premiere of “Notre Dame de Paris.”

In 1995, the Venice Movie Pageant awarded her a Golden Lion award for job accomplishment.

Italian Leading Mario Draghi remembered Vitti as “an actress of fantastic irony and extraordinary expertise, who won above generations of Italians with her spirit, bravura and natural beauty. She brought prestige to the Italian cinema all around the globe.”


Victor L. Simpson retired from The Related Press in 2013. Colleen Barry contributed from Milan.

Eleanore Beatty

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