One of the three famous Italian actresses of the second half of the 20th century, who together with Sophia Loren and Gina Lollobrigida They have filled the screens and exported beauty and eroticism all over the world. Claudia Cardinale. CC, you have met all the requirements of a big star.
Born as Claude Joséphine Rose Cardinale in La Goleta, in the capital of Tunisia, when the country was a French protectorate, on April 15, 1938, daughter of Italian parents. She never wanted to be an actress, but at the age of 17 she wins a beauty contest, which includes a trip to the film festival in Venice, which opens the doors to the cinema. In Venice meet the producer Franco Cristaldi who decides to launch it as a new erotic myth, making him interpret 20 films in just four years to make it the ‘Claudia nazonale‘, or simply CC Claudia would marry Cristaldi in 1966.
In the 1960s, she was one of the great and most popular Italian actresses: ‘El bello Antonio’ (1960), by Mauro Bolognini, ‘Austerlitz’ (1960), by Abel Gance, ‘Rocco and his brothers’ (1960), by Luchino Visconti, ‘La Viaccia’ (1960), by Mauro Bolognini, ‘The girl with the suitcase’ (1961), by Valerio Zurlini, ‘Cartouche’, (1961) by Philippe de Broca, ‘Senility’ (1961), by Mauro Bologni, ‘Fellini 8 ½’ (1962) by Federico Fellini ‘El Gatopardo’ (1962), by Luchino Visconti, ‘La chica de Bube’ (1963), by Luigi Comenzini or ‘The indifferent’ (1963), by Francesco Maselli are some of his films from the early 1960s. Both in ‘Rocco and his brothers’ and ‘El Gatopardo’, both directed by Luchino Visconti, had as a partner Alain Delon: The two films were his international release, which allows him to shoot under the orders of great directors such as Blake Edwards in ‘The Pink Panther’ (1964), Henry Hathaway in ‘The Fabulous World of the Circus’ (1964) or Richard Brooks in ‘The Professionals’. Another of his most prominent American work and in which he demonstrates his enormous versatility is the pop-influenced comedy, entitled ‘Don’t make waves’ (1967), from the British Alexander Mackendrick, where he shared a poster with Tony Curtis. He also made his first major foray into the western in ‘Until his time came‘(1968), by Sergio Leone, written by some young people Dario Argento and Bernardo Bertolucci, a film in which Claudia Cardinale plays the prostitute Jill.
After her separation from Franco Cristaldi, she married the actor for the second time Andy Williams and begins to work more and more frequently in American cinema without abandoning his career in Italy. From the seventies, and after her marriage to the Italian director Pasquale Squittieri, reduces his appearances on the big screen and hardly stars in films outside of Europe. It matches again with Visconti in ‘Confidences‘(1974). His films from the 1970s include ‘The oil companies‘(1971), comedy set in the West and shot in Spain with Brigitte Bardot and José Luis López Vázquez; ‘Beautiful, honest, emigrated to Australia wants to marry an untouched girl‘(1971), together with Alberto Sordi, film with which Cardinale won the David de Donatello award; Y ‘Here the adventure begins‘(1975). In 1977 he had a role in the television blockbuster ‘Jesus of Nazareth‘, directed by Franco Zeffirelli and that featured stars like Anthony Quinn, Laurence Olivier, James Mason, Anne Bancroft, Fernando Rey y Olivia Hussey.
In the 1980s, he received the Italian critics award for the best supporting performance for his appearance in ‘The skin‘(1981), adaptation directed by Liliana Cavani from the novel of Curzio Malaparte set during the American landing in Italy that ends with the Second World War. In that decade they also stand out ‘Fitzcarraldo‘ (1982; Werner Herzog), with Klaus Kinski; ‘Enrique IV‘(1984) by Marco Bellocchio, again next to Mastroianni; ‘La Storia’ (1985) by Luigi Comencini, where he rubbed shoulders with Francisco Rabal, Y ‘A man in love‘(1987), starring Peter Coyote and Greta Scacchi. In 1989 Claudia Cardinale participated in the ambitious feature film ‘History of a revolution‘, from Robert Enrico y Richard T. Heffron about the French Revolution, within an extensive cast: Klaus Maria Brandauer, Jane Seymour, Peter Ustinov, Christopher Lee, Georges Corraface…
In 1991 he co-starred with Omar Sharif the movie ‘Mayrig‘ from Henri verneuil, in 1993 he participated with Roberto Benigni in the comedy ‘Son of the Pink Panther’ by Blake Edwards, and in 1999 in the documentary about Kinski titled ‘My intimate enemy‘.
Claudia Cardinale is a progressive woman with strong political convictions. She has always been involved in issues in favor of women and the gay community. She has also always been involved in many humanitarian causes. Today Paris is his home. In February 2002 he received the Golden Bear for his entire career at the Berlinale. He has two children, the eldest, Patrick, was born as a result of a rape that Cardinale suffered when he was only 17 years old and still living in Tunisia and that Cristaldi later adopted him, and the youngest, a daughter (also called Claudia) with Squitieri.
Among his latest films, the one he shot in 2012 under the command of Fernando Trueba, ‘The artist and the model’, next to Jean Rochefort. Claudia Cardinale has published three books: An autobiography entitled ‘Me Claudia, You Claudia‘and a story about his personal and professional relationships with many of his directors and co-stars during his nearly fifty years in show business,’My Stars‘. In her confessions, Cardinale recounted that she laughed at her request. Marlon brando, who tried to seduce her in a hotel in Roma in 1967, and who later repented he repented of that refusal. His daughter Claudia once commented: «Can you imagine? say no to Marlon Brando. What a waste!”. His third book, from 2009, is titled ‘My tunisia‘, and it is a photographic review of the different stages of her life, from her childhood to that moment, going through her first steps as an actress. The story is told from the perspective of maturity and the vision that she now has of the country in which she was born.
“I am not a diva, I am a very normal person,” she has said repeatedly, recalling that “I never wanted to be an actress, I actually wanted to be an explorer, but I have traveled so much the world, that somehow I have seen this wish come true.”