Sophia Loren had a career in Italian films from the age of 14. In the late 1950s, she made her Hollywood debut in The Pride and the Passion, with Frank Sinatra and Cary Grant.

In 1961, she won the Best Actress Oscar – the first ever artist to get such an award for a foreign language performance – for Two Women. She was awarded a clutch of other Best Actress awards for that film, too, including one from Cannes. The sultry brunette’s success continued throughout the 1960s with films such as El Cid, Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, and A Countess from Hong Kong. She also found time to sing pop duets with Peter Sellers and chair the Cannes jury.

In the 1970s, Loren moved back to her native Italy to raise a family, but still kept her hand in with several film appearances, including a remake of Brief Encounter. Her screen time became briefer during the ‘80s and ‘90s, as she occupied herself with family life and business interests – cosmetics, cookbooks and jewellery – but she did score a big hit with Grumpier Old Men, which co-starred fellow screen veterans Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau, and Ann-Margret.

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