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The 4 Roles That Defined Sophia Loren's Career

Image: The 4 Roles That Defined Sophia Loren's Career
(Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 15 May 2015 12:39 PM

Italian actress Sophia Loren is known for her sultry voice and beautiful face, but the star showed serious acting chops in her film roles.

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Her film credits include American, Italian, and French movies, many of which have won awards, including two Academy Awards, five Golden Globes, and a slew of smaller recognitions. Here are four of Loren's roles that defined the famous actress' career.

1. "Two Women"
(1960)
This Italian film portrays the efforts of a mother, played by Loren, to care for her daughter during World War II. The story mirrored Loren's own childhood growing up poor in an impoverished Italian city during that same era.

The movie catapulted Loren to stardom and the actress won her first Academy Award. The win was groundbreaking as it was the first Oscar given to a foreign film.

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Loren credits the movie with transforming her entire career. She told Vanity Fair, "before I made 'Two Women,' I was a performer. Afterward, I was an actress."

2. "Yesterday, Today, And Tomorrow"
(1963)
Another Oscar-winning foreign film, "Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow" features three separate stories, each exploring women and the power of sexuality. Loren plays the roles of all three women. As Adelina, for example, Loren concocts a wild scheme to avoid jail time for selling cigarettes illegally.

The film perhaps most vividly captures the electricity between Loren and frequent co-star Marcello Mastroianni, Vanity Fair noted.

3. "Gold of Naples"
(1954)

This Italian movie cemented Loren's status as an emerging young film star. The movie features vignettes depicting life in Naples, director Vittoria De Sica's childhood home. Loren plays a woman who sells pizza, but must act quickly when she loses her wedding ring.

The movie connected Loren to De Sica, who took her under his wing and taught her to act. "Under his inspired guidance, she came into her own," Vanity Fair said.

4. "Houseboat" (1958)

In this movie, which marked Loren's second time co-starring with actor Cary Grant, Loren plays an elegant, mischievous woman who pretends to be a poor Italian to win a job as housekeeper for a widower, played by Grant. Vanity Fair called the movie "her most appealing American film."

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Italian actress Sophia Loren is known for her sultry voice and beautiful face, but the star showed serious acting chops in her film roles.
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Friday, 15 May 2015 12:39 PM
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