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Renata Vanni

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Vanni, Renata
Renata Vanni, 94, died February 19 of natural causes in Los Angeles. Born in Naples Italy, Ms. Vanni became a star in New York in the Italian Theater and on Italian radio. In the late 40s she was brought to Los Angeles under contract to Warner Brothers. She excelled in comedy and was always compared to Anna Magnani for her depth of passion and emotion she exhibited on screen. She played the unforgettable role of the Italian widow in William Wellman's classic film, "Westward the Women." Throughout her long career she went on to appear in scores of major feature films including "Three Coins in the Fountain," "Seven Little Foys," "Once is Not Enough," "Hell on Frisco Bay," "A Patch of Blue," "A Dream of Kings," "Pay or Die," "The Idol Maker," and Anne Bancroft's "Fatso." Her expressive eyes and gentle face made her a much sought actress appearing in all the major live television shows such as "Lux Video Theatre," Alcoa Presents etc., then moving on to episodic television shows doing comedy as well as dramatic roles. She frequently appeared on such successful shows as "Gunsmoke," "Love Boat" and "Mod Squad" as well as in a recurring role as Marlo Thomas' landlady on "That Girl." Before her retirement in 1993 she played a leading role in the features, "Lady in White" and "Wait Until Spring," "Bandini" with Joe Mantegna and Faye Dunaway. She is survived by her actress daughter Dr. Delia Salvi who is an author and professor at UCLA in the Film and Television Department. Services are at 11:00 A.M. Tuesday, February 24, 204 at Westwood Village Memorial Park, 1218 Glendon Avenue, Los Angeles, CA (310-474-1579).
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Feb. 24, 2004
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