Valentina Cortese (1923 - 2019)

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Obituary

Valentina Cortese (Getty/Mondadori Portfolio) Valentina Cortese in the 2019 Memorials Photo Gallery Enlarged Photo
Valentina Cortese was a cinema legend in her native Italy, gaining international acclaim in Italian films in the 1940s, which led to her signing a contract with 20th Century Fox. She starred in 1951’s “The House on Telegraph Hill” with American actor Richard Basehart, with whom she married that same year. She received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress in 1975 for her role as a fading alcoholic movie star in Francois Truffaut’s “Day for Night.” Cortese also appeared in films directed by cinema legends Frederico Fellini and Michaelangelo Antonioni. A fashion icon, she was known for wearing elaborate scarfs around her head.

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