back to top
Celebrity

Anita Ekberg, Star Of "La Dolce Vita," Dies At 83

The Swedish-born actress, who became famous for the 1960 Federico Fellini film where she walks in the Trevi Fountain, died in Italy on Sunday.

Posted on

Actress Anita Ekberg died Sunday in Italy at the age of 83, her lawyer confirmed.

October, 2010
TIZIANA FABI/AFP / Getty Images

October, 2010

She died after complications with a a longtime illness, CNN reported.

Born in Malmo, Sweden in 1931 to a harbor master, Ekberg was the sixth of eight children.

circa 1955
Silver Screen Collection / Getty Images

circa 1955

She was crowned Miss Sweden in 1950 and shortly afterwards landed a modeling contract in the U.S.

Nov. 15, 1955
AP Photo

Nov. 15, 1955

She appeared in more than 50 movies, the first being 1953's Abbott and Costello Go to Mars. In 1956, she won a Golden Globe as a promising newcomer.

Circa 1955.
Silver Screen Collection / Getty Images

Circa 1955.

In 1960, Ekberg played Sylvia Rank, the unattainable dream woman, in Federico Fellini's La Dolce Vita, which would make her internationally famous.

Nov. 29, 1960
AP Photo/Mario Torrisi, file

Nov. 29, 1960

Watch the famous scene from La Dolce Vita where Sylvia strolls in Rome's iconic Trevi Fountain:

View this video on YouTube

The fountain scene was controversial for its overt sexuality, with the Vatican condemning it, but the outspoken actress said: "I'm very proud of my breasts, as every woman should be."

1955
Archive Photos / Getty Images

1955

After her breakthrough role in La Dolce Vita, Ekberg made Italy her home.

An image of Ekberg is projected onto the Trevi Fountain in Rome on September 27, 2003.
Max Rossi / Reuters

An image of Ekberg is projected onto the Trevi Fountain in Rome on September 27, 2003.

After playing a woman in Fellini's film who was famously hounded by the paparazzi, the same happened to her. She was often in the headlines for her romances, which included Frank Sinatra, Errol Flynn, and Yul Brynner.

Yul Brynner visits Anita Ekberg on set of the film Artists And Models in 1955.
Archive Photos / Getty Images

Yul Brynner visits Anita Ekberg on set of the film Artists And Models in 1955.

When she was 24, she married British actor Anthony Steel in Florence. The couple stayed together from 1956 to 1959. She later married American actor Rik Van Nutter, from 1963 to 1975.

1966
Gianni Ferrari

1966

She later appeared in two other Fellini films, The Clowns (1962) and Intervista (1987). Her final film appearance was in 1996's Bambola, a French-Spanish-Italian erotic melodrama directed by Bigas Luna.

Ekberg and Italian movie director Federico Fellini stand talking in a Rome suburb in May 29, 1961
AP Photo/Ivan Crosceno, File

Ekberg and Italian movie director Federico Fellini stand talking in a Rome suburb in May 29, 1961

The best things at three price points