Significant People in Sophia Loren's Life and Career

Q - S

"Sophia Loren, aside from being extremely beautiful physically, is one of the most exciting, witty woman on this planet." - Tippi Hedren

Anthony Quinn

Dino Risi

Maximilian Schell

Emilio Schuberth

Maria Scicolone

Riccardo Scicolone

Ettore Scola

Tazio Secchiaroli

Peter Sellers

Omar Sharif

Frank Sinatra

Mario Soldati

Alberto Sordi

Barbra Streisand

QUINN, Anthony (Chihuahua, Mex., 1915 - Boston, MA, 2001)
American actor who played three times opposite Sophia, namely in Attila, The Black Orchid and Heller in Pink Tights. Sophia never really liked him for several reasons. Quinn was quoted as saying upon his return from Italy to America in 1955 that "Italian film sirens should think more about their acting and less of their bosom". He also complained in 1959 that it was no fun working with a leading lady who spent more time with her secretary than with him. Quinn also appears in the documentary Sophia Loren: Actress Italian Style. With hindsight, a few years before he died his words were: "When she acts she is breathless, she is really breathless. She's glorious, magnificent."

RISI, Dino (Milano, 1917 - Rome, 2008)
Italian director and undisputed master of Italian caustic comedy. He directed Sophia in Pane, amore e..., Il segno di Venere, La moglie del prete and La Ciociara (TV). He wrote in 2004 an autobiography called I miei mostri. "I have had a special liking for Sophia. I remember we used to call her Miss Anticamera for the long hours she would spend, patiently, i front of the Ponti-De Laurentiis studios in Rome, hoping for a small role. Even at that time, she was natural and had a princess look."

RIVOLTA, Nella (Milan, - )
Woman Sophia's father, Riccardo Scicolone, ended up marrying - after getting her pregnant - instead of Romilda, Sophia's mother. She had two sons with Riccardo, Giuliano and Giuseppe. Sophia met her only once, at Cinecittà, during the casting selection of Quo Vadis? She brought Sophia's sister Maria to court in July 1955 in a case aimed at taking away her name - Scicolone - after Sophia I bought it from their father in 1953. She and Riccardo divorced in the early 1970's.

ROSI, Francesco (Naples, 1922 - Rome, 2015)
Considered a master film director in Italy without the international fame of his peers, he directed Sophia and Omar Sharif in the beautifully filmed tale C'era una volta. Other famous films by Rosi are Salvatore Giuliano, Il caso Mattei, Lucky Luciano, Cristo si è fermato a Napoli and Carmen.

SCHELL, Maximilian (Vienna, 1930 - Innbruck, Austria, 2014)
Austrian actor known for his role in Judgment in Nuremberg - for which he won an Oscar - he played opposite Sophia in De Sica's film The Condemned of Altona. Even though he feels the film is custom-made for Sophia they get along well and rumors have them flirting together, which has Peter Seller's jealousy turned into hatred for Sophia's co-star. Schell is the godfather of actress Angelina Jolie, daughter of actor Jon Voight.

SCHUBERTH, Emilio (Naples, 1904 - Rome, 1972)

Couturier of royal families and movie stars, Schuberth was the most popular fashion designer in Rome at the start of Sophia's career. His personal style was recognizable in his precious, inflated and adorned cocktail or evening dresses. At his couture house on via XX Settembre in Rome, he designed for some of the world's most celebrated and elegant women, including Sophia, Brigitte Bardot, Saroya, Gina Lollobrigida, Ava Gardner, Wanda Osiris and Valentina Cortese. Schuberth dressed Sophia from 1954 until she switched to Dior in 1958. He appeared in the film Era lui... sì! sì!

SCICOLONE, Maria (Pozzuoli, 1938 - )
Sophia's younger sister, born without a name, she married jazz pianist and ex dictator Benito Mussolini's son Romano Mussolini in 1962. They had two daughters, Alessandra (1962) and Elisabetta (1967). She remarried to Magid Tamiz, an Iranian heart surgeon, in 1977. She published in 2004 an autobiography called "La mia casa è piena di specchi". The two sisters have always been very close and Maria was present on the set of many films starring Sophia.

SCICOLONE, Riccardo (Rome, 1907 - Rome, 1976)
Sophia and Maria's natural father. He always refused to marry Romilda and did not want to recognize her daughter Maria until Sophia paid him one million lire in 1955 to have her sister's name legalized. He married twice, first with Nella Rivolta in the late 1930's with whom he had two sons and then early in the 1970s with German-born fashion model Carola Hack. Sophia, Maria and Romilda are present at Scicolone's bedside when he passes away. "I hated my father all my life but in his final days I forgave him for all the suffering he caused us. As you grow older, marry, na have children of you own, you learn and forget. I do not forget easily, but I do forgive."

SCOLA, Ettore (Trevico, 1931 - Rome, 2016)
One of Italy's most respected directors, he reached his peak with Una giornata paricolare, a close confrontation between a man an a woman, featured in Loren and Mastroianni both cast against type. He appears in the documentary Cercando Sofia released in 2004. Sophia is still grateful to him for one of her favorite roles she's ever had in a movie. "A true artist. He gave me one of the most beautiful characters in all my career."

SECCHIAROLI, Tazio (Rome, 1925 - Rome, 1998)
Italian photographer and first paparazzo. He became Sophia's personal photographer in 1964 on the set of Matrimonio all'italiana as he was Mastroianni's personal photographer. For years he was the only photographer allowed to take private pictures of Sophia. There was even a time when Sophia would not sign a contract that didn`t provide for Secchiaroli and other members of her entourage to come with her. Several books featuring Sophia’s pictures have been published, namely The Greatest of the Paparazzi and  Sophia Loren in 2003, published by his son. "Sophia always wants to see every picture that's taken of her. She even checks every contact and every print of the stills that are made on the set or on location." (Secchiaroli)

SELLERS, Peter (Southsea, 1925 - London, 1980)
British actor and photographer; not yet well known when he plays opposite Sophia in The Millionairess he totally falls for Sophia and will remain for the rest of his life. Part of his fanatic love can be seen in The Live and Death of Peter Sellers released in 2004 in which Sophia's role is played by Sonia Aquino. Sellers and Sophia recorded in 1960 several songs, including Goodness, Gracious Me, which hit the top four in the UK charts.

SHARIF, Omar (Alexandria, Egypt, 1932 - Cairo, Egypt, 2015)
American actor born in Egypt who played in The Fall of the Roman Empire and opposite Sophia in C'era una volta, They get along really well and the press spreads the rumour that they have an affair after he proclaims he is in love with Sophia during the shooting of their first movie together. In Sophia's opinion, he is one of the most charming men she has ever worked with. In the documentary Cercando Sofia he describes Sophia as "the most completely feminine woman you will ever meet".

SHAW, Sam (New York City, 1912 - 1999)
Independent on-set photographer who chronicled Sophia from 1956, when she was rehearsing for The Pride and the Passion, through the production of Matrimonio all'italiana in 1964. Shaw's candids include portraits in Loren and Ponti's apartment in Rome as well as scenes of their lives in the rented Beverly Hills home during Sophia's stay in Hollywood. A book called Sophia Loren: In the Camera Eye was published in 1979. "Sophia told me once, 'Posing for the camera is a love affair'. And that's true; she falls in love at that moment. The camera loves her and she loves the camera. And the camera can't make a mistake, and she can't make a mistake."

SINATRA, Frank (Hoboken, NJ, 1915 - Los Angeles, CA, 1998)
Legendary American actor and singer; he plays opposite Sophia in The Pride and the Passion. His songs were a source of inspiration and motivation in the rough years Sophia went through. When Sophia Loren was young and innocent, an Italian star who didn’t speak much English, Frank Sinatra would teach her profanities and persuade her to use them in casual conservation. Despite those pranks, Loren thought of Sinatra as a friend for life.

SOLDATI, Mario (Turin, 1906 - Lerici, 1999)
Italian revered novelist and filmmaker, he directed Sophia in La donna del fiume and Gina Lollobrigida in La provinciale, which is known to be his best film. Sophia and Soldati have very different personalities which leads to arguments as Sophia feels safer perhaps for the first time as an actress. At one point, as they are both bent out of shape, Sophia even slaps his face.

SPINOLA, Matteo (Carpi, 1929 - Cetona, 2006)
First an actor in the 1950's, he became with his contribution to La Ciociara as a publicist one of the most famous press agents for post World War II divas. He worked closely with Enrico Lucherini during all his career. By collaborating closely with paparazzi in the 1950's he also contributed to the cat feud between Sophia and Gina Lollorigida.

SORDI, Alberto (Rome, 1920 - Rome 2003)
Though less well-known internationally than some of his compatriots, such as Mastroianni and Gassman, Sordi was one of the funniest and most successful postwar Italan actors. He played with Sophia in È arrivato l'accordatore, Due notti con Cleopatra and Il segno di Venere. When he died Sophia said: "The death of Alberto is one of the saddest things in my life. He was a very good friend even though we worked little together. Alberto just like Totò was our greatest comedy actor. He leaves us with the nostalgy and the melancholy of times gone by." He presented Sophia with a special Donatello award for lifetime achievement in 1999.

STRASBERG, Anna (Caracas, Venezuela, 1939 - )
American actress, born in Venezuela as Ana Mizrahi. She became one of Sophia's best friends after she was introduced by her husband Lee Strasberg, head of the Actor's Studio, who played a part in The Cassandra Crossing. She appeared in two movies, The Fortunate Pilgrim and Aurora, in which her main role, besides her acting role, is to coach young Edoardo Ponti. Sophia cherishes Anna, whom she sometimes calls "my other sister" and she gave several lectures in the 1990's at the Lee Strasberg Institute branch in Los Angeles, founded by the Strasberg couple in 1969. Sophia stayed at her house after being released from a New York City hospital in August 1998. Anna is interviewed in the Biography documentary Sophia, Italian Style. She had two sons: Adam and David.

STREISAND, Barbra (New York City, 1942 - )
Considered one of the most commercially and critically successful entertainers in modern entertainment history, Streisand has had Sophia's admiration for a long time. They met for the first time in London in April 1966 while Streisand was performing in Funny Girl. Sophia would have told her, "If only I could sing like you", to which the singer replied, "If I was as beautiful as you, I wouldn't have to open my month." Streisand's son, Jason Gould, shares a December 29 birthday with Sophia's son Carlo, Jr. as well as a breech brith by caesarean section.


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Updated 05/22/2016