"Sophia Loren is an actress of narrow range, but under skilful direction she is an actress of enormous depth." – Time magazine

Five Miles to Midnight
Paris Premiere


Ponti, Sophia, Levine
Idlewild Airport (New York)
Photo: Ed Giorandino

Maria's Wedding / Romilda
Photo: Pierluigi Praturlon

L'Europeo (Italy)

Fairmont Hotel / Carlo
San Francisco


American Legion

Oscar Night

Photo: Pierluigi Praturlon

Madame Sans-Gêne
French poster

Oscar Party

Photo: Pierluigi Praturlon

Film Revue (West Germany)

Bambi Awards


Condemned of Altona
East Berlin

Sophia and Romilda
Photo: Irving Penn

Idlewild Airport
New York City

The Condemned of Altona
Off Stage
Photo: Pierluigi Pratulon

Carlo in hospital bed

Literary Prize ceremonies

Condemned of Altona Premiere
Biffi Restaurant, Milan
Photo: Giannini Gelmi

Red Cross
Piazza del Popolo, Rome
Photo: Carlo Riccardi

The Condemned of Altona
East Berlin

Sophia and Tony Perkins
Photo: Elliott Erwitt


Five Miles to Midnight

France, December 11, 1961 - February 1962

The World of Sophia Loren
France, Italy, December 1961 - February 1962

The Condemned of Altona
West Germany, East Germany, Italy, May - September


The Victors
Carl Foreman signs Sophia for the movie in April but when he finds out she might be tied up in a possible court case, he feels he has to take precautions and hires other Italian star Rosanna Schiaffino for the role in June.

The VIP's
Originally announced to co-star with Richard Burton, at writer Terence Rattigan's request, Sophia is replaced by Elizabeth Taylor who does not want see her man (Burton) near Sophia stating "Let Sophia stay in Rome."


Boccaccio '70
Milan (Capitol) February 22
The Condemned of Altona
Milan, October 30 (I sequestrati di Altona)
Five Miles to Midnight
Rome, June 30 (Il coltello nella piaga)

Boccaccio '70

New York City (Cinema I & II), June
26 (Boccaccio '70)

Boccaccio '70
Cannes, May 7 (Boccace 70)
Paris, August 29 (Boccace '70)
Madame Sans-Gêne
Paris, May 25
Five Miles to Midnight
  Paris (Colisée), December 12 (Le couteau dans la plaie)

Boccaccio 70
August 3 (Boccaccio 70)
Madame Sans-Gêne
March 23 (Madame Sans-Gêne)
El Cid
May 25 (El Cid)
Five Miles to Midnight
December 21 (Die dritte Dimension)

Madame Sans-Gêne
  Madrid, April 6 (Madame Sans-Gene)

Five Miles to Midnight
Madrid, April 6 (Un abismo entre los dos)
La Ciociara
Madrid, May 14 (Dos mujeres)

Five Miles to Midnight
London, December 13


New York Film Critics Circle
Best Actress Award - January 20
Sophia attends the event at Sardi's restaurant

Bambi Award (West Germany)
Most Popular Foreign Actress, Karlsruhe, May 13

American Legion (France)
Medal for devotion and loyalty - March 9

Bravo Otto (West Germany)
Bronze Award for third most popular actress - March

British Academy Awards (UK)
Best Foreign Actress in La Ciociara - April 5

Oscar (USA)
Best Actress Award for La Ciociara - April 9
Sophia becomes the first and still the only female Oscar winner to win for playing a character in a foreign language film

Victoire Award (France)
Most Popular Actress, Paris

Hollywood's Grauman Chinese Theater (USA)
Hand print - July 26

Caricaturists Society of America (USA)
Most Beautiful Woman of the World, New York City, August 30
"In addition to everything else, she has what must be the most beautiful eyes in the world."


Lux Soaps


Award in New York - January 20
  Chosen Best Actress of 1961 for her role in La Ciociara by the New York Film Critics Circle, Sophia make a quick trip to America in order to attend the award presentation at Sardi's restaurant, on West 44th Street, in the heart of New York's Theater District. She flies back the next day to the set of Five Miles to Midnight in Paris.

Barthet's Hat Collection
- January 10
Sophia is in Paris for the presentation of new hat collection by French milliner Jean Barthet.

Dior Spring Collection - January 29
Sophia takes one day off her filming schedule from the Five Miles to Midnight set and attends Dior fashion show where she meets her designer Marc Bohan.

Boccaccio '70 Premiere - January 22
Sophia flies from Orly to Linate in order to attend the world premiere of Boccaccio '70 in Milan where she is accompanied with her director and friend Vittorio De Sica, Carlo and her sister Maria.

Maria Marries Mussolini - March 3
Sophia's sister, Maria, marries Romano Mussolini, at the Sant'Antonio church in the town of Predappio which is in complete chaos on that day, filled with paparazzi, fascist lunatics and curious onlookers. Romano even faints dead away before the ceremony and is revived by a doctor who injects him a stimulant. Sophia goes to the event despite the Italian government's warning it will try her for bigamy if she returns to her country. To make things worse, as her driver is trying to leave the scene, after the ceremony, Sophia's Rolls-Royce hits a young teacher riding a Vespa who dies from his injuries. "It was a horrible day", says Sophia, "and it took me a long time to recover."

Paris American Legion - March 9
The Paris post of the American Legion awards Sophia, at the mayor's office, a medal for "devotion and unswerving loyalty to our common ideals" Although nobody seems to know why she is getting a medal, the Paris post Vice president says it is because she "furthers Franco-American relations."  "I'm not a soldier", Sophia says, "but I felt like a soldier when he pinned on the medal. I'm very proud."

British Academy Awards - April 5
Sophia is in London for the British Academy Awards where she receives an award for her performance in La ciociara.

Oscar Night - April 10
After staying up all night at her Rome apartment Sophia learns from Cary Grant, who calls her from Los Angeles, that she won the Oscar for Best Actress in La Ciociara. The phone rings throughout the day, with Ines taking messages from Sinatra, Holden, and dozens of film-makers around the world. Memorable live interview with Sophia in pajamas, next to Ponti, in the early hours with Lello Bersani, which implies the two unmarried have slept together. Smoking nervously, Sophia says: "I am still so totally excited that I can't really find the adequate words to express everything I feel in this moment".

Oscar-Winning Party - April 14
In the middle of a bigamy charge crisis, Oscar-winning celebration in Rome is canceled after Italian officials refuse to attend because of Vatican pressure. Only a few personal friends are at Sophia's Rome apartment when Joseph Levine, American distributor of La Ciociara, presents her with the award.

Blood to the Italian Cross - April 15
A crowd of 1,000 form in Rome's Piazza Del Popolo where Sophia, wearing mink, appears to give half a pint of her Neapolitan blood to the Italian Red Cross. Police clear a path for her to the mobile unit used by the Red Cross in a national blood bank campaign.

  Cannes Film Festival - May
Sophia arrives in Nice on May 7 with Romy Schneider who also stars in the movie Boccaccio '70 in a segment directed by Luchino Visconti. A huge gala for the press and industry VIP's is scheduled the same day for the presentation of the film, which opens the festival amid confusion, with Sophia and Romy as the focus point. A tribute to Sophia had been previously announced "to make up for the snub Italy gave
one of its greatest actresses" but is cancelled at the last minute because, according to Festival spokesman, "it is not in the tradition of the festival". Festival dates: May 7 through May 23.

Bambi Award - May 13
Sophia is in Karlsruhe, West Germany, where she and Rock Hudson receive at the Schwarzwaldhalle the Most Popular Foreign Actress/Actor award.

Boccaccio '70 in New York
- July 25
Sophia is at New York City's Four Seasons Hotel attending a party to celebrate the success of Boccaccio '70.

Hollywood's Grauman Chinese Theater - July 26
Radiant and wiggly in a silk dress and smiling sweetly at 700 howling fans, Sophia Loren presses her palms into the gooey cement in the foyer of famed Grauman's Chinese Theater. She follows up with her footprints, pressed in with a twist, and then scrawls an Italian motto: "Solo per sempre" (only forever).

Hollywood Oscar Party - July 26
Party at the Beverly Hills Hotel is given in honor of Sophia for the award she won in April. "I feel like I'm receiving the Oscar on the night every one else got it", Sophia says after being presented the award by Geoffrey
Sturlock, vice president of the Motion Picture Academy. Joe Levine picks up the $10,000-bill for the supper.

Boccaccio '70 in San Francisco - July 27
Sophia is at the Fairmont San Francisco attending a luncheon and a party to celebrate the success of Boccaccio '70.

Literary Prize in Viareggio - August 10
Sophia and Maximilian Schell attend the ceremonies of the Viareggio Literary Prize with Giorgio Bassini as the winner with his novel I giardini dei Finzi Contini.

Condemned of Altona Premiere - October 30
Sophia attends the Italian premiere of her second film of the year under De Sica's direction. Following the screening, Sophia, Carlo, Maximilian Schell and other guests gather at the famous Biffi restaurant near La Scala for a celebration dinner.

Five Miles to Midnight Premieres - December 12-13
Sophia attends both the Paris and the London premieres of the movie.


Amica, Confessioni, Cronaca, Epoca, L'Europeo, La Fiera del Cinema, Incom, Lunapark, Maschere, Oggi, Rotosei, Settimo Giorno, Sorrisi e Canzoni TV, Lo Specchio, Successo, Tempo, Vie Nuove

West Germany
Annabelle, Bild und Funk, Bravo, Bunte Illustrierte, Constanze, Film Revue, Film Spiegel, Frankfurt Illustrierte, Neue Illustrierte, Quick, Revue, Sonne, Stern


Almanach du Rail, Capri, Cinémonde, Festival, Ici Paris, Jeunesse Cinéma, Jours de France, Martini Magazine, Paris Match, La Semaine


Blanco y Negro, Cine en 7 Días, Fotogramas, Gaceta Ilustrada, Garbo, Hola, Lecturas, Marisol, Sissi, Triunfo

Parade, Photoplay, Today, Weekend


Coloroto Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Hollywood Tattler, Movies Today, National Enquirer, Private Affairs, Screen Stories, Show, Time, TV Magazine, Vogue, Whisper

Cine Album, Cine Avance, Cine Radio Actualidad, El Día Magazine, Ecran, Filmelândia, Leo Plan, Mundo Uruguayo, Paquita, Radiolandia, Radiomanía


The World of Sophia Loren
- February 27

TV special broadcast on NBC across America

Cinema d'oggi - April 12
Guest star interviewed by director Mario Blasetti on RAI TV.

Ed Sullivan Show - April 15
Guest appearance


Sophia vs. Bronston over El Cid - January 24
Supreme Court Justice Samuel H. Hofstadter denies an injunction sought by Sophia who claimed she was not receive equal billing with Charlton Heston in a sign advertising her new film "El Cid".

Sophia vs. Bronston, revisited
- February 21
Sophia settles her differences with Bronston over the failure to give her equal billing with Charlton Heston in outdoor sign at the Warner Theater in New York City. The action comes on the eve of a trial in Supreme Court instituted by Sophia.

Oscar Nomination - February 28
TV special The World of Sophia Loren is broadcast the day after the Academy announces Sophia is on the list of nominees for Best Actress. This comes as one of the most powerful publicity coups orchestrated by Sophia's press agents in all career.

- April 15
The day after the canceled Oscar ceremony, Sophia tearfully leaves Rome en route to her chalet in Bürgenstock where she spends Easter before going to Hamburg to shoot De Sica's location scenes of The Condemned of Altona. At Rome's Termini station, Sophia says: "It's not that I expected a state reception type of ceremony. After all, I am a simple girl. But still I had hoped to be honored, not so much as an actress but as an Italian receiving such a high international prize."

Bigamy Charges - June 25
Sophia and Carlo are ordered to stand trial on charges of bigamy. If convicted they can be sentenced to up to five years in prison. The specific charge against Sophia is concurrence in bigamy since she has never been married before.

Proxy Marriage Void - August 31
Mexican proxy wedding is declared void in a Milan court because Ponti was still a married man at the time of the union. His divorce from her former wife is not recognized since divorce is not legal in Italy. It is good news for Sophia who confesses  "it's the most wonderful news I've ever received - more wonderful even than the announcement that I won an Oscar."

Interview with Moravia - September
Freudian analytic interview called This Is Your Life: Sophia Loren with writer Alberto Moravia is published by several magazines around the world:
L'Europeo (Italy), Show (USA), Elle (France).

Birthday - September 20
Sophia celebrates her 28th birthday in Paris, and then flies to Rome where she is greeted by her mother Romilda at the Fiumicino airport.

Ponti Hospitalized - November 6
Carlo is hospitalized in Rome's Villa Carla after hitting his head while he was on Caravelle jet traveling from Paris. His badly cut right ear requires 14 emergency stitches and 45 extra ones in plastic surgery. According to the plastic surgeon's report the operation was successful.

Escapade in Bürgenstock - December
Short solitary holiday in Bürgentock where Sophia can enjoy peace and rest at the end of a hectic Oscar-winning year.

Alessandra Is Born - December 30
Maria Scicolone gives birth to Alessandra nine months after marrying Romano Mussolini. The family lives in a Rome in a house Sophia paid for. Maria's baby girl was born prematurely and Sophia spends hours with her sister as doctors are doing their utmost to save the tiny infant.

New Year's Party - December 31
Sophia, Carlo, Peter Sellers, David Niven and other guests all meet at Vittorio De Sica's house to celebrate the New Year.

Condemned of Altona / De Sica
Photo: Pierluigi Praturlon

Boccaccio premiere / Carlo
Photo: Pierluigi Praturlon

British Film Academy Award

Five Miles to Midnight / Perkins

Cine en 7 Dias (Spain)

La Napoule Castle
Cannes Film Festival

Photo: Edward Quinn

Boccaccio Premiere
Cannes Film Festival

Photo: Edward Quinn

Madame Sans-Gêne
German poster

Grauman's Chinese Theater

Grauman's Chinese Theater
Photo: Jack Albin

Oscar Party
Photo: Marty Cole

Lux Soaps
Swedish publicity

Gare de Lyon

Time (USA)
Illustration: René Robert Bouché

Dior Collection / Chevalier
Photo: Jacques Cuinière

Termini Station
Photo: Mario Torrisi

The Condemned of Altona
Italian poster

Four Seasons Hotel
New York City
Photo: Arty Pomerantz

Five Miles to Midnight
German poster

Greeting Carlo

Winter Holidays
Photo: Pierluigi Praturlon

Cannes Film Festival

1961 Sophia Loren Chronicles 1963

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Updated 11/23/2009