Anita Ekberg, the Swedish actress who gained global fame dancing in Rome's Trevi Fountain in Federico Fellini's film La Dolce Vita, has died aged 83.
The actress passed away at the San Raffaele Rocca di Papa Hospital, a spokeswoman for the Rome-based hospital confirmed. Ms
Ekberg had been hospitalized recently following a series of illnesses, her lawyer Patrizia Ubaldi was cited by the Associated Press as saying.
Ms Ekberg appeared in more than 40 movies and won accolades, including a Golden Globe award. The iconic scene of her dressed in a revealing black dress dancing around the cascading waters of the Trevi Fountain in Fellini’s 1960 film is one of the most celebrated images in cinema history.
“She had the beauty of a young goddess,” the director is quoting as saying of the actress. “The luminous colour of her skin, her clear ice-blue eyes, golden hair, exuberance, joie de vivre, made her into a grandiose creature, extra-terrestrial and at the same time moving and irresistible.”
Ms Ekberg appeared in several films in the 1950s, including the 1955 movie Blood Alley with John Wayne and Lauren Bacall, for which she won a Golden Globe. She also appeared alongside Audrey Hepburn and Henry Fonda in War and Peace in 1956 and earned global fame with La Dolce Vita.
"It was I who made Fellini famous, not the other way around," the film diva was quoted as saying about La Dolce Vita.
Anita Marianne Ekberg was born on September 29th, 1931, in Malmo, southern Sweden, to working-class parents. She grew up with seven brothers and sisters. Ms Ekberg spent her later years living in seclusion in a villa outside Rome. She was married to British actor Anthony Steel during the 1950s and then to US actor Rik van Nutter. Both marriages ended in divorce and she had no children.