Welcome to Claudia Cardinale.info- Claudia Cardinale’s Biography
Claudia Cardinale was born Claude Josephine Rose Cardin, on 15th April 1938 in the city of Tunis in Tunisia. Claudia’s parents were of Sicilian extraction, however she did not learn Italian until later in life and French was always her first language. Cardinale had planned to fulfil a career as a teacher until she won a Tunisian beauty contest in 1957.The first prize of the beauty contest was a trip to Venice where she was noticed by the Italian film industry, and was given a seven year contract with Vides films.
Claudia Cardinale’s movie debut was in the film Goha in 1958 and later the same year in Big Deal on Madonna Street which was an international success. During her early years here career was managed by the producer Franco Cristaldi, who in 1966 would become her husband. Her voice in the early movies was dubbed due to her naturally deep voice and her inexperience with the Italian language.
In the 1960’s, Claudia Cardinale’s starred in some of the Italian industry’s finest movies, including Luchino Visconti’s II Gattopardo (The Leopard) in 1963, Fedrico Fellini’s 8½ (1963), Philippe de Broca’s Cartouche (1963) and Sergio Leone’s Once Upon a Time in the West (1968).
In 1963 Cardinale won a Nastro d’Argento (Silver Ribbon) for her role as Maria in La Ragazza di Bube (Bebo’s Girl). After this success she was cast in the Hollywood production of Blake Edwards The Pink Panther where she played Princess Dala. Cardinale made several other Hollywood movies including Circus World (1963), Blindfold (1965), The Professionals (1966) and The Hell with Heroes (1968), but always considered herself more of an European movie star. Claudia Cardinale’s role in The Professionals is probably considered the best of her Hollywood movies, starring alongside Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Jack Palance, Woody Strode and Robert Ryan.
Another of her outstanding performances is her in Luchino Visconti’s Sandra Of A Thousand Delights (1965) where she plays a Holocaust victim. Cardinale has worked prominently in European films since the 1960’s, most notably Fitzcarraldo (1982), Mayrig (1991) and And Now… Ladies and Gentlemen (2002).
Since 1999, Claudia Cardinale has been an UNESCO good will ambassador for the Defence of Women’s Rights and in 2005 Cardinale wrote her autobiography entitled Moi Claudia, Toi Claudia.