Sandra Milo, who starred in Fellini films, dies at 90


Ms Milo had three children by two partners and her private life was often fodder for tabloids and glossy magazines. With interruptions of varying length – including a lull that began in the late 1960s, when she was raising her children – she worked until her death, most recently on reality TV shows.

At 77, she took part in the Italian edition of “Celebrity Island,” in which low-key celebrities are immersed in a wild habitat to fend off nature; she was eliminated in the semi-finals. Last year, she participated in the Italian edition of “The Masked Singer” and took part in the second season of an Italian reality show retracing the adventures of three so-called golden girls (average age: 80).

Sandra Milo was born Salvatrice Elena Greco in Tunis on March 11, 1933. She moved with her family to Tuscany as a child and remembers experiencing fear and hunger during the war.

Her mother called her “Lily,” she said in the 2019 documentary, but she didn’t like it. “It was too light,” she said, and it didn’t reflect who she was. She chose the first name Sandra, she explains, because the first syllable, “san”, is soft “like a caress”, she says, while the second, “dra”, “is very hard, very dry and looks like me because I am too.

She chose the surname Milo after a photo shoot she had done in a town outside Rome was published with the caption “Le Milo de Tivoli”, a reference to the “Venus de Milo”, she declared in a meeting.

After a marriage at age 15 that lasted only 21 days, she moved to Milan to become a model, then to Rome to act. She found work and got her big break in 1959 when she starred in Rossellini’s “Il Generale Della Rovere,” a critical and box office success. Two years later, she worked with him again on the drama “Vanina Vanini,” but that film failed so badly and her performance was so viciously criticized that it nearly derailed her career.


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