Monica Vitti (born 3 November 1931) is an Italian actress noted for her frosty expressiveness and starring roles in films by Michelangelo Antonioni.
She was born Maria Luisa Ceciarelli in Rome.
Vitti's first film role was in Ettore Scola's "Ridere Ridere Ridere" (1954).
Her first important role was in Mario Amendola's "Le dritte" (1958).
In 1957 she joined Michelangelo Antonioni's Teatro Nuovo di Milano under his direction, later playing a leading role in his internationally celebrated,
award winning, and radically unconventional auteur movie, L'avventura (1960), as a detached and cool protagonist drifting into a relationship with the lover of her missing girlfriend.
She later received critical praise for starring roles in other Antonioni films including La notte (1961), L'eclisse (1962), and Il deserto rosso (1964), which are regarded, with L'avventura,
usually as a single series of 4 remarkable productions of similar style and topics. Since late 1960s, Monica Vitti decided to leave such cryptic style of Antonioni though, to do light comedies again and finding success so,
for example like under the direction of Alberto Sordi (Polvere di stelle, 1973) and Ettore Scola (Dramma della gelosia, 1970) and co-starring with Marcello Mastroianni (Dramma della gelosia).
Her only Hollywood effort was the title role in Modesty Blaise, a mod James Bond spoof with Terence Stamp (1966) which was of a moderate success with harsh critic reviews.
Modesty Blaise was a comedic spy-fi motion picture produced in the United Kingdom and released worldwide in 1966.
It was loosely based upon the popular comic strip Modesty Blaise by Peter O'Donnell, who wrote the original story and scenario upon which Evan Jones based his screenplay.
The film was released at the height of two cinematic trends: the popularity of James Bond had spawned a number of similarly themed films, and many of these films rather than being serious spy adventures were instead created as parodies of Bond and his genre.
Director Joseph Losey and the screenwriters chose to follow the latter approach, by making Modesty Blaise a campy, sometimes surrealistic comedy-adventure.