Famous Italian Actors/Actresses & Directors

by BalloonCinema | created - 11 Aug 2017 | updated - 11 Aug 2017 | Public

1. Giancarlo Giannini

Actor | Quantum of Solace

Giancarlo Giannini is an Oscar-nominated Italian actor, director and multilingual dubber who made an international reputation for his leading roles in Italian films as well as for his mastery of a variety of languages and dialects.

He was born August 1, 1942, in La Spezia, Italy. For ten years young ...

2. Marcello Mastroianni

Actor |

Marcello Mastroianni was born in Fontana Liri, Italy in 1924, but soon his family moved to Turin and then Rome. During WW2 he was sent to a German prison camp, but he managed to escape and hide in Venice. He debuted in films as an extra in Marionette (1939), then started working for the Italian ...

3. Roberto Benigni

Actor | La vita è bella

Roberto Benigni was born on October 27, 1952 in Manciano La Misericordia, Castiglion Fiorentino, Tuscany, Italy as Roberto Remigio Benigni. He is an actor and writer, known for Life Is Beautiful (1997), La tigre e la neve (2005) and Down by Law (1986). He has been married to Nicoletta Braschi since...

4. Adriano Celentano

Soundtrack | Yuppi du

Adriano Celentano is probably one of the most important singers of Italian pop music, but has also been a creator of a comic genre in the movies, with his characteristic walking and his facial expressions. For the most part, his films were commercially successful, in fact in the 70s and part of the...

5. Riccardo Scamarcio

Actor | John Wick: Chapter 2

Riccardo Scamarcio was born on November 13, 1979 in Andria, Puglia, Italy. He is an actor and producer, known for John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017), Mine vaganti (2010) and Tre metri sopra il cielo (2004).

6. Raoul Bova

Actor | AVP: Alien vs. Predator

Raoul Bova was born in a Roman white collar family, his father was an employee and his mother a housewife. He has two sisters who he is close to. His passion in his youth was swimming and he became a champion at 16. He performed his military duty in the "Bersaglieri" and he studied at the ISEF but ...

7. Toni Servillo

Actor | La grande bellezza

Actor and director Toni Servillo was born in Afragola in 1959. In 1977 Servillo founded the Teatro Studio in Caserta for whom he directed 'Propaganda' (1979), 'Norma' (1982), 'Billy il bugiardo' (1983) and 'Guernica' (1985), amongst others. In 1986 he collaborated with the Falso Movimento group, ...

8. Nanni Moretti

Producer | La stanza del figlio

Nanni Moretti was born on the 19th of August, 1953. He lives in Rome, where since he was a kid he devotes himself to his two passions: cinema and water-polo. In 1970 he also played in water-polo first division in Italy, and in the junior National team. In those years he was also very committed in ...

9. Franco Nero

Actor | Django Unchained

Blue-eyed and well-built Italian actor in international cinema, Franco Nero, was a painting photographer when he was discovered as an actor by director John Huston. He has since appeared in more than 200 movies around the world, working with Europe's top directors, such as Luis Buñuel, Rainer ...

10. Pierfrancesco Favino

Actor | World War Z

Pierfrancesco Favino was born on August 24, 1969 in Rome, Lazio, Italy. He is known for his work on World War Z (2013), Rush (2013) and Angels & Demons (2009).

11. Carlo Verdone

Actor | La grande bellezza

Carlo Verdone is considered by many the heir of Alberto Sordi, expecially when they acted together in Troppo forte and In viaggio con papa', in these films many similarities with Sordi were apparent, the popular language, the romanesco, and the embodiment of Italian middle man in the '80s that ...

12. Lorenzo Richelmy

Actor | Marco Polo

Lorenzo Richelmy is an actor, known for Marco Polo (2014), Una questione privata (2017) and La ragazza nella nebbia (2017).

13. Matilde Gioli

Actress | Il capitale umano

Matilde Gioli was born on September 2, 1989 in Milan, Lombardy, Italy as Matilde Lojacono. She is an actress, known for Il capitale umano (2013), Solo per il weekend (2015) and Gomorra: La serie (2014).

14. Monica Bellucci

Actress | Malèna

Monica Anna Maria Bellucci was born on September 30, 1964 in the Italian village of Città di Castello, Umbria, the only child of Brunella Briganti and Pasquale Bellucci. She originally pursued a career in the legal profession. While attending the University of Perugia, she modeled on the side to ...

15. Sophia Loren

Actress | La ciociara

Sophia Loren was born as Sofia Scicolone at the Clinica Regina Margherita in Rome, Italy, on September 20, 1934. Her father, Riccardo Scicolone, was married to another woman and refused to marry her mother, Romilda Villani, despite the fact that she was the mother of his two children (Sophia and ...

16. Claudia Cardinale

Actress | C'era una volta il West

Like many other female Italian film stars, Claudia Cardinale's entry into the business was by way of a beauty pageant. She was 17 years old and studying at the Centro Sperimentale in Rome when she entered a beauty contest, which resulted in her getting a succession of small film roles. Her earthy ...

17. Valeria Golino

Actress | Rain Man

The second child of an Italian germanist and a Greek painter, Valeria Golino grew up in Naples until her parents parted. After three years in Athens with her mother and another three in Naples with her father, she began to work as a model. She left high school after her first movie and didn't study...

18. Monica Vitti

Actress | Il deserto rosso

Monica Vitti was born on November 3, 1931 in Rome, Lazio, Italy as Maria Luisa Ceciarelli. She is an actress, known for Red Desert (1964), L'Avventura (1960) and L'Eclisse (1962). She has been married to Roberto Russo since 1995.

19. Giovanna Mezzogiorno

Actress | Vincere

Giovanna Mezzogiorno was born on November 9, 1974 in Rome, Lazio, Italy. She is an actress and producer, known for Vincere (2009), Facing Windows (2003) and Love in the Time of Cholera (2007). She has been married to Alessio Federico Fugolo since October 24, 2009. They have two children.

20. Ornella Muti

Actress | Flash Gordon

Ornella Muti was born on March 9, 1955 in Rome, Lazio, Italy as Francesca Romana Rivelli. She is an actress, known for Flash Gordon (1980), La moglie più bella (1970) and Oscar (1991). She was previously married to Federico Fachinetti and Alessio Orano.

21. Maria Grazia Cucinotta

Actress | The World Is Not Enough

Maria Grazia Cucinotta (born 27 July 1968) is an Italian actress who has featured in many films and television series since 1990. She has also worked as a producer, screenwriter and model. Cucinotta was born in Messina, Province of Messina, Sicily, Italy. She is well known in Italy as a movie and ...

22. Caterina Murino

Actress | Casino Royale

Caterina Murino was born on September 15, 1977, in Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy. In 1996 she took fourth place in the Miss Italy contest. Then she moved to Milan, where she began working as a model in commercials for MasterCard, Swatch, Mercedes-Benz and Nescafe, among other gigs. From 1999-2000 she ...

23. Laura Chiatti

Actress | Il caso dell'infedele Klara

Laura Chiatti was born on July 15, 1982 in Castiglione del Lago, Perugia, Umbria, Italy. She is an actress, known for Il caso dell'infedele Klara (2009), A casa nostra (2006) and Ho voglia di te (2007). She has been married to Marco Bocci since July 5, 2014. They have two children.

24. Alessandra Mastronardi

Actress | To Rome with Love

Alessandra Mastronardi was born on February 18, 1986 in Naples, Campania, Italy. She is an actress, known for To Rome with Love (2012), Master of None (2015) and Titanic: Blood and Steel (2012).

25. Asia Argento

Actress | Land of the Dead

Asia Argento was born in Rome, Italy, into a family of actors and filmmakers, both occupations which she has herself pursued. She made her debut when she was only nine years old in Sergio Citti's Sogni e bisogni (1985). In 1988 she had the leading role in Cristina Comencini's first film, Zoo (1988)...

26. Daniela Bianchi

Actress | From Russia with Love

Daniela Bianchi is an Italian actress, best known for her role of Bond girl Tatiana Romanova in From Russia with Love (1963). She Finished 1st Runner Up in Miss Universe 1960 Competition, enough to get the attentions of Bond movie producers who chose her over 200 female prospects for the role of ...

27. Violante Placido

Actress | Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance

Italian actress/singer/songwriter Violante Placido was born in Rome. She made her on-screen debut in Quattro bravi ragazzi (1993) alongside her father Michele Placido. In 1996 she starred in Jack Frusciante è uscito dal gruppo (1996) which became quite successful in Italy. Her first major ...

28. Carolina Crescentini

Actress | 20 sigarette

Blonde beauty Carolina Crescentini was born in Rome on April 18, 1980; daughter of two commerce graduates, she grew up in the Roman quarter of Monteverde. She originally wanted to be a film critic but at 19 her interest in acting increased and she decided to attend several acting schools, including...

29. Vanessa Hessler

Actress | Le mille e una notte: Aladino e Sherazade

Vanessa Hessler was born on January 21, 1988 in Rome, Lazio, Italy. She is an actress, known for Le mille e una notte: Aladino e Sherazade (2012), Astérix aux jeux olympiques (2008) and La figlia del capitano (2012).

30. Margareth Madè

Actress | Baarìa

Margareth Madè was born on June 22, 1982 in Paternò, Sicily, Italy as Margareth Tamara Maccarrone. She is an actress, known for Baarìa (2009), Andron (2015) and La mia casa è piena di specchi (2010). She has been married to Giuseppe Zeno since August 20, 2016. They have one child.

31. Claudia Gerini

Actress | The Passion of the Christ

Claudia Gerini was born in Rome, where she did classical studies and dance training. Her acting career began when an advertising agency cast her in several commercials. Claudia Gerini has had a long movie career in Italy and abroad, working with actors and directors like Sergio Castellito, Giuseppe...

32. Francesca Neri

Actress | Collateral Damage

Francesca Neri was born on February 10, 1964 in Trento, Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy. She is an actress and producer, known for Collateral Damage (2002), Hannibal (2001) and Live Flesh (1997). She has been married to Claudio Amendola since December 11, 2010. They have one child.

33. Giuseppe Tornatore

Writer | La leggenda del pianista sull'oceano

Giuseppe Tornatore was born on May 27, 1956 in Bagheria, Sicily, Italy. He is a writer and director, known for La leggenda del pianista sull'oceano (1998), The Best Offer (2013) and Cinema Paradiso (1988).

34. Matteo Garrone

Director | Gomorra

Matteo Garrone was born in Rome in 1968. He is the son of a theatre critic, Nico Garrone, and a photographer. In 1996 he won the Sacher d'Oro, an award sponsored by Nanni Moretti, with the short film Silhouette (1996), that became one of the three episodes of his first feature film Terra di mezzo (...

35. Paolo Sorrentino

Writer | Youth

Paolo Sorrentino was born on May 31, 1970 in Naples, Campania, Italy. He is a writer and director, known for Youth (2015), The Great Beauty (2013) and This Must Be the Place (2011). He is married to Daniela D'Antonio. They have two children.

36. Gabriele Salvatores

Director | Nirvana

Gabriele Salvatores was born on July 30, 1950 in Naples, Campania, Italy. He is a director and writer, known for Nirvana (1997), I'm Not Scared (2003) and Denti (2000).

37. Luca Guadagnino

Director | Call Me by Your Name

Luca Guadagnino was born in 1971 in Palermo, Sicily, Italy. He is a director and producer, known for Call Me by Your Name (2017), Io sono l'amore (2009) and A Bigger Splash (2015).

38. Gabriele Muccino

Director | Seven Pounds

Gabriele Muccino was born on May 20, 1967 in Rome, Lazio, Italy. He is a director and writer, known for Seven Pounds (2008), The Pursuit of Happyness (2006) and L'ultimo bacio (2001). He has been married to Angelica Russo since December 22, 2012. He was previously married to Elena Majoni.

39. Emanuele Crialese

Director | Respiro

Although born in Rome in 1965, Emanuele Crialese has Sicilian roots, to which he pays tribute in film after film. In 1991 he leaves for the USA where he studies film direction at New York University. After making several shorts, he directs his first feature-length movie Once We Were Strangers (1997)...

40. Bernardo Bertolucci

Writer | The Last Emperor

Bernardo Bertolucci, the Italian director whose films are known for their colorful visual style, was born in Parma, Italy, in 1940. He attended Rome University and became famous as a poet. He served as assistant director for Pier Paolo Pasolini in the film Accattone (1961) and directed La Commare ...

41. Dario Argento

Writer | Profondo rosso

Dario Argento was born on September 7, 1940, in Rome, Italy, the first-born son of famed Italian producer Salvatore Argento and Brazilian fashion model Elda Luxardo. Argento recalls getting his ideas for filmmaking from his close-knit family from Italian folk tales told by his parents and other ...

42. Franco Zeffirelli

Director | Romeo and Juliet

Franco Zeffirelli was born on February 12, 1923 in Florence, Tuscany, Italy as Gian Franco Corsi Zeffirelli. He is known for his work on Romeo and Juliet (1968), La traviata (1982) and The Taming of the Shrew (1967).

43. Sergio Leone

Writer | Once Upon a Time in America

Sergio Leone was virtually born into the cinema - he was the son of Roberto Roberti (A.K.A. Vincenzo Leone), one of Italy's cinema pioneers, and actress Bice Valerian. Leone entered films in his late teens, working as an assistant director to both Italian directors and U.S. directors working in ...

44. Federico Fellini

Writer | Amarcord

The women who both attracted and frightened him and an Italy dominated in his youth by Mussolini and Pope Pius XII - inspired the dreams that Fellini started recording in notebooks in the 1960s. Life and dreams were raw material for his films. His native Rimini and characters like Saraghina (the ...

45. Vittorio De Sica

Director | Ladri di biciclette

Vittorio De Sica grew up in Naples, and started out as an office clerk in order to raise money to support his poor family. He was increasingly drawn towards acting, and made his screen debut while still in his teens, joining a stage company in 1923. By the late 1920s he was a successful matinee ...

46. Pier Paolo Pasolini

Writer | Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma

Pier Paolo Pasolini achieved fame and notoriety long before he entered the film industry. A published poet at 19, he had already written numerous novels and essays before his first screenplay in 1954. His first film Accattone (1961) was based on his own novel and its violent depiction of the life ...

47. Luchino Visconti

Director | Le notti bianche

Luchino Visconti was born on November 2, 1906 in Milan, Lombardy, Italy as Luchino Visconti di Modrone. He was a director and writer, known for Le Notti Bianche (1957), Rocco and His Brothers (1960) and Death in Venice (1971). He died on March 17, 1976 in Rome, Lazio, Italy.

48. Michelangelo Antonioni

Writer | Blowup

Michelangelo Antonioni was born in 1912 into a middle-class family and grew up in bourgeois surroundings of the Italian province. In Bologna he studied economics and commerce while he painted and also wrote criticism for a local newspaper. In 1939 he went to Rome and worked for the journal "Cinema"...

49. Frank Capra

Director | It's a Wonderful Life

One of seven children, Frank Capra was born on May 18, 1897, in Bisacquino, Sicily. On May 10, 1903, his family left for America aboard the ship Germania, arriving in New York on May 23rd. "There's no ventilation, and it stinks like hell. They're all miserable. It's the most degrading place you ...



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