We inextricably connect her name with the renowned Trevi Fountain in Rome. We are talking about the actress Anita Eckberg. Her night bath made the fountain, the movie, and herself instantly famous back in 1960 when the legendary Italian director Frederico Fellini shot his classical movie La dolce vita, which has become a legend, in Rome. In the movie, Anita Eckberg lures her co-star Marcello Mastroianni under the waterfall of this fountain to baptize him.
This famous scene took place at the Trevi Fountain. After a chase through Rome at night, the two characters come through the narrow streets to the fountain. The transfigured look, the long, blonde, flowing hair and the droplets of water on her skin made men weak around the world. When you hear the name of Anita Eckberg, you first think of this immortal scene that is etched into the cinema history. The shot gained so much attention because the actress perfectly embodied the rebirth of Botticelli’s Venus and she appeared as an almost supernatural being in the whole film.
The Birth Of An Icon
Eckberg wears a white fur stole over a black robe and looks like the queen of the night. As unearthly as it appears in these scenes, the following location also left its mark on the collective memory. The Trevi Fountain turned the actress into a cinema icon that has remained in the top place forever and made her the Venus of Rome. The actress drew fame from this all her life. The male fantasy that came to life stood like no other in the dawn of the 1960s.
From Sweden to Hollywood and Italy
She was born in Sweden in 1931 as the sixth of eight kids of a middle class workers family. In 1951 Eckberg won the Miss Sweden title and the party girl became an actress quickly after. Initially, she earned her living by taking up supporting roles in Hollywood. But her part in William Wellman’s The Yellow Stream was soon followed by The Golden Globe. Many well-known movies such as War and Peace or 4 for Texas came shortly after. She and her male acquaintances like Frank Sinatra and Gary Cooper made headlines around the world.
She Passed Away at the Age of 83
But of all things, a movie in black and white justified their worldwide fame. La Dolce Vita by Frederico Fellini made Anita Eckberg a superstar. The enormous success even made her move to Italy. Sadly, her subsequent films are long forgotten today. The movie of Fellini and its most famous scene in the Trevi Fountain were too big and overshadowing.
In 2015 Anita Eckberg died in a hospital in Rocca di Papa near Rome and the age of 83. Film buffs will forever remember her as the living embodiment of Venus in the Trevi Fountain. Her fame has faded a little, but the fountain in Rome still delights millions of visitors annually. They fondly remember the legendary footage that the square still emanates to this day.