Edwige Fenech

Edwige Fenech (French: [ɛdviʒ fənɛʃ], Italian: [edˈviʒ feˈnɛk, - ˈfɛːnek];[1] born 24 December 1948) is an Algerian-born Maltese-Sicilian actress and film producer.[2] She is mostly known as the star of a series of commedia sexy all'italiana and giallo films released in the 1970s, which turned her into a sex symbol.

Edwige Fenech
Edwige Fenech in Tuttiicoloridelbuio-1972.png
Born (1948-12-24) 24 December 1948 (age 73)
Bône, French Algeria (now Annaba, Algeria)
OccupationActress, producer
Years active1968–present
(m. 1971; div. 1979)


Fenech was born in Bône, Constantine, French Algeria (now Annaba, Annaba Province, Algeria) to a Maltese father and Sicilian mother.

Cinema careerEdit

Fenech moved from Nice (France) to Rome in 1967 for her first Italian film Samoa, Queen of the Jungle by Guido Malatesta.[3][4] In 1968, she came under contract with Austrian director Franz Antel and from the late 1960s to early 1970s, she acted in various films of Antel (including his acclaimed Frau Wirtin series) as well as that of Franz Marischka.[citation needed]

Fenech starred in many genres of cinema[5] but her greatest commercial success came with commedia sexy all'italiana films, particularly including earlier works Ubalda, All Naked and Warm (1972) and Giovannona Long-Thigh (1973), as well as the following l'insegnante (school teacher), la soldatessa (soldier), la poliziotta (policewoman) series and other films that featured Fenech in stereotypical professions, which further bolstered Fenech's position as the most popular actress of the genre. She often paired with Carlo Giuffrè and later with Renzo Montagnani in commedia sexy films.[citation needed]

Fenech was also a regular in giallo films.[6] Her works in this genre include The Seducers (1969), Five Dolls for an August Moon (1970), The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh (1971), Your Vice Is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key (1972), All the Colors of the Dark (1972), The Case of the Bloody Iris (1972), Strip Nude for Your Killer (1975), and Phantom of Death (1987).

Later careerEdit

In the 1980s, she became a television personality, typically appearing with Barbara Bouchet on a chat show on Italian television. After many years of work in movie production, she co-produced The Merchant of Venice (2004) with Al Pacino, and later accepted Eli Roth's offer to star in another movie, Hostel: Part II (2007). Quentin Tarantino named the character of Lt. Ed Fenech in Inglourious Basterds (2009) in her honour, and invited Fenech to the Italian premiere of his film.[7]

Personal lifeEdit

Fenech was married to Italian film producer Luciano Martino from 1971 to 1979.

In the mid-1990s, she was engaged to the well-known Italian industrialist Luca di Montezemolo. Her son Edwin (born 1971) has worked at her production company and was the former CEO of Ferrari Asia-Pacific, Ferrari Greater China and Ferrari North America.[8][9]

In popular cultureEdit

The English Metal band Cathedral wrote the song "Edwige's Eyes" on their album "The Guessing Game" as a tribute to the actress.


Year Title Role Director Notes
1967 All Mad About Him Gina Norbert Carbonnaux
1968 Samoa, Queen of the Jungle Samoa Guido Malatesta
The Son of Black Eagle Nastacia Guido Malatesta
Sexy Susan Sins Again Céline Franz Antel
1969 The Seducers Ulla Ottavio Alessi
House of Pleasure Rosalie Bobinet Franz Antel
The Brazen Women of Balzac [de] Felicitas Giuseppe Zaccariello
Madame and Her Niece Yvette Eberhard Schröder
Heads or Tails Manuela Piero Pierotti
Let It All Hang Out [de] Hong-Kong Franz Marischka
The Sweet Pussycats [de] Blande Giuseppe Zaccariello
Madame Bovary Emma Bovary Hans Schott-Schöbinger
1970 Satiricosissimo Poppaea Sabina Mariano Laurenti
Five Dolls for an August Moon Marie Chaney Mario Bava
Don Franco e Don Ciccio nell'anno della contestazione Anna Bellinzoni Marino Girolami
Le Mans, Shortcut to Hell Cora Osvaldo Civirani
1971 The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh Julie Wardh Sergio Martino
Le calde notti di Don Giovanni Aiscia Alfonso Brescia
Desert of Fire Juana Renzo Merusi
1972 All the Colors of the Dark Jane Harrison Sergio Martino
The Case of the Bloody Iris Jennifer Osterman Giuliano Carnimeo
Your Vice Is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key Floriana Sergio Martino
When Women Were Called Virgins Giulia Varrone Aldo Grimaldi
Naughty Nun Antonia Mariano Laurenti
Ubalda, All Naked and Warm Ubalda Mariano Laurenti
1973 Holy God, Here Comes the Passatore! Mora Giuliano Carnimeo
Giovannona Long-Thigh Giovannona Coscialunga Sergio Martino
La vedova inconsolabile ringrazia quanti la consolarono Catarina Prevosti Mariano Laurenti
Mean Frank and Crazy Tony Orchidea Michele Lupo
Anna, quel particolare piacere Anna Lovisi Giuliano Carnimeo
1974 Innocence and Desire Carmela Paternò Massimo Dallamano
Poker in Bed Eva Giuliano Carnimeo
1975 Lover Boy Marianna Persiquetti Marino Girolami
The School Teacher Giovanna Pagaus Nando Cicero
Strip Nude for Your Killer Magda Andrea Bianchi
Il vizio di famiglia Suzie Mariano Laurenti
La moglie vergine Valentina Marino Girolami
1976 Sex with a Smile Emilia Chiapponi Sergio Martino (segment "La cavallona")
Confessions of a Lady Cop Gianna Amicucci Michele Massimo Tarantini
Evil Thoughts Francesca Marani Ugo Tognazzi
My Sister in Law Viola Orlando / Rosa Orlando Lucio Fulci
La dottoressa del distretto militare Dr. Elena Dogliotti Nando Cicero
1977 The Virgo, the Taurus and the Capricorn Gioia Ferretti Luciano Martino
Taxi Girl Marcella Michele Massimo Tarantini
La soldatessa alla visita militare Eva Marini Nando Cicero
1978 The Greatest Battle Danielle Umberto Lenzi
The Schoolteacher Goes to Boys' High Monica Sebastiani Mariano Laurenti
The School Teacher in the House Luisa De Dominicis Michele Massimo Tarantini
La soldatessa alle grandi manovre Dottoressa Eva Marini Nando Cicero
Amori miei Deborah Steno
1979 A Policewoman on the Porno Squad Gianna D'Amico Michele Massimo Tarantini
Dr. Jekyll Likes Them Hot Barbara Wimply Steno
Saturday, Sunday and Friday Eng. Tokimoto Sergio Martino (segment "Sabato")
Hot Potato Maria Steno
1980 Il ladrone Deborah Pasquale Festa Campanile
I'm Photogenic Cinzia Pancaldi Dino Risi
La moglie in vacanza... l'amante in città Giulia Sergio Martino
Sugar, Honey and Pepper Amalia Passalacqua Sergio Martino
Catherine and I Elisabetta Alberto Sordi
Il ficcanaso Susanna Luisetti Bruno Corbucci
1981 Asso Silvia Castellano & Pipolo
Tais-toi quand tu parles! Béatrix Philippe Clair
Cornetti alla crema Marianna Tribalzi Sergio Martino
A Policewoman in New York Gianna Amicucci / La Pupa Michele Massimo Tarantini
1982 Don't Play with Tigers Francesca Del Prà Sergio Martino
Il paramedico Nina Miglio Sergio Nasca
An Ideal Adventure Patrizia Reda Stefano Vanzina
1984 Vacanze in America Miss De Romanis Carlo Vanzina
1988 Phantom of Death Hélène Martell Ruggero Deodato
1993 Private Crimes Nicole Venturi Sergio Martino 4 episodes
2000 Il fratello minore Stefano Gigli
2007 Hostel: Part II Art Class Professor Eli Roth


  1. ^ "Edvige" and "Fenech". DiPI Online. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
  2. ^ "Edwige Fenech". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  3. ^ INTERVISTA A EDWIGE FENECH Archived 2014-10-26 at the Wayback Machine, nocturno.it; accessed 3 June 2017.
  4. ^ [1], by Luigi Cozzi
  5. ^ "Edwige Fenech". cultsirens.com. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  6. ^ "Edwige Fenech, the giallo queen". rarecultcinema.com. Archived from the original on 25 March 2012. Retrieved 23 October 2011.
  7. ^ "Tarantino a Roma (meno male che c'è Edwige)". Donna Moderna. 2009-09-22. Retrieved 2019-07-11.
  8. ^ "Il figlio della Fenech numero 1 di Ferrari negli Usa". liberoquotidiano.it (in Italian). Libero Quotidiano. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  9. ^ "Ferrari names Edwin Fenech head of N.A. unit". autonews.com. Automotive News. Retrieved 5 October 2018.

Further readingEdit

  • Stefano Loparco, Il corpo dei Settanta. Il corpo, l'immagine e la maschera di Edwige Fenech, Il Foglio Letterario, 2009. ISBN 978-8876062582.

External linksEdit