Lelia Goldoni

Lelia Goldoni (born Lelia Vita Rizzuto; October 1, 1936) is an American actress who appeared in a number of motion pictures and television shows starting in the late 1940s, including uncredited cameo roles in Joseph L. Mankiewicz's House of Strangers (1949), John Huston's We Were Strangers (1949) and The Italian Job (1969). She appeared as Denise James in the 1965 horror film Hysteria.[1]

Lelia Goldoni
John Cassavetes' Shadows - Now at Embassy Theater Broadway.jpg
Poster for the film Shadows (1959)
Lelia Vita Rizzuto

(1936-10-01) October 1, 1936 (age 84)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Years active1949-2016
(div. 1960)

William Hale
(m. 1961)
ChildrenAaron J. Rudelson

She costarred on the episode "Fair Exchange" and "Two Birds with One Bullet" of the British television series Danger Man (1964) with Patrick MacGoohan.

She is best known for co-starring in John Cassavetes's groundbreaking film Shadows (1959),[2] which launched her acting career,[3] and for playing the best friend of Ellen Burstyn's character in Martin Scorsese's Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974).

In 2010, she appeared in the miniseries The Pacific as Dora Basilone.


Goldoni was born Lelia Vita Rizzuto in New York City. Her father was an Italian actor and she was a second cousin to baseball player Phil Rizzuto.[4] She attended Los Angeles City College and was part of the Lester Horton Dancers in the 1950s.[4]

Partial filmographyEdit

Feature films
Year Title Role Notes
1949 We Were Strangers Consuelo Valdés Uncredited
1949 House of Strangers Italian Girl Uncredited
1959 Shadows Lelia
1965 Hysteria Denise James
1967 Theatre of Death Dani Gireaux
1969 The Italian Job[5] Mrs. Beckerman Uncredited
1974 Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore[6] Bea
1975 The Day of the Locust[6] Mary Dove
1976 Baby Blue Marine Mrs. Townsley
1978 Bloodbrothers[7] Maria
1978 Invasion of the Body Snatchers[8] Katherine Hendley
1980 The Unseen Virginia Keller
1981 Choices Jean Carluccio
1981 Gangster Wars Mrs. Lasker
1985 Rainy Day Friends Barbara Marti
1994 Somebody to Love Venice Waitress
2000 A Constant Forge Herself
2008 Chain Link[9] Floraine
2010 The Pacific Dora Basilone
2012 The Devil Inside Susan Meadows


  1. ^ Cotter, Robert Michael “Bobb” (2013). "Goldoni, Lelia (1936-)". The Women of Hammer Horror: A Biographical Dictionary and Filmography. McFarland. p. 89. ISBN 9781476602011. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  2. ^ Carney, Ray (1994). The Films of John Cassavetes: Pragmatism, Modernism, and the Movies. Cambridge UP. p. 35. ISBN 9780521388153.
  3. ^ Lane, Lydia (July 20, 1962). "Hollywood Beauty - Lelia Goldoni Individuality". Daily Press. Retrieved July 29, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
  4. ^ a b "Dancing Co-Ed". The Cincinnati Enquirer. April 25, 1954. Retrieved July 29, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
  5. ^ Thomas, Kevin (September 5, 1969). "'The Italian Job' Plot Includes a Big Chase". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 29, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
  6. ^ a b "Lelia Goldoni In New Role". The Evening Sun. April 16, 1974. Retrieved July 29, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
  7. ^ "'Bloodbrothers' Film Just Doesn't Deliver". The Journal News. September 27, 1978. Retrieved July 29, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
  8. ^ Giddins, Gary (2006). Natural Selection: Gary Giddins on Comedy, Film, Music, and Books. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 135. ISBN 9780195179514. lelia goldoni.
  9. ^ Thomas, Gary Goldstein; Kevin (February 20, 2009). "Ex-con gets reacquainted with family in 'Chain Link'". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved July 29, 2018.

External linksEdit