Pia Degermark

Pia Charlotte Degermark (born 24 August 1949) is a Swedish former actress. She is best known for her role as Elvira Madigan in the 1967 drama film Elvira Madigan, for which she won a Cannes Film Festival Award for Best Actress. A lifelong suffer from anorexia, Degermark failed to fulfil her spectacular teenage promise, and by middle age her personal life spiraled down into ill judged relationships, substance abuse and intervention by the authorities


Pia Degermark and Thommy Berggren

Born Pia Charlotte Degermark, she came to international notice as the lead in Elvira Madigan (1967), directed by Bo Widerberg, for which she won the Best Actress Award at the Cannes Film Festival in 1967. She was spotted by Widerberg in a newspaper photograph dancing with the Swedish Crown Prince Carl Gustav.[1] Degermark acted in only a few more films including The Looking Glass War (1970), an adaptation of the John le Carré novel of the same name, and The Vampire Happening (1971), a West German film produced by her husband.

Personal lifeEdit

Degermark described her father as an alcoholic but her early life as sheltered though being brought up in an affluent rural family. She suffered the symptoms of anorexia for years before she married Siemens heir and film producer Pier Andrea Caminneci (1941-2013) in 1971, having a son with him. They divorced in 1973. Degermark moved to the United States for a time. After returning to Sweden in 1979, still suffering from anorexia, Degermark became involved in a relationship with a man that led to her moving in the drug subculture, and eventually being befriended by a female career criminal. She worked in women's voluntary groups with sufferers of anorexia but by her 50s was embroiled in a series of disputes over missing money with both charity regulators and her father's second wife. After complaints were made by her stepmother to the authorities, Degermark served a prison sentence and lost the last friends remaining from her high water mark of teenage film star decades before.[1]


Year Title Role Notes
1967 Elvira Madigan Elvira Madigan
1969 A Brief Season (Una breve stagione) Luisa
1970 The Looking Glass War The Girl
1971 The Vampire Happening (Gebissen wird nur nachts) Betty Williams / Clarimonde

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Festival/Awards Category Nominated work Result
1967 20th Cannes Film Festival Best Actress
Elvira Madigan
1968 26th Golden Globe Awards Most Promising Newcomer – Female Nominated
1969 22nd British Academy Film Awards Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles Nominated


  1. ^ a b Pia Lundgren "Pia Degemark - You always get another chance", TARA, January 2004. Archived 18 April 2009 at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit