Orfei in Signore & signori (1966)
21 December 1931
|Died||15 November 2015
|Other names||Miranda Orfei
Moira degli elefanti ("Moira of the Elephants")
|Spouse(s)||Walter Nones; 1961 – 2015 (her death)|
Moira Orfei (Italian pronunciation: [ˈmɔira orˈfɛi]; born Miranda Orfei; 21 December 1931 – 15 November 2015) was an Italian actress and television personality. Moira was also considered the queen of the Italian circus, one stage name being Moira of the Elephants. Cult movie fans know her for the many sword-and-sandal (peplum) films she starred in.
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Raised in a family who owned the circus company Circus Orfei, Moira became the symbol of circus in Italy and attained international fame. The Circus Moira Orfei itself was founded in 1960. She was photographed in various scenes as a rider, trapeze artist, acrobat, dominatrice of elephants and trainer of doves.
Her excessively garish image mirrors her eccentric and exuberant personality. It was Dino De Laurentiis who suggested that she change her name from Miranda to Moira. From then on, her face became an effigy of unchanging characteristics: heavy make-up with eyes coated with eyeliner, bright lipstick, an accentuated mole above the lip, hair tied in a turban. Promotional billboards were carpeted with this picture in every city that the circus stopped. She also became a film actress, acting in over forty films, from comedies to sword and sandal films (among which were many Italian crime films).
Her parents were Riccardo Orfei and Violetta Arata. She married Walter Nones in 1961, and they had two children Stefano Orfei and Lara Orfei.
On 4 August 2006 Moira Orfei suffered an ischemic stroke during a show in Gioiosa Ionica. The artist was still under medical care when she died nine years later from natural causes on 15 November 2015 in Brescia, Italy.
- The Loves of Hercules 1960 (a.k.a. Hercules vs the Hydra)
- Under Ten Flags 1960
- Queen of the Pirates 1960
- Ti aspetterò all'inferno 1960
- Ursus 1961, a.k.a. Ursus, Son of Hercules, a.k.a. Mighty Ursus
- Mole Men Against the Son of Hercules 1961
- Revenge of the Conquered 1961
- Rocco e le sorelle 1961
- Kerim, Son of the Sheik 1962
- I tromboni di Fra' Diavolo 1962
- Ursus in the Valley of the Lions 1962, a.k.a. Valley of the Lions
- Toto vs. the Four 1963
- Toto and Cleopatra 1963
- Samson and the Slave Queen 1963, a.k.a. Zorro vs Maciste
- Divorzio alla siciliana 1963
- The Monk of Monza 1963
- The Two Gladiators 1963
- I due mafiosi 1964
- Revolt of the Praetorians 1964
- Samson and His Mighty Challenge 1964
- The Triumph of Hercules 1964
- Terror of the Steppes 1964
- The Beast of Babylon Against the Son of Hercules 1964
- Casanova 70 1965
- How We Got Into Trouble with the Army 1965
- Two Sergeants of General Custer 1965
- Fire Over Rome 1965
- Due mafiosi contro Al Capone 1966
- The Birds, the Bees and the Italians 1966
- Torture Me But Kill Me with Kisses 1968
- Paolo il freddo 1974
- Scent of a Woman 1974
- Dracula in the Provinces 1975, a.k.a. Young Dracula
- Arrivano i bersaglieri 1980
- Vacanze di Natale '90 1990
- Natale in India 2003
- "Addio a Moira Orfei, a Brescia il suo ultimo spettacolo" (in Italian). Giornale di Brescia. 2015-11-15. Retrieved 15 November 2015.
- "È morta Moira Orfei, regina del circo" (in Italian). La Stampa. 15 November 2015. Retrieved 15 November 2015.
- Una biografia online
- Moira Orfei, circus owner - obituary
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