The 87-year-old is back on screens this afternoon as she takes on the role of Nora in the 1965 classic Operation Crossbow, which airs on BBC Two from 3.45pm. The World War II drama, which also stars George Peppard, transports viewers to December 1942 and the emergence of new details about a deadly new weapon developed by Germany. When the Nazi plot becomes clear, a small team of British agents are sent to destroy the weapons base in Holland and claim victory for the Allies.
The role helped maintain Loren’s incredible status among moviegoers, who still marvel at the Italian-born star’s incredible talents decades later.
Such is her legacy, Loren has been named one of the greatest female stars of classic Hollywood cinema by the American Film Institute (AFI).
The two-time Oscar winner is also the last surviving major star of Hollywood’s Golden Age and the only living person on AFI’s list of legends.
While Loren, who has also won six Golden Globes in her career, has had a long and successful life, she admitted to struggling as the world was ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic.
The star noted that while “sometimes when I say I’m 86, I don’t believe it,” instead of “feeling like 20,” the pandemic had hit her.
She told AARP THE MAGAZINE in December 2020, “I’m just trying to have this moment of happiness during this pandemic, because we’ll be waiting for a better future.”
At this time, Loren noted that she was now living in Geneva, Switzerland, and keeping in touch with her grandchildren, which ensured that her spirits were always high.
It filtered into her life lessons, admitting that negative thinking was never something she dwelled on.
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Loren and Carlo Ponti, the successful Italian director, were married twice – first in 1957 before the marriage was annulled in 1962, then again in 1966, after which they remained together until his death in the age of 94 in 2007.
She said: “I was very sad when my husband died because you can never get over that kind of feeling.
“Never. Every time you think about it, there’s a moment of loneliness, which is very strong, but that’s life.”
According to a report from MailOnline, Loren was promoting her new role in The Life Ahead, where she played a Holocaust survivor who bonds with a young Nigerian immigrant.
Released on Netflix in 2020, the project was directed by his son Edoardo.
Speaking about the role, Loren noted how much she “loved working and when you fall in love with a story” it was easy to say yes to a role, even though she was well over eighty at the time.
Loren continued, “It’s kind of magic and it happened to me and my son as soon as we were making this movie.
“What happens between the troubled young boy and the woman I play is beautiful.
“That’s the kind of miracles we need today.”
Operation Crossbow airs today at 3.45pm on BBC Two.