Thursday, December 26, 2013

Remembering Maurizio Arena

Maurizio Arena was born Maurizio Di Lorenzo on December 26, 1933 in Rome, Italy. He is the brother of actress Rosanna Di Lorenzo [1938- ]. Maurizio chose the name Arena as a pseudonym in honor of the actress Anna Arena, who he was romantically linked to for a few years, despite the strong difference of age. Arena was very famous especially in the 1950s, thanks to the success of the film trilogy directed by Dino Risi “Poveri ma belli”, “Belle ma povere” (both 1957) and “Poveri milionari” (1958), embodying the kind popular, young, handsome and apathetic Roman of his time.
He also tried to be a director, without much success. He produced and starred in the 1960 film “Il principe fusto”, whose cast also included his mother and father. The film foreshadowed in some way, the lack of affinity of its values ​​with those of a certain Roman aristocracy, as demonstrated by the contrasting the love story of Beatrice de Savoia (1943). “Il prinicipe fusto” was shot while Fellini was making “La dolce vita”, centered on the Via Veneto which also saw Arena among its "natural actors". Arena would go on to appear in over 80 films during his short career including two Euro-westerns “The Terror of Oklahoma” (1959) as Clay Norton and “The Grandsons of Zorro” (1975) as Fiar Miguel.
Like many of his fellow actors, he took the risk of becoming a singer and in the last years of his short life, he introduced himself as a healer. He died on November 21, 1979 at the age of 45 following a heart attack he had suffered in his villa in Casal Palocco.

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