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Margaret Lee

German postcard by Kruger, no. 902/356. Photo: Georg Michalke.

 

Cool and beautiful Margaret Lee (1943) posed as a glamorous starlet for many international magazines throughout the 1960's. Between 1962 and 1983 the British born actress co-starred in over 70 European films. She was educated at the Italia Conti Theatre School in London and made her screen debut in Italy in Due Samurai per Cento Geishe (1962, Giorgio Simonelli). She followed it up with a stream of low-budget peplum spectacles, comedies and thrillers, some of them are now considered cult films. Highlights include Gli Imbroglioni (1963, Lucio Fulci) with Walter Chiari, the comedy In ginocchio da te (1964, Ettore Maria Fizzarotti), Questa volta parliamo di uomini (1965, Lina Wertmüller) with Nino Manfredi, Casanova '70 (1965, Mario Monicelli) with Marcello Mastroianni, and the French spy thriller Le Tigre se parfume à la dynamite (1965, Claude Chabrol).

 

Margaret Lee speaks fluently both English and Italian and from 1966 on she dubbed most of her own films. She was seen in sexy parts opposite Christopher Lee in the Edgar Wallace mystery Circus of Fear (1966, John Llewellyn Moxey), Jean Gabin in Le soleil des voyous (1967, Jean Delannoy), Gian Maria Volonté in Banditi a Milano (1968, Carlo Lizzani) and opposite Claudio Brook and Jean Servais in the French James Bond variation Coplan sauve sa peau (1968, Yves Boisset). Other interesting films were I Bastardi (1969, Duccio Tessari) - one of the last films of Rita Hayworth, the Christopher Lee horror production Il Trono di Fuoco (1970, Jesus Franco), the Oscar Wilde adaptation Dorian Gray (1970, Massimo Dallamano) starring Helmut Berger, and the ‘giallo’ (Italian thriller) Gli assassini sono nostri ospiti (1974, Vincenzo Rigo) starring Anthony Steffen. After 1975 she retired from the film industry to return in 1982 for two more films, the comedies Sesso e volentieri (1982, Dino Risi) and Stangata napoletana (1983, Vittorio Caprioli) starring Treat Williams. Margaret Lee was married to choreographer Gino Malerba and she is the mother of producer/production manager Roberto Malerba (V for Vendetta and Speed Racer) and production coordinator Damian Anderson (V for Vendetta and Ninja Asassin).

 

Sources: Sandra Brennan (All Movie Guide), Margaret Lee Fansite and IMDb.

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Taken on October 13, 2008