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1957       Anita Ekberg

A drame of murder, lust, and violence, Valerie, a United Artists release starring Sterling Hayden, Anita Ekberg and Anthony Steel opened in 1957. Featured in the screenplay which was written by Leonard Heidman and Emmett Murphy, are Peter Walker, Jerry Barclay, Iphigenie Castiglioni, Gage Clarke and Tom McKee. The picture was produced by Hal R. Makelirn and directed by Gerd Oswald. The story tells of two different points of view of a marriage-a bad marriage. The variant stories are brought out at a murder trial. Garth, a hero lately returned from the war, kills his in-laws and attempts to kill his wife, Valerie, whom he claims was unfaithful. Valerie, lying wounded in the hospital, testifies that her marriage had been one vast nightmare by the violent and horrifying abuses of her husband, which culminated in his committing murder and attempted murder. For the title role, Producer Makelim wisely chose the Anita Ekberg, whose sensational physical qualities makes the conflict of the drama all the more credible. Sterling Hayden is the warped malevolent husband, driven

to violence by insane jealousy, and Anthony Steel (Anita's husband off the screen) is cast as a Reverend who befriends the distraught Valerie, and brings upon himself the wrath of the enraged husband, and the brooding suspicions of the townspeople. - Director Gerd Oswald, although a young man, has shown himself an old, and fine hand a~ action dramas. with crime backgrounds having directed among others, "A Kiss Before Dying" and "Crime of Passion."

Anita Ekberg was born Kerstin Anita Marianne Ekberg, a fancifully colorful name for a girl who has blossomed out as oue of the world's most electrifying stars. Now that she has heen accepted as a foremost exponent of feminine attractions, Anita is anxious to prove to the world her acting abilities, and her newest assignment as costar with Sterling Hayden and Anthony Steel in the Hal R. Makelin Productions, Valerie gives her full scope to prove her points. The United Artists release opened in 1957. Her husband is the same Steel, a prominent English star whom she married in Rome in May, 1956. Born in Malmo, Sweden, September 29, 1931, the daughter of Gusaf and Alvab Ekberg, she *as one of eight children. She has six brothers and sister named Inga. Her father, a business man, objected strenuously when she left school at the age of 16 to become a model. As a child, she had liked to draw and fashion clothes, and later thought she might become an airline hostess. Two year slater, she was named the National Beauty Queen of Sweden and in 1951, Miss Ekberg was the first foreign beauty te be an honor guest of the Miss America pageant in Atlantic City. She still declined screen and stage tests, preferring to return to Stockholm to continue her career as a model. Returning to the United States in 1952, with her command of English greatly improved as a result of a year's study, Miss Ekberg resumed her modeling career in New York. A short time later she was offered a contract with Batjac Productions (John Wayne and Robert Fellows) without even so much as a screen test, her personality and striking beauty being self-evident. In Valerie Anita portrays a beautiful Austrian girl who comes to America with her parents five years after the end of the Civil War and settles in a small Western town, where she becomes the central figure in her husband's murder trial. She is five feet, seven inches in height and weighs 120 pounds, with blue eyes and honey-blonde hair, as eloquent of her nationality as the slight accent which she gradually is dissolving.

Anthony Steel co-stars with his wife, Anita Ekberg, for the first time, in Valerie but he doesn't engage in any romantic scenes with her. In the Hal R. Makelim Production, a United Artists release. Steel plays a minister who is accused by Stealing Hayden (Anita's husband in the film) of being too attentive to her. But at no time are they together before the cameras. Gerd Oswald directed Valerie Click here for more

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