I’ve always admired the on-screen presence of Sophia Loren. From the moment I watched the film, It Started in Naples, especially after her performance of the tongue-and-cheek musical number, “Tu vuò fà l’americano", I began to take note of that distinctive look that Italian film stars seemed to have. There was something different about the way they were. They moved differently. They spoke differently. And they interacted differently. Whatever it was - with the gesture of their hands, the deliberateness of their vernacular, they were always stylish. It was a kind of stylishness that Hollywood didn't do. Hollywood stars always appeared a little made up by their studio's PR machine. Italian film stars by comparison, with their paltry backing, had a rawness to them which makes them authentic. It is thus I recall Sophia Lauren during that golden age of Italian cinema - stylish to the core.

In recent days, Sophia Loren was back in the news, promoting her new memoir, Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow: My Life. In it, she finally came forward with the story behind her now infamous picture with the late Jayne Mansfield. The setting of the photograph was a party held for her by Paramount Studios. All the A-list were invited, including Jayne Mansfield. According to Sophia Loren, the dress that Jayne Mansfield was wearing was so low cut, that she was truly fearful that her bosom was going to spill right out onto the table - explaining that priceless expression on her face. Spoken like a true icon!