Barbara Bouchet, (born as Barbara Goutscher on August 15, 1943), is an actress and entrepreneuse who is fluent in English, German and Italian. She is a cosmopolitan star. By birth, she is Czech, by ethnicity, she is German, by upbringing, she is American, and by residence, she is Italian.

She was born in Reichenberg (now Liberec), Sudetenland, Czechoslovakia. Her place of birth is now in the Czech Republic, but she had to leave that country as a small child along with her family and the rest of her community.

After the end of the Second World War, the victorious Allied Powers, meeting at the Potsdam Conference in 1945, formalised their policy agreement on the systematic transfer of the Germans from Eastern Europe [1], which included the Sudeten Germans.

Little Barbara Goutscher, who had been nearly 2 years old at the time of the end of the war, accompanied her family, as they were transferred from the country. They were placed, along with many others, in a resettlement camp in the American occupation zone in Germany, from where they were, in time, able to apply for, and be granted, permission to emigrate.

Like many other refugees, at that time, in post-war Europe, the family discovered, to their relief, that they were eligible to migrate to the United States, as a result of the humanitarian provisions of the Displaced Persons Act [2] which had been legislated by the U.S. Congress in 1948. [3]

After arriving in America, her family were, eventually, able to settle in San Francisco, California, where the young Barbara Goutscher was raised and where she, later, attended the Galileo High School which is situated at the crossroads between the Russian Hill and Marina District areas of the city, drawing students mainly from those two neighbourhoods.

In 1959, spurred by the popularity of the film Gidget, KPIX-TV, the local television station covering the San Francisco Bay area, decided to hold a "Miss Gidget" beauty and talent contest on the Dick Stewart Television Show. The contest was open to all teenage girls in the local area, she entered and won, resulting in her first experience of fame. She, subsequently, went out on a date with the male star of the movie : James Darren.

The station offered her, as a prize, the chance, which she accepted, to become one of the "Regulars" in a dance group on the show, called The KPIX Dance Party [4]. They were teenage dancers who danced live to the top pop and rock and roll hits of the day and were TV stars, by virtue of the attention they received by being on television six days per week.

She was on the show from 1959 through 1962, after which she moved to the Hollywood area and made it into the film industry, changing her Germanic sounding surname to the French sounding Bouchet which had a more fashionable, social cachet.

Barbara Bouchet began her career modeling for magazine covers and appearing in television commercials, before eventually becoming an actress. Her first acting role was a minor part in What a Way to Go!, a romance, 1964, which led to a series of other roles in the 1960s, all of which emphasised her beauty, looks and figure making her a sex symbol.

Examples are such films as : John Goldfarb, Please Come Home, a comedy, 1964, in which she is dressed in alluring harem silk robes, In Harm's Way, a war drama, 1964, in which she is seen nude on the beaches of Pearl Harbor, and Agent For H.A.R.M., a spy action film, 1966, in which she wears a bikini for most of the time that she is on screen.

Moreover, in the 1967 James Bond satire, Casino Royale, she added a sultry element to the otherwise restrained Miss Moneypenny. Her early films gave her the grounding in character development that she needed in order to tackle more substantial roles later on in her career. She starred with William Shatner, in Star Trek, By Any Other Name, 1968, which has a memorable scene where he kisses her repeatedly.

In 1970, she moved to Italy where she began acting in Italian films after growing tired of being typecast and where she began to star in the leading roles that were being denied to her in Hollywood. She rapidly became one of the top actresses in the country as she was constantly in demand due to her strong professional work ethics, her natural acting abilities, and her grace, style and beauty. [5]

Her films, produced in Italy, can be categorised into three main genres : giallo, poliziottesco and commedia erotica all'italiana, (sex comedy). Gialli combine crime, horror and eroticism. Poliziotteschi are police, crime and action thrillers while Commedia erotica all'italiana brings together bawdy humour and farce which was especially liberating in Italian society, as it was part of the sexual revolution that was sweeping Italy at that time.

In 1971, she starred with two other Bond girls, Claudine Auger and Barbara Bach in La Tarantola dal ventre nero, (Black Belly Of the Tarantula) a giallo mystery film. Some notable films that she was in, at this era, were two giallo films that she starred with Rosalba Neri : Alla ricerca del piacere, (Amuck), 1971, in which they have a lesbian love making scene together and Casa d'Appuntamento, (French Sex Murders), 1972, a murder thriller. She starred in Milano Calibro 9, 1972, with Gastone Moschin, a violent, poliziottesco, gangster film.

Other films that she starred in, and which were greeted with critical acclaim, were films such as Non si sevizia un paperino, 1972, a giallo film noted for its dark subject matter relating to child killings and directed by the Italian horror master, Lucio Fulci and L'Anatra all'arancia, (Duck In Orange Sauce), 1975, a farcical, commedia erotica all'italiana, in which, she starred with Monica Vitti.

She starred with Yul Brynner in Con la rabbia agli occhi, known in English, as Death Rage, 1976, a giallo mafia film and also that year with Marty Feldman in 40 gradi all'ombra del lenzuolo, (Sex With A Smile), a commedia erotica all'italiana set as five farcical pieces in one film.

In the 1980s she became a television personality on Italian television, typically appearing on a chat show with fellow Italian actress, Edwige Fenech. She starred with Gregory Peck in The Scarlet And The Black, 1983, a successful WWII war rescue TV movie.

In 1985, she established a production company and started to produce a successful series of keep fit books and videos. In addition, she opened a fitness studio in Rome, Italy.

In 2002, she returned to American Cinema, starring with Leonardo DiCaprio in Gangs Of New York, a film about the violence between the criminal underworld and immigrant gangs in New York, in which she appears as Mrs Schermerhorn.

In 1976, Barbara Bouchet married Luigi Borghese, a producer, and has a child with him. He subsequently produced some of her later films. She lives with her husband and family in Rome, where she is a set member of the city's celebrity social life [6]. She continues to work actively in films and television as well as her various business concerns

Condensed from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Other sources:
[1] Prauser, Stefan & Arfon Rees, "The Expulsion of 'German' Communities from Eastern Europe at the end of the Second World War", European University Institute, Florense, 2004
[2] Displaced Persons Act, 1948. Retrieved on 06/20/2007.
[3] A Terrible Revenge, De Zayas, Alfred Maurice, Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN 1-403-97308-3, 2nd edition, 2006
[4] Interiano, Manny. KPIX Dance Party. Retrieved on 07/16/2007.
[5] Regoli, Alessandro. Barbara Bouchet Biografia (Italian). Retrieved on 01/12/2007.
[6] Barbara Bouchet, in May 2007, at the opening of a new celebrity restaurant in Rome, Italy. (Italian). Retrieved on 07/19/2007.

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