Monday, April 14, 2014

Former girlfriend of King Michael enters convent

April 14, 1948

The former "longtime" girlfriend of King Michael of Romania, has entered the Convent de Liarri, near Cassino, reports the Chicago Tribune Service.

Mariella Lotti, a blonde Italian actress, made this decision following the former King's announcement of his engagement to Princess Anne of Bourbon-Parma.

Miss Lotti first met Michael in 1939 when she was in Bucharest "as a member of an Italian theatrical company."  She left the troupe, and decided to remain in Bucharest.  She and Michael were "seen together constantly."  

She returned to Italy after the start of the second world war, and she wrote to "the King daily."

[Mariella Lotti made her film debut in 1939, and continued to appear in films until 1954.  She died in 2006.  The story of her romance with Michael was baseless, according to  CBS reporter Don Hollenbeck.  At the time, he appeared on a program called CBS Views the Press.  The original story about Lotti appeared in the New York Journal-American, a daily newspaper (which ceased publication in 1966.)

Hollenbeck "dispatched" another CBS reporter, Peter Tompkins, to Rome to find out more about this story.  He reported that Signorina Lotti was currently at work on a movie, 'Guarany,' for Universalia, and would soon be heading to Brazil for location shots.   Lotti told the reporter that she was not entering a convent.  She also stated she never "had a love affair with King Michael."

Hollenbeck chastised the Journal-American: "While the facts may often spoil a good story, outright fiction really ought to be labeled as such."]

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