Bella Darvi

po_Darvi-BellaBajla Węgier (October 23, 1928 – September 11, 1971), better known as Bella Darvi, was a Polish film actress and stage performer who was active in France and the United States.

Jailed by the Nazis during World War II, she was released in 1943. She married a businessman, Alban Cavalcade, on October 7, 1950 and traveled with him to Monaco. She was discovered in Paris by the wife of mogul Darryl F. Zanuck. In 1952, she divorced Cavalcade, and moved into the Zanuck home. She signed a contract in August 1953 with Zanuck, who changed her name to Bella Darvi, Darvi is a combination of the first names of Zanuck and his wife, Virginia. Eventually, she became Zanuck’s mistress, although she reportedly dated other men including Robert Stack and Brad Dexter.

She was Richard Widmark’s love interest in Sam Fuller’s film Hell and High Water (1954) as well as that of Kirk Douglas in The Racers (1955), but is probably best remembered for the role of Nefer, the seductive Babylonian courtesan, in The Egyptian (1954). She received the role because her lover, Zanuck, preferred her over Marilyn Monroe.