Anthony Steffen

Anthony Steffen, born Antonio Luiz de Teffé von Hoonholtz (July 21, 1930 – June 4, 2004), was an Italian and Brazilian film actor, screenwriter[1] and film producer.[1] Steffen achieved fame as a leading man in Spaghetti Western features. He was also known as Antonio Luigi de Teffe.[2]

Anthony Steffen
Steffen in Gunman Sent by God (1968)
Antonio Luiz de Teffé von Hoonholtz

(1930-07-21)July 21, 1930[1]
DiedJune 4, 2004(2004-06-04) (aged 73)
OccupationActor, screenwriter, film producer
Years active1953-1991


Born Antonio Luiz de Teffé von Hoonholtz at the Brazilian embassy in Rome, in the Pamphilj Palace, his family had noble blood of a long lineage of Count (von Hoonholtz) originally from Prussia; his great grandfather was the Great Baron of Tefé. Steffen was the first born among Manoel de Teffe' von Hoonholtz's children (followed by Federico de Teffe' and Melissa de Teffe'), who was a Formula One racing champion and later a Brazilian Ambassador. Steffen's grandaunt was Nair de Tefé von Hoonholtz, the first female caricaturist of Brazil and wife of Brazilian President Hermes Fonseca.

While still a teenager Steffen, then known as Antonio, fought in World War II along the Italian partisans against the Nazis.

Later and under the name Antonio de Teffé, he worked behind the scenes in several Italian productions in the early 50's and later acted in several movies, but never really achieving stardom. In 1962, he had a bit part in Sodom and Gomorrah. An early appearance of his was in the 1955 Gli Sbandati.

From 1965 to 1975, the newly named Anthony Steffen achieved considerable fame in Europe, amassing cult status, starring in 27 Spaghetti Westerns. Considered to be an "Italian Clint Eastwood", he was sometimes unfairly criticized for being a stiff or wooden actor. Several of his movies were sizeable box office hits in Europe.

Django the Bastard (aka Stranger's Gundown, 1969) a movie that was produced and written by Steffen, is considered to be an inspiration for Clint Eastwood's High Plains Drifter. In several of his movies, Steffen starred alongside other Spaghetti Western luminaries such as Gianni Garko, Peter Lee Lawrence, and William Berger. Outside of the Spaghetti western genre, Steffen also appeared in several Giallo movies including The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave (1971). His roles and status diminished as the Spaghetti Western genre fell into decline. Amassing a considerable fortune from his career as an actor, Steffen embarked on a jet set lifestyle.

In his career Steffen performed alongside Sophia Loren, Gina Lollobrigida, Claudia Cardinale, Elke Sommer, Giuliano Gemma, Franco Nero, Gian Maria Volonté, Esmeralda Barros and many other stars of the American and Italian cinema.

Always considered a huge star in Brazil because of the Spaghetti Western popularity in the South American country, Steffen returned to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in the decade of 1980, until dying of cancer in 2004. He has maintained cult-status among fans of Italian Cinema for being perhaps the most prolific Spaghetti Western Leading actor.

Selected filmography


This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.