13/01/2015 07:21 GMT | Updated 20/05/2015 06:12 BST

Vintage Portfolio: Anita Ekberg

When Federico Fellini cast Anita Ekberg as Sylvia in the 1960 film La Dolce Vita, he transformed a rising Swedish star into a true movie icon.


Ekberg, who passed away aged 83 on 11 January, found fame in the mid 1950s with roles in Hollywood or Bust and War and Peace.

However, the former Miss Sweden will forever be remembered for the moment she calls to Marcello Mastroianni's character as she stands in Rome's Trevi Fountain wearing a strapless black gown. It's the scene that secured her status as Hollywood's blonde bombshell and has inspired many of fashion's little black dresses ever since.

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Tributes Pour in for Anita Ekberg

She continued to work with Fellini - Ekberg starred alongside Sophia Loren in Boccaccio '70 (1962) and played herself in The Clowns (1970) and Intervista (1987) - and almost 40 years after she played her most famous role, the actress was ranked number 14 in Playboy's 100 Sexiest Stars of the Century.

In an interview with Australia's Daily Telegraph in 2000, the actress said, "Sometimes I think I will always be remembered because of La Dolce Vita. That's very satisfying. I am Anita Ekberg, and everyone in the world knows me."

Flick through the slideshow below to see some of Anita's most iconic looks (including that La Dolce Vita dress) from over the years.

Katharine Hepburn

Veronica Lake

Elizabeth Taylor

Brigitte Bardot

Vivien Leigh

Billie Holiday