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Soledad Miranda

This is a fairy tale, and begins like all. The protagonist is a poor but beautiful and talented girl. Then the tale goes on as usual, she works hard, she became famous and finds love. Unfortunately she didn’t live "Happily ever after” because the end is not happy.
This is the summary of the life of Soledad Miranda, lovely Spanish actress. Gorgeous. A natural beauty, magnetic, which conquer at first glance. Try to see one of her movies and try to be indifferent. It’s impossible.
Her beauty is accompanied by a great artistic skill. A natural talent that surprised, as we will see the good Christopher Lee. Soledad Miranda was a ray of sunshine in the world of cinema, so bright that at thirty years after her death she is still remembered. Thanks also to the appreciation of Franco’s movies.
Rendon Soledad Bueno born in 1943 in Seville, in a poor family of Portuguese descent. Eldest of six children, grandson of the famous flamenco dancer Paquita Rico. At eight years she already dances on Andalusia’s stages. With art in the blood and an iron will, Soledad, moves very young to Madrid. She studies acting and works, efforts which led her to debut as a dancer in the comedy "La Reina Del Jabarin" 1960, directed by a young Jesus Franco, in his third experience.
A meeting important for the career of both.
Soledad Miranda is a name and a face that begins to circulate successfully in the world of cinema. In four years she stars in about fifteen movies, of different genres and directors, from peplum "Ursus", drama "Cancion de Cuna", the comedy "Eva 63" horror "El Sonido de La Muerte" and also finding time for gossip with an alleged affair with the bullfighter Manuel Benitez Perez.
But it is in 1964 that true love arrives. She plays in Portugal in three films: "Los Gatos Negros", "A Canção de Saudade" and "Un Dia En Lisboa", in which there is an actor Jose Manuel Simões, former rally driver, with whom after playing a couple of lovers in "Un Dia En Lisboa" and after a brief and secret engagement, married in 1966.
Also in 1964 Soledad Miranda try the music career recording an LP with four songs, an experience that is repeated a year after.
In 1967 born Antonio the couple's son. Jose retired from racing and cinema to work in the automotive industry and Soledad takes a short artistic break.
This pause doesn’t bring luck to the actress that once back at work, struggling to find the right way and ends up on the edge, with a few appearances
She seems doomed to oblivion but the great Jesus Franco, who made her debut on the big screen, has a brilliant idea and wants her at all costs in the role of Lucy for his "El Conde Dracula".
It’s a second baptism that changes the image of Soledad Miranda making her a dark icon of the Spanish director movies. He is so convinced of his choice to go against the ideas of the legendary Christopher Lee, as said by Franco in this great interview published on Splattercontainer
"She didn’t know anything, was almost illiterate, she was a "gipsy de Sevilla". She had an amazing presence and a great strength; she understood everything on the fly. She was very clever. She had an unexplained gift passing right from the screen to the viewer. Many times she doesn’t even know how she has some wonderful expressions because she was intuitive. Although mine was a good intuition. With her I have made some wonderful movies thanks to her skill. The first was El Conde Dracula (1969) with Christopher Lee, who was really worried that he said: "They told me you've hired a sevillana gypsy for the role of Lucy. Lucy can’t be a girl of Seville!" I said, “Christopher, work one day with her, and then give me your opinion. If you don’t like her I will change" Lee was surprised by my reaction. The next day after shooting the first two scenes he told me to be very pleased with Soledad".

The artistic combination works wonders and continues in other projects. "Sex Charade", "Les Cauchemars naissent la nuit", "Juliette", "Der Teufel kam aus Akasava", "She Killed In Ecstasy" and "Eugenie" based on a novel of De Sade and considered the most intense interpretation of the actress. Among there is "Vampyros Lesbos" the Franco’s masterpiece who, in the same interview says:
"This film is very nice and thanks to Soledad has become exceptional. I did not really ever thought about certain things. I don’t mind if the film became two minutes longer because I shot a close-up of Soledad. She was for all a real surprise. The talented German producer with whom I worked on this film was fond, but he didn’t want anything strange. He liked her talent"

The period with the Spanish director is characterized by stylish horror and thriller with erotic and superb images. The dark and divine icon of Franco appears often naked, never vulgar, very graceful and intense. Cause of these scenes and these subjects, Soledad Miranda often prefer to work with different pseudonyms: Susan Korda, Susann Korda or Susan Korday, created by Franco and inspired by a German actress.
With all the doors, re-opened, things seem go very well. The filming of "The Devil Came from Akasava" is about to end and Soledad with her husband went for a short time in Portugal. The actress is waiting to receive important film and theater offers that seem about to go through.

On August 18, she and José are driving along the highway from Lisbon to Estoril, the same road of "Un dia en Lisboa". Their car crashed into a truck. Jose is wounded but in good condition. Soledad fractured skull and spine. She falls into a coma and died a few hours later in the hospital of the capital.
So dies a pearl of cinema, unforgotten and unforgettable. Her death casts a shadow on the next works of Franco, visibly darker. It remains a question, a question that many are asking,
 "She is the most beautiful actress of all time?”.