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Last Updated: Thursday, 18 August 2005, 15:57 GMT 16:57 UK
Cinematographer Delli Colli dies
Life is Beautiful
Delli Colli's final film was Life is Beautiful starring Roberto Benigni
Cinematographer Tonino Delli Colli, who worked on some of Italy's most famous films, has died at the age of 81.

Rome-born Delli Colli shot more than 130 movies, including such "spaghetti westerns" as The Good the Bad and the Ugly and Once Upon a Time in the West.

He worked regularly with directors such as Sergio Leone, Federico Fellini, Roman Polanski and Pier Paolo Pasolini.

Delli Colli ended his career on a high in 1997 as director of photography on the Oscar-winning Life is Beautiful.

He was found dead in his Rome apartment on Wednesday morning, his niece Laura said on Thursday.

"He was one of those people who loved the set - it was his real family," she said.

'Colours and contrasts'

His funeral will be held on Friday at Santa Maria dei Miracoli in Rome's Piazza del Popolo.

Delli Colli began working at the city's famous Cinecitta studios in his teens, making his first film - Finalmente Si - in 1943.

He shot Italy's first colour movie, Toto a Colori, in 1952, and won four David di Donatello awards - the country's version of the Oscars.

"You must know the sun and the sea, the colours and the contrasts," he once said of his trade. "We Italians are masters of this."

He is survived by his son Stefano.

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