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Last Updated: Friday, 20 October 2006, 12:22 GMT 13:22 UK
Lollobrigida to marry younger man
Gina Lollobrigida and her future husband Javier Rigau Rafols
Gina Lollobrigida plans to marry before the end of the year
Italian actress Gina Lollobrigida has announced plans to marry for a second time to a man who is 34 years younger than her.

The 79-year-old said she first met Spaniard Javier Rigau Rafols at a party in Monte Carlo in 1984.

Lollobrigida told Spanish magazine Hola!: "I have always had a weakness for younger men because they are generous and have no complexes."

The couple intend to marry in New York later this year.


News of the intended wedding has featured heavily in the Italian press.

"They have gone mad here in Italy. I didn't think I was going to set off such a bomb," she said.

I have always had a weakness for younger men because they are generous and have no complexes
Gina Lollobrigida

The actress, known in her native country as La Lolla, divorced her first husband, Yugoslavian doctor Milko Skofic, in 1971.

Her screen career, which started in the 1940s, includes The World's Most Beautfiul Woman (1955) and Come September (1961) which won a Golden Globe award.

In the 1980s she appeared in the US television drama Falcon Crest, which gained her a Golden Globe nomination for best supporting actress.

Lollobrogida also worked with some of the biggest names in Hollywood such as Humphrey Bogart, Frank Sinatra, and Sean Connery.

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