Giuliano Gemma died yesterday, October 1st, in a tragic accident near Rome. His car was involved in a terrible front-end collision with another high-powered vehicle. The actor, who had turned 75 in September, died while being transported to the hospital.
Crowned the “King of Italian-style western” after the success of movies such as “A Pistol for Ringo”, “Adiós gringo”, “The Return of Ringo”, “One Silver Dollar”, “For a Few Extra Dollars”, and “Day of Anger” – which were outstanding blockbusters both in Italy and abroad – Gemma starred alongside icons of the silver screen like Henry Fonda, Kirk Douglas, Rita Hayworth, Klaus Kinsky, Ernest Borgnine, Philippe Noiret, Claudia Cardinale, and Alain Delon.
By the end of the 1970s, he decided to experiment with different genres and changed his image. He undertook more complex roles, for example in Valerio Zurlini’s “The Desert of the Tartars”, Comencini’s “Somewhere Beyond Love”, and Pasquale Squitieri’s “The Iron Prefect”. In the 1980s, he left his mark with performances such as the one in “Tenebrae”, directed by Dario Argento, and “Let’s Hope It’s a Girl” by Mario Monicelli.
The Roman actor returned to the Far West in 1985, when he took the role of Tex Willer – a famous Italian fictional character invented by Gian Luigi Bonelli and Aurelio Galleppini in 1948 – in “Tex and the Lord of the Deep” by Duccio Tessari, who a couple of decades earlier had directed some of the best “spaghetti westerns”.