Pamela Tiffin, star of the 1962 remake of “State Fair” who enjoyed major success in the U.S. and Italy before retiring from acting in 1974, died Friday of natural causes. She was 78.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Tiffin was hospitalized at the time of her death.
Born Pamela Tiffin Wonso in Oklahoma City but raised in Chicago, she began a public career as a teen model in the late 1950s. Her film career began during a trip to Los Angeles in 1961 when, while visiting the Paramount lot, she was spotted by powerhouse producer Hal B. Wallis (“Casablanca,” “True Grit”) and given a screen test.
She very quickly saw success as a burgeoning movie star, landing as her second film role one of the leads in Billy Wilder’s 1961 cold war comedy “One, Two, Three” starring James Cagney. She followed that up by landing the lead role of Margy Frake in the 1962 remake of the musical “State Fair” with Ann-Margret and Bobby Darin. Other credits from this period include “Come Fly with Me” (1963), “The Pleasure Seekers” (1964), “The Hallelujah Trail” (1965) and “Harper” (1966) with Paul Newman, as well as an appearance on “The Fugitive.”
Tiffin moved to Italy in 1967 and, over the next several years, starred in a series of successful films including “Torture Me but Kill Me With Kisses,” while occasionally returning to the U.S. to work. She retired from acting entirely in 1974 after marrying her second husband, Edmondo Danon. The couple had two daughters. Danon and their children survive her.
La Repubblica first reported the news.