Monica Bellucci was born September 30, 1968, in the village of Citta di Castello, in Umbria, Italy. Her father owned a truck company. Not much is known about her growing up years.
After enrolling at the University of Perugia to study law, in 1987 at 18 years of age, she took up modelling to pay the tuition fees on her own. A year later she left her studies as the glamorous life, travelling, fame etc beckoned.
She relocated to Milan to join the Elite Modelling Agency. Monica Bellucci is one of the few Italian models to have reached the top of her profession, but she decided to study acting, hoping to find parts in films. Bellucci appeared in international advertising campaigns for designers such as Dolce & Gabbana when her modeling career was in full swing.
She debuted on screen in 1990 in the television film Vita Coi Figli. Monica starred as Francesca in the film La Riffa, in 1991 and made her American film debut with the role of Dracula's Bride, in 1992's Bram Stoker's Dracula, co-starring Winona Ryder.
Monica also did a couple of Italian films but was frustrated with the failure of Italy's film industry to promote its projects abroad. She starred opposite Ben Kingsley and Dominique Sanda in the American television movie Joseph, 1995, before looking for work in French films.
In 1996 Monica was nominated for the C�sar, the French Oscar, as best promising actress in the movie L'appartement which shot her to stardom. After roles in more European films such as L'Ultimo capodanno, A los que aman, and M�diterran�es, she also starred in Comme un poisson hors de l'eau.
Her luck sustained and this stunning brunette bagged a role as Gene Hackman's wife in the movie Under Suspicion in 2000. She had appeared in a black & white TV commercial for Dolce & Gabbana. And it was this director Giuseppe Tornatore, who also directed her in the movie Mal�na, 2000, where she captivated moviegoers with her beauty and talent.
Monica followed up Mal�na's success with another international hit, Christophe Gans' genre hybrid Le Pacte des Loups (Brotherhood of the Wolf), 2002. She also starred in Ast�rix & Ob�lix: Mission Cl�opatre, as the seductive Cleopatra.
Soon after, Bruce Willis personally chose Bellucci to play a humanitarian doctor whom he must save from war-torn Nigeria in Hostile Rescue, director Antoine Fuqua's follow-up to his hit Training Day, 2001. She starred with Keanu Reeves for The Matrix Reloaded, 1999, The Matrix Reloaded, 2003, and The Matrix Revolution, 2003.
Though this sultry icon is a well-established superstar and is at the heights of her career, her one dream remains unfulfilled as yet: that of working with Robert De Niro - the Hollywood Legend.