Asia Argento (born 20 September 1975) is an Italian television and
film actress and director.
Her mother is actress Daria Nicolodi and her father is Dario Argento, an Italian film director, producer and screenwriter, well known for his work in the Italian giallo genre and for his influence on modern horror and slasher movies. Her great-grandfather was composer Alfredo Casella.
When Asia Argento was born in Rome, the city registry office refused to acknowledge Asia as an appropriate name, and instead officially inscribed her as Aria Argento. Asia Argento nonetheless uses the name Asia Argento professionally. Asia has said that as a child she was lonely and depressed due, in part, to her parents' work. Her father used to read her his scripts as bedtime stories. At age eight, Asia published a book of poems. At the age of fourteen, she ran away from home. She was also an introvert and read to make up for having no friends.
In an interview with Filmmaker Magazine she stated that she was agoraphobic while she was writing Scarlet Diva and that she could not leave her apartment for months. Asia Argento said: "I was afraid to go out of my apartment for a long time, I could only go out to work."
Asia has mentioned in interviews that she does not have a close relationship with her father. Asia Argento has mentioned that he was absent when she was a child. Asia Argento has also mentioned that she did not have a happy childhood. Regarding her relationship with her father and her reason for acting, she has stated that:
I never acted out of ambition; I acted to gain my father’s attention. It took a long time for him to notice me – I started when I was nine, and he only cast me when I was 16. And he only became my father when he was my director. I always thought it was sick to choose looking at yourself on a big screen as your job. There has to be something crooked in your mind to want to be loved by everybody. It’s like being a prostitute, to share that intimacy with all those people.
Asia Argento started acting at the age of nine playing a small part in a film by Sergio Citti. Asia Argento also had a small part in a film written and produced by Dario Asia in, The Church (1989), when she was 14, and Trauma (1993), when she was 18. She also had her first nude scene during this film. She received the David di Donatello (Italy's version of Hollywood's Academy Award) for Best Actress in 1994 for her performance in Perdiamoci di vista!, and again in 1996 for Compagna di viaggio, which also earned her a Grolla d'oro award. In 1998, Asia began appearing in English-language movies, such as B. Monkey and New Rose Hotel, with Christopher Walken.
Asia has proven her ability to work in multiple languages, adding French to the list of languages in which she has performed, with a role in 1994's La Reine Margot. That same year, she made her first foray into directing, calling the shots behind the short films Prospettive and A ritroso. In 1996, she directed a documentary on her father, and in 1998 a second one on Abel Ferrara, which won her the Rome Film Festival Award. She directed and wrote her first movie called Scarlet Diva (2000), which was co-produced by Dario Argento. Four years later directed her second movie, The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things (2004), based on a book by JT LeRoy, the pen name of Laura Albert, this time in the United States. According to a Paris Review interview with Laura Albert, Asia and Savannah Knoop, who played the role of JT's public persona, became lovers.
In addition to her cinematic accomplishments, Asia has written a number of stories for magazines such as Dynamo and L'Espresso, while her first novel, titled I Love You Kirk, was published in Italy in 1999. She has modeled for and endorses the brand "Miss Sixty". The band Hondo Maclean from South Wales, gained Argento's interest when they wrote a track named after her. She liked the track so much she sent them pictures which they used as the cover of their 2004 EP Chasing Angels.
From 17 to 25 October 2006, Asia contributed a video diary to Nick Knight's website, SHOWstudio. The title of the 54 entries/episodes was "Don't Bother To Knock" and detailed Argento's daily life with three entries (noon, 6 pm and midnight) posted every day. The content of the entries were partially controlled by a discussion forum and together formed a cohesive whole, a sort of "mini-movie" anyone could view for free. In the clips Asia discusses topics such as freaks, her father, Fellini and her sexuality; she also journals a pregnancy, a new love interest and her unraveling psyche. All of these issues come to a head before Argento's final revelations and good-byes. The last visual of the diary is a digitally manipulated portrait of Asia taken by Knight, slowly burning away.
Asia Argentoappeared in Placebo's music video, This Picture, and featured on a cover version of Je t'aime... moi non plus with Placebo frontman Brian Molko and dance producers Trash Palace. Asia has also starred in Catherine Breillat's period drama, Une vieille maîtresse (The Last Mistress).
Asia Argento dubbed the Italian version of the video game Mirror's Edge in the role of the Runner Faith Connors.
Besides Italian, she also speaks fluent Russian and English. She can also speak French, which she learned for her role in Les Morsures de L’Aube.
Asia has been romantically linked with Vincent Gallo, Sergio Rubini, Michael Pitt, and Jonathan Rhys-Meyers.
Asia Argento's first child, Anna Lou, was born on 20 June 2001. Italian rock and roll musician Marco Castoldi (lead singer of Bluvertigo), also known as Morgan, is the father. She named her daughter after her half-sister Anna Ceroli, who died in a motorcycle accident. She and her daughter live in Rome.
Asia married film director Michele Civetta on 27 August 2008 in Arezzo. Her second child, Nicola Giovanni, was born on 15 September 2008 in Rome.
This Asia Argento Biography Page is Copyright © 2004 - 2009 Chuck Ayoub