Less than a month after her old mucker Franco Zeffirelli passed on, Valentina Cortese has swapped day for night. Cortese had a varied career, and was perhaps the only actress who was both a former contract system player (she signed with 20th Century Fox in 1948), and a favourite of the European arthouse directors of the era. With the former she starred in the likes of The Barefoot Contessa with Humphrey Bogart and Thieves’ Highway with Lee J. Cobb, and the latter she served as a muse for the likes of Truffaut, Antonioni and the aforementioned Zeffirelli. She was Oscar-nominated in 1973 for her role in Truffaut’s Day for Night, and one day I’ll actually get around to watching that movie. Which shouldn’t be hard as it has been shown at every single university town film festival for the past 45 years.