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Christiane Martel
Christiane Magnani

(1935-01-18) 18 January 1935 (age 89)
  • Actress
  • beauty queen
Years active 1954–1962
Height 5 ft 6 in (168 cm)
Title Miss Universe 1953
Spouse(s) Ronnie Morengo (divorced)
Miguel Aleman Velasco
Children 4, including Miguel
Beauty pageant titleholder
Miss Cinémonde 1953
Miss Universe 1953
Christiane Martel in 1953 (cropped)
Martel in 1953

Christiane Martel (born Christiane Magnani on 18 January 1935) is a French actress, model and beauty queen. She became the second woman to win Miss Universe in 1953. She was the only French woman to hold the Miss Universe title until Iris Mittenaere in 2016. She is one of the last surviving stars from the Golden Age of Mexican cinema.

Life and career

Martel was born in Nancy, France to a modest family of Italian ancestry and was raised in Piennes. Amid the Second World War, her family moved to Western France, and later, in 1940, to Loudun.

1952–1953: Pageantry

She was Miss Châtellerault in 1952. She was crowned Miss Cinémonde and represented France at Miss Universe 1953 where she became the second Miss Universe. She was crowned by actress, Julie Adams as Miss Universe 1952, Armi Kuusela of Finland gave up her crown.

Martel's runners-up in the 1953 pageant was Myrna Hansen of the USA, followed by delegates of Japan, Mexico, and Australia.

1954–1962: Acting career

Shortly after her reign, Martel embarked on a successful career in international films, appearing in movies such as Yankee Pasha, So This Is Paris, Drop the Curtain, the 1956 version of Corazón salvaje (playing the villain Aimée), Viva el Amor!, Rosa Blanca and her last film to date, 1961's Leoni al Sole.

Later activities

Later, Martel served as a judge at the Miss Universe 1978 pageant. She would also make made television appearances at the Miss Universe pageants held in 1989, 1993, and 2007, all of which were held in Mexico. Her most recent television appearance in France was on 3 December 2011 at the Miss France pageant. She appeared in the Mexican television show, Sale el sol in 2017 where she was interviewed.

Personal life

Martel was married briefly to Ronnie Marengo, a department store heir, whom she divorced in 1955. In 1961 she married Miguel Alemán Velasco, who would become Governor of Veracruz and is the son of Miguel Alemán Valdés, former president of Mexico. They have three daughters and one son. Their son, Miguel Alemán Magnani, is a stakeholder of Televisa and the owner of low-cost airline, Interjet.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Christiane Martel para niños

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