(news.bbc.co.uk) - Italian film producer Carlo Ponti, the husband of actress Sophia Loren, has died in Geneva at the age of 94.
He produced a number of film classics, including Federico Fellini's La Strada, David Lean's Dr Zhivago and Michelangelo Antonioni's Blowup.
Ponti was admitted to hospital about 10 days ago for pulmonary complications, the family said in a statement.
Ponti married Loren in 1957 when she was just 22 but the marriage was later annulled. They remarried in 1966.
"He died overnight," Loren's niece Alessandra Mussolini said. "It was a peaceful death, there was not a particular problem.
"His wife and children were with him. Sophia has always been with him throughout."
The producer spotted Loren when she took part in a beauty contest when she was just 15 and he was a 37-year-old judge.
Ponti groomed her for stardom, arranging for her to study acting and take English lessons.
He changed her name from Sophia Lazzaro and secured her roles in a number of low-budget Italian films.
Their careers blossomed simultaneously. In 1962 she won the best actress Oscar for Two Women (La Ciociara), produced by Ponti. Four years on he was nominated for an Oscar for Doctor Zhivago.
Ponti's other well-known films included The Cassandra Crossing, The Verdict and The Squeeze.