Gila Golan

Gila Golan. IMDB.

Gila Golan
Gila Golan

Gila Golan was born in Krakow in Poland in 194o.   She came to Israel in 1951 and continued her studies there.In 1960 she won the beauty contest “Miss Israel” and came second in the “Miss World” contest of the same year.   She went to New York where she became a model and then secured a movie contract with Columbia Studios.   Among her films are “Ship of Fools” in 1965 with Vivien Leigh, “Three On a Couch” with Jerry Lewis and  “The Valley of Gwangi” in 1969, the year she retired from acting on her marriage.

IMDB entry:

Gila Golan’s career started as an Israeli fashion model, which led to appearances as a film actress. She was apparently born in Krakow, Poland, for she was discovered there in a train station during the German occupation in 1940.

She was adopted by a Roman Catholic couple and later sent to a boarding school in France before emigrating to Israel after World War II where she changed her name from Zusia Sobetzcki to Miriam Goldberg.

She became interested in fashion and her being spotted by an American photographer led to appearing in the Israeli magazine La’isha. It was a natural step for her to extend her fashion activities into the 1960 competition which led to her being crowned “Na’arat Israel” – Israel’s Maiden of Beauty (IMB) – or using international usage, “Miss Israel.” For this competition she changed her name to Gila Golan.

Such a change of names to one more typically Israeli was common at the time, but she may have done this to prevent any embarrassment to her religiously conservative family and friends. She went on to place second in the Miss World competition held later that year in London where she met the Columbia Pictures executive William Cohan and his wife.

This led to her entrance into films with a debut in Ship of Fools (1965). Cohen and his wife came to view her as sort of a foster daughter. She married three times and has several children and reportedly she now runs an investment business.

– IMDb Mini Biography By: Brian Greenhalgh

The anove IMDB entry can also be accessed online here.

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