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Pia Zadora

From Academic Kids

Pia Zadora (born May 4, 1954) is an American actress and singer.

Born Pia Schipani in Hoboken, New Jersey, she took her mother's maiden name as her stage name. Her first appearance was in 1964's infamous Santa Claus Conquers the Martians, as Girmar, the Girl Martian. She won a Golden Globe as 1982's "Most Promising New Star," but also won "Worst New Star" in the 1982 Golden Raspberry Awards.

Her movie career has been a series of lows, with no hits, and with further Golden Raspberries to her credit, including "Worst New Star of the Decade" in the 1989 Golden Raspberry Awards.

She has attained some success as a singer, and has had several hit singles throughout the world. In 1982, she received a nomination for a Grammy Award for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance. Her cover version of the Shirley Ellis hit, "The Clapping Song", reached the U.S. Top 40 in 1983, and she had a minor hit with a duet with Jermaine Jackson titled "When The Rain Begins To Fall" in 1984. (In Germany, this song was a number 1 hit for four weeks.) Release of "Pia & Phil," album of standards with The London Philharmonic 1987.

Zadora gained notoriety when she and her wealthy husband, Meshulam Riklis, the owner of McCrory's, among other businesses, bought the Beverly Hills landmark mansion Pickfair in 1988 and demolished it. The mansion, former home of early movie stars Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford, was one of Beverly Hills' most famous privately owned properties, and its destruction gained Zadora intense criticism.

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