Violante Placido is an Italian actress and singer. She is best known for playing the love interest to George Clooney in the 2010 thriller, "The American," as well as Nadya in "Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance."
Maria Violante Placido was born in Rome, Italy on May 1, 1976. From the very start, acting was in Violante's blood, as she was born to Simonetta Stefanelli, famous Italian actress and fashion designer, and Michele Placido, internationally known Italian actor and director, best known for his role as Corrado Cattani on the TV series, "La Piovra." By 1993, Violante was already making her big screen debut in the film, "Quattro bravi ragazzi," which also happened to star her father. It wasn't until three years later that she starred in her next film, "Vite strozzate," and then "Jack Frusciante e uscito dal gruppo" the very same year, which became a very famous film in Italy.
From here, Violante's acting career continued to take shape. In 2002, she starred in her most important film up until that point, "Soul Mate," which was an Italian fantasy-comedy which was based on a novel by the same name. The film went on to premiere at the 59th Venice International Film Festival. As she continued to act in her native Italy, Violante also passed the time writing music, eventually even releasing her first album in 2006, titled Don't Be Shy, under the pseudonym, Viola.
Of course, it wasn't until 2010 that Violante gained international fame. That year, she was cast in the George Clooney thriller, "The American," where she played prostitute and love interest, Clara. The very next year, she starred opposite Nicolas Cage in the Marvel comics adaptation, "Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance," which was a sequel to the original "Ghost Rider," which she did not star in. Since then, Violante returned to starring roles in Italian films such as the 2012 crime drama, "The Lookout."