“Powerful, enduring relationships can sometimes develop between a photographer and his or her subjects. Such was most definitely the case with LIFE’s Alfred Eisenstaedt and the luminous Italian movie star Sophia Loren. Over the course of their decades-long friendship, Eisenstaedt would take countless pictures of the Oscar-winning legend — most of which never made it into the pages of LIFE magazine (and many of which were never intended for the magazine).
Loren appeared on LIFE’s cover seven times through the 1950s and ’60s.”
Here are some of these great shots: