Golden Globe winner Christine Kaufmann has died at the age of 72.

Christine Kaufmann

Christine Kaufmann

The German actress passed away on Monday night (27.3.17) at a hospital in Munich after battling with leukaemia.

In a statement, her management and family expressed their grief over the death of the Hollywood icon.

They said: "With much sorrow and grief, we have to say goodbye to our beloved Christine Kaufmann, our friend and professional partner. She died in Munich alongside her family. Christine Kaufmann was 72-years old.

"Christine was an exceptional and wonderful woman, a very warm-hearted person with an ageless love for life. Her endless wisdom, her poetical way and her unlimited tolerance and love for people will make her unforgettable.

"She loved her family, was a reliable friend and charmed everyone with her unique charm, humour and love for life. We will miss Christine very much and bid farewell to a great actress, author and creator of a successful beauty line. Her remarkable oeuvre and the memory of her will stay with us forever."

Her tragic death comes after she was rushed to hospital last week when she suddenly collapsed and was put into a medically-induced coma.

Hollywood star Kirk Douglas sent his well-wishes to his former co-star at the time, adding: "She is one of the most charming and affectionate women I have ever met. And a fighter."

Kaufmann started her film career at the tender age of nine. With roles in 'The Last Days of Pompeii' and 'Town Without Pity', she gained international recognition. In 1961, she picked up the Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year before marrying American film legend Tony Curtis, who she met on the set of 'Taras Bulba', in 1963 at the age of 18. Curtis was 20 years her senior and they had two daughters, Alexandra and Allegra. However, they divorced in 1968 and Kaufmann went back to Germany to focus on her film career. During her long career, she also launched her own beauty line and published several books that focused on health and lifestyle.

Her children were left with a bitter feeling after the death of their father Tony Curtis in September 2010. The actor always acknowledged that he did a poor job as a father and failed to include any of his six children in his will. Although his worth is estimated to be as much as $60 million, his children were not included in the will in favour of his spouse Jill Vandenberg Curtis.

Kaufmann said at the time: "Everything the children should have, Jill has ... I do believe that deep down inside he was a nice Jewish father, and you know that nice Jewish fathers do not disinherit their children. Tony was on strong painkillers at the end, and they make you really stoned."

However, the testament in his will read: "I acknowledge the existence of my children ... and have intentionally and with full knowledge chosen not to provide for them in this last will and testament."

Kaufmann is survived by her children Alexandra, 52, Allegra, 50, and her grandchildren Elisabeth, 31, and Dido, 31.

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