Podestà also starred in the movie Ulisse (1955), directed by Mario Camerini, and in the sixties and seventies she acted in some romantic movies, including Paolo il caldo and Il prete sposatowhich lead to a double page of five half naked pictures in the US Playboy of March 1966. Under the headline "Trio Con Brio" featuring European actresses, she appeared alongside Christiane Schmidtmer (from Germany) and Shirley Ann Field (from the UK).
Podestà's most memorable role was as Helen in Helen of Troy, produced by Robert Wise in 1956. She could not speak English so she learned her lines by rote with a voice coach. The movie gave Podestà international exposure, and she performed alongside a young Brigitte Bardot. Thanks to her starring in the Mexican film Rossana, she became very popular in Latin America.
Her last performance was in Secrets Secrets (1985), directed by Giuseppe Bertolucci.