Drea de Matteo

BATD ON Feb 04, 2010 AT 4:22 pm

Drea de Matteo

Drea de Matteo

There is a new housewife on Wisteria Lane, and she is adding some Italian sass to the neighbourhood. Drea de Matteo’s newest role is Angie Bolen, head of a New York family that is living in suburbia for the first time and has a secret to keep – don’t they always?

With a playwright for a mother, de Matteo grew up with acting on her mind. She went to NYU’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts, whose list of distinguished alums consist of Woody Allen, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Angelina Jolie, and several others. She was originally studying to be a director, but began getting noticed for her acting skills.

De Matteo is most famous for her role as Adriana La Cera on HBO’s The Sopranos, which somewhat fell into her lap. She auditioned for a one-time role of the bimbo restaurant hostess, but producers liked her acting so much, they signed her on permanently as Christopher’s girlfriend. She won the 2004 Emmy for Best Supporting Actress.

Drea with husband Shooter

Drea with husband Shooter

After “the family” uncovered her ties with the FBI, Adriana was murdered during season 6, perfect timing for de Matteo to begin working on Joey. Hesitant at first, she moved across the country in an RV to California to be Joey Tribbiani’s vibrant sister Gina in the Friends spinoff. She had never done a sitcom, but used the experience to learn a lot about a new kind of acting.

After doing several indie films, de Matteo settled down with country singer Shooter Jennings, son of the late Waylon Jennings. In 2007, she gave birth to their daughter Alabama Gypsy Rose. During one of Jennings’ 2009 concerts, he proposed. Embarrassed in front of all the fans, she said yes and joked that he better not turn her into, “one of those desperate housewives.” Literally the next day, she got a call from executive producer Marc Cherry wanting her to be the new character on Desperate Housewives.

She took the role and has never looked back. Working again in her typecast Italian American with an in-your-face accent, de Matteo is glad she isn’t playing a boring, normal girl chasing after a man in a romantic comedy. After being used to working with all men on the Sopranos’ set, being with women has been breath of fresh air.

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