Lorraine Bracco, 2007
October 2, 1954 |
New York, NY, U.S.
Daniel Guerard (m. 1979–82)
|Partner(s)||Harvey Keitel (1982–1993)|
Lorraine Bracco (born October 2, 1954) is an American actress. She is best known for her roles as Dr. Jennifer Melfi on the HBO series The Sopranos and as Karen Hill in the 1990 Martin Scorsese film Goodfellas. She currently appears as Angela Rizzoli on the TNT series Rizzoli & Isles.
Bracco was born in the Brooklyn, New York City neighborhood of Bay Ridge. She is the daughter of Eileen (née Molyneux) and Salvatore Bracco, Sr. Bracco grew up in Westbury, on Barry Drive on Long Island. She graduated from Hicksville High School in 1972. Her father was of Italian descent, while her mother was born in England, to French parents. Bracco is fluent in English, French, and Italian.
In 1974 Bracco moved to France, where she became a fashion model for Jean-Paul Gaultier. While there, she was introduced to the director and novelist Lina Wertmüller. In the early 1970s, Wertmuller recruited Bracco in a new film production titled Camorra. "She dressed me up like an Italian woman of no means. A street woman clad in disheveled clothes, hair unkempt and all that, and threw me on the set. She was so creative. I mean, Lina accentuated my eyes with dark make-up, the way Sophia Loren used to appear in those epic roles in the '60s. And talk about talent. She's so bright and perceptive. I mean, she's just fantastic. And yes, I learned a lot from her. She's a master of her profession, and I've been blessed not only with her, but also with so many masters," recounted Bracco to Daniel Simone during a 2007 interview.
Bracco acted in several French-language films. She also once worked as a disc jockey for Radio Luxembourg. She appeared as Paul Guilfoyle's hostage in the first season Crime Story episode, "Hide and Go Thief". Her sister Elizabeth played a hostage in the series pilot. Her other films include Someone to Watch Over Me, Riding in Cars with Boys, The Basketball Diaries, Medicine Man, Radio Flyer and Hackers.
Bracco received her big career break when offered the role as the mobster-wife Karen Hill in Goodfellas, which earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress and was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture. She won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress and the Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress.
During the audition process for The Sopranos, David Chase wanted her to read for the lead female role of Carmela Soprano. However, Bracco had read the script and was drawn to the part of psychiatrist Dr. Jennifer Melfi. Bracco felt strongly enough about her ability and desire to play this part that she arranged a meeting with David Chase and talked him into letting her have a chance as Dr. Melfi. It netted her three consecutive nominations for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series at the Emmy Awards in 1999, 2000 and 2001 and at the Golden Globe awards for Best TV Actress in a Drama in 2000, 2001 and 2002. She lost out at the Emmys in 1999 and 2001 and at the Golden Globes in 2000 to her co-star Edie Falco. She was nominated again at the 2007 Emmy Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, thus being pitted against The Sopranos co-star Aida Turturro for the award.
Bracco has been married and divorced twice. Her first marriage was to Daniel Guerard from the late 1970s to the early 1980s, and they have one daughter, Margaux Guerard. She was in a 12-year relationship with actor Harvey Keitel, and they have one daughter, Stella Keitel (1985). Bracco and Keitel had a lengthy custody battle over Stella; it caused her depression, cost her acting roles, and $2 million in legal fees. Following her breakup with Keitel, she married Edward James Olmos in 1994. Their marriage ended in 2002.
She is the owner of Bracco Wines, with association of Straight-Up Brands LLC. Her line of wines was featured on the Season 1 finale of Bravo's show Top Chef in 2006. She appeared as a guest judge for the two-episode finale. She also appeared as a special judge on Top Chef: All Stars in the episode titled, "An Offer They Can't Refuse" which featured Italian cuisine.
|1979||Duos sur canapé||Bubble|
|1980||What Did I Ever Do to the Good Lord to Deserve
a Wife Who Drinks in Cafes with Men?
|1981||Fais gaffe à la gaffe!||Margaux|
|1985||Un complicato intrigo di donne, vicoli e delitti||(uncredited)|
|1987||Pick-Up Artist, TheThe Pick-Up Artist||Carla|
|1987||Someone to Watch Over Me||Ellie Keegan|
|1989||Dream Team, TheThe Dream Team||Riley|
|1989||Up to Date||Sheila|
|1989||Sea of Love||Denice Gruber||scenes deleted|
|1990||Goodfellas||Karen Hill||Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress (3rd place)
Nominated—Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
|1991||Talent for the Game||Bobbie|
|1992||Medicine Man||Dr. Rae Crane||Nominated—Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress|
|1992||Traces of Red||Ellen Schofield||Nominated—Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress|
|1993||Even Cowgirls Get the Blues||Delores Del Ruby|
|1993||Scam||Maggie Rohrer||Television movie|
|1994||Getting Gotti||Diane Giacalone||Television movie|
|1995||Basketball Diaries, TheThe Basketball Diaries||Jim's Mother|
|1996||Liars, TheThe Liars||Helene Miller|
|1996||Reckoning||Kits Maitland||Television movie|
|1997||Silent Cradle||Helen Greg|
|1998||Taking of Pelham One Two Three, TheThe Taking of Pelham One Two Three||Det. Ray||Television movie|
|2001||Riding in Cars with Boys||Mrs. Teresa Donofrio|
|2001||Tangled||Det. Anne Andersle|
|2001||Sex in Our Century||Narrator||Television movie|
|2003||Custody of the Heart||Claire Raphael||Television movie|
|2003||Death of a Dynasty||Enchante R&B Singer #2|
|2005||Crazy for Love||Sheila|
|2007||Snowglobe||Rose Moreno||Television movie|
|2008||Long Island Confidential||Norah Larkin||Television movie|
|2011||Son of Morning||Leda|
|2012||Bensonhurst Spelling Bee, TheThe Bensonhurst Spelling Bee||Unknown||Short film|
Awards and nominations
- On the Couch (Putnam Adult, 2006) ISBN 0-399-15356-X
- Bracco On the Couch, p. 38.
- Jay Carr (October 15, 1987). "Lorraine Bracco Savors Her Big Break As A Hollywood Strong Woman". The Boston Globe.
- Witchel, Alex (September 27, 1990). "A Mafia Wife Makes Lorraine Bracco a Princess". The New York Times.
- Daniel Simone (December 14, 2007). "Who's Here: Lorraine Bracco – Actor". Dan's Papers. Archived from the original on 2008-12-11.
- Bracco On the Couch[page needed]
- John Lombardi (January 12, 1998). "Scenes From a Bad Movie Marriage". New York Magazine.
- Bracco On the Couch, p. 129.
- "Straight Up Brands, Inc. (STRU) Acquires Wine and Spirits Venture". CNNMoney.com. Market Wire. August 24, 2006. Retrieved 2014-03-06.
- Top Chef: The Cookbook: Original Interviews and Recipes from Bravo's Hit Show. Chronicle Books. October 21, 2011. p. 53. ISBN 978-0-8118-7522-6.
- "An Offer They Can't Refuse". Top Chef. Season 8. February 2, 2011. Bravo. http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef/season-8/episode-8-an-offer-they-cant-refuse. Retrieved 2014-03-06.
- "Ravioli". Throwdown! with Bobby Flay. Season 6. March 25, 2009. Food. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2207241/. Retrieved 2014-03-06.
- Lorraine Bracco at the Internet Movie Database
- Cast profile at the-sopranos.com
- New York Times interview
- Bracco Wines
- Bracco Wines straight up brands
- IgoUgo interview