Lorraine Bracco

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Lorraine Bracco
Lorraine Bracco.jpg
Lorraine Bracco, 2007
Born (1954-10-02) October 2, 1954 (age 59)
Brooklyn, New York City, U.S.
Occupation Actress
Years active 1979–present
Spouse(s) Daniel Guerard (m. 1979–82)
Edward James Olmos (m. 1994–2002)
Partner(s) Harvey Keitel (1982–1993)
Children 2

Lorraine Bracco (born October 2, 1954)[1] 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.

Early life[edit]

Bracco as a senior in high school, 1972.

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.[2] 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.[3][4] Bracco is fluent in English, French and Italian.

Career[edit]

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.[5]

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.[6] 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.

Personal life[edit]

Bracco has been married and divorced twice. Her first marriage was to Daniel Guerard from the late 1970s to the early 1980s. They have one daughter, Margaux Guerard.

She was in a 12-year relationship with actor Harvey Keitel. They have one daughter, Stella Keitel (b. 1985). Bracco and Keitel fought a lengthy custody battle over Stella, resulting in Bracco's depression, a loss of acting roles, and $2 million in legal fees.[7][8]

She married Edward James Olmos in 1994. They divorced in 2002.

She is the owner of Bracco Wines, with association of Straight-Up Brands LLC.[9] 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.[10] 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.[11]

Bracco also appeared on a season 6 episode of Throwdown! with Bobby Flay as a guest judge for the ravioli throwdown.[12]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
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?
Barbara
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 Sing Miss Lombardo
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
1991 Switch Sheila Faxton
1992 Medicine Man Dr. Rae Crane Nominated—Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress
1992 Radio Flyer Mary
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 Being Human Anna
1994 Getting Gotti Diane Giacalone Television movie
1995 Basketball Diaries, TheThe Basketball Diaries Jim's Mother
1995 Hackers Margo
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
2000 Ladies Room Gemma
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

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1980 Commissaire Moulin Jenny Episode: "Le transfuge"
1986 Crime Story Hostage Episode: "Hide and Go Thief"
1999–2007 Sopranos, TheThe Sopranos Dr. Jennifer Melfi 69 episodes
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2000, 2008)
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama (2000–02)
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series (2000–02)
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series (2000, 2002–03)
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2001–03, 2005, 2007)
2005 Law & Order: Trial by Jury Karla Grizano Episode: "Vigilante"
2008 Lipstick Jungle Janice Lasher 2 episodes
2010 Law & Order: Criminal Intent Halfway House Matron Episode "Disciple"
2010–present Rizzoli & Isles Angela Rizzoli 54 episodes
2011 I Married a Mobster Narrator 10 episodes

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Association Category Nominated work Result
1990 Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards Best Supporting Actress Goodfellas Nominated
New York Film Critics Circle Awards Best Supporting Actress Nominated
1991 Academy Awards Best Supporting Actress Nominated
Chicago Film Critics Association Awards Best Supporting Actress Won
Golden Globe Awards Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture Nominated
1993 Razzie Awards Worst Actress Medicine Man Nominated
Traces of Red Nominated
1999 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series The Sopranos Nominated
2000 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Television Series Drama Nominated
Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series Nominated
Satellite Awards Best Actress – Television Series Drama Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series Nominated
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Won
2001 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Television Series Drama Nominated
Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Nominated
2002 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress – Television Series Drama Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series Nominated
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Nominated
2003 Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series Nominated
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Nominated
2005 Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Nominated
2007 Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Nominated
2008 Monte-Carlo Television Festival Outstanding Actress – Drama Series Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Won

Bibliography[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bracco On the Couch, p. 38.
  2. ^ http://www.nyjnews.com/obits/Obit1.php?pid=3103578
  3. ^ Jay Carr (October 15, 1987). "Lorraine Bracco Savors Her Big Break As A Hollywood Strong Woman". The Boston Globe. 
  4. ^ Witchel, Alex (September 27, 1990). "A Mafia Wife Makes Lorraine Bracco a Princess". The New York Times. 
  5. ^ Daniel Simone (December 14, 2007). "Who's Here: Lorraine Bracco – Actor". Dan's Papers. Archived from the original on 2008-12-11. 
  6. ^ Bracco On the Couch[page needed]
  7. ^ John Lombardi (January 12, 1998). "Scenes From a Bad Movie Marriage". New York Magazine. 
  8. ^ Bracco On the Couch, p. 129.
  9. ^ "Straight Up Brands, Inc. (STRU) Acquires Wine and Spirits Venture". CNNMoney.com. Market Wire. August 24, 2006. Retrieved 2014-03-06. 
  10. ^ 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. 
  11. ^ "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.
  12. ^ "Ravioli". Throwdown! with Bobby Flay. Season 6. March 25, 2009. Food. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2207241/. Retrieved 2014-03-06.

External links[edit]