Melina Kanakaredes

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Melina Kanakaredes
Mélina Kanakaredes (Ohio 2009).JPG
Kanakaredes in Ohio, 2009
Born Melina Eleni Kanakaredes
(1967-04-23) April 23, 1967 (age 47)
Akron, Ohio, United States
Occupation Actress
Years active 1991–present
Spouse(s) Peter Constantinides (m. 1992)
Children 2

Melina Eleni Kanakaredes Constantinides (born April 23, 1967) is a Greek American actress. She is widely known for her roles in U.S. prime-time television dramas as Dr. Sydney Hansen in Providence (1999–2002) and as Detective Stella Bonasera in CSI: NY (2004–10), and on the American daytime television drama series Guiding Light as Eleni Andros Cooper.

Early life[edit]

Kanakaredes was born in Akron, Ohio, the daughter of Connie (née Temo), a candy company owner, and Harry Kanakaredes, an insurance salesman.[1][2] She is a second-generation Greek-American and speaks Greek.[3][4] Her two maternal uncles own and run a candy store in Akron called "Temo's Candy Company", a chocolate store established in its current location by Kanakaredes's grandfather, Christ Temo.[5] She has two sisters: Cornelia "Lia" and Aretta Kanakaredes.[citation needed]

At age 8, Kanakaredes made her stage debut in a production of Tom Sawyer at Weathervane Playhouse in Akron, Ohio.[6] She graduated from the Firestone High School in Akron.[4] She attended Ohio State University for a short time, and then transferred to Point Park College in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where she performed roles in the professional theatre scene there, including the role of Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar at Pittsburgh Musical Theater.[7] She graduated from Point Park in 1989 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in theater arts.[8]

Career[edit]

Television[edit]

Kanakaredes's first television role was on the daytime drama Guiding Light, originating the role of Eleni Andros Cooper from 1991 to 1995. She was nominated twice for a Daytime Emmy Award for her portrayal of Eleni.

Her most high-profile roles on television were as the series protagonist Dr. Sydney Hansen on Providence, which ran for five seasons between 1999 and 2002, and as Det. Stella Bonasera on the CBS drama series CSI: NY. Kanakaredes left CSI: NY in 2010, after six seasons on the program.[9]

Her other television credits include NYPD Blue (in a recurring role as reporter Benita Alden during that show's second season), Due South, Oz, The Practice, MTV's The Ben Stiller Show, and a Hallmark Hall of Fame adaptation of the Anne Tyler novel Saint Maybe.

Film[edit]

Kanakaredes's film appearances include The Long Kiss Goodnight as Trin and 15 Minutes as Nicolette Karas, the girlfriend of Robert De Niro's character. She was considered for the lead role in My Big Fat Greek Wedding but had to turn it down due to her pregnancy.[10] She played the role of the Greek Goddess Athena in Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief and starred in the 2013 drama Snitch alongside Dwayne (The Rock) Johnson.

Personal life[edit]

Kanakaredes married Peter Constantinides[11] on September 6, 1992.[12][13] Together, they have two daughters: Zoe (b. 2000) and Karina Eleni (b. 2003).[11] She and her husband, a former restaurant consultant,[11] owned the "Tria Greek Kuzina" in Powell, Ohio, but it has since closed.[14] When she was once asked why she does not use her husband's last name professionally, she stated, "It's even more difficult to pronounce than my maiden name."

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1987 Carts Short film
1994 Bleeding Hearts Daphne
1996 Long Kiss Goodnight, TheThe Long Kiss Goodnight Trin
1998 Dangerous Beauty Livia
1998 Rounders Barbara
2001 15 Minutes Nicolette Karas
2010 Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief Athena
2013 Snitch Sylvie Collins

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1991–95 Guiding Light Eleni Andros Cooper Recurring role
1995 Due South Victoria Metcalf 3 episodes
1995 New York News Angela Villanova Series
1995 NYPD Blue Benita Alden 5 episodes
1997 Leaving L.A. Libby Galante 6 episodes
1997 Practice, TheThe Practice Andrea Wexler Episodes: "First Degree", "Sex, Lies and Monkeys"
1998 Oz A.D.A. Marilyn Crenshaw Episode: "Great Men"
1998 Saint Maybe Rita Movie
1999–
2002
Providence Dr. Sydney Hansen Lead role
2004 CSI: Miami Stella Bonasera Episode: "MIA/NYC Nonstop"
2004–10 CSI: NY Stella Bonasera Lead role
2005 Into the Fire Catrina / Sabrina Hampton Movie
2008 CSI: NY Det. Stella Bonasera (voice) Video game

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Production Result
1992 Soap Opera Digest Awards Outstanding Female Newcomer: Daytime Guiding Light Nominated
1994 Daytime Emmy Outstanding Younger Actress in a Drama Series Guiding Light Nominated
1994 Soap Opera Digest Awards Hottest Female Star Guiding Light Nominated
1995 Daytime Emmy Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series Guiding Light Nominated
2000 TV Guide Awards Favorite Actress in a Drama Providence Won
2001 TV Guide Awards Actress of the Year in a Drama Series Providence Nominated

See also[edit]

Famous Greek Americans

References[edit]

  1. ^ Melina Kanakaredes Biography (1967-)
  2. ^ "ACTOR LOSES GUIDING LIGHT, SOAP STAGE GOES DARK FOR FIRESTONE GRAD AFTER 22 YEARS IN ROLE". Akron Beacon Journal. 2009-09-13. Retrieved 2010-02-14. 
  3. ^ Whitfield, Fredricka (2002-10-02). "Interview with Melina Kanakaredes". CNN. Retrieved 2008-07-11. 
  4. ^ a b Profile from "Women in Akron History" from a University of Akron website
  5. ^ Temo's candy is an Easter tradition in Akron, a March 2007 Akron Beacon Journal article via Topix.net
  6. ^ Akron native Melina Kanakaredes leaving 'CSI: NY'
  7. ^ Milliner, Janice (Spring 2007). "At home with: Richard E. Rauh Conservatory & Pittsburgh Musical Theater". Designing Home Lifestyles. Retrieved July 19, 2011.
  8. ^ Past Distinguished Alumni from the Point Park University website
  9. ^ "US: Melina Kanakaredes leaves CSI: NY". The Spy Report (Media Spy). July 13, 2010. Retrieved July 13, 2010. 
  10. ^ Pierce, Scott D. (2003-02-16). "Mega-hit 'Wedding' had inauspicious beginning". Deseret News (Salt Lake City). Retrieved 2008-07-11. 
  11. ^ a b c Kanakaredes savors her married life from USA Today
  12. ^ "Melina Kanakaredes on TV.com, Biography". TV.com. Retrieved September 2, 2010. 
  13. ^ "The Melina Kanakaredes Picture Pages". SuperiorPics.com. Retrieved September 2, 2010. 
  14. ^ Official website for Tria Greek Kuzina

External links[edit]