Marisa Tomei

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Marisa Tomei
Marisa Tomei TIFF 2012.jpg
Tomei at the Inescapable premiere, 2012
Born(1964-12-04) December 4, 1964 (age 49)
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
ResidenceGreenwich Village, New York
OccupationActress
Years active1984–present
Partner(s)Logan Marshall Green (2008–2013)
 
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Marisa Tomei
Marisa Tomei TIFF 2012.jpg
Tomei at the Inescapable premiere, 2012
Born(1964-12-04) December 4, 1964 (age 49)
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
ResidenceGreenwich Village, New York
OccupationActress
Years active1984–present
Partner(s)Logan Marshall Green (2008–2013)

Marisa Tomei (/məˈrɪsə tˈm/; born December 4, 1964) is an American stage, film, and television actress. Following her work on As The World Turns, Tomei came to prominence as a supporting cast member on The Cosby Show spinoff A Different World in 1987. After appearing in a few films, her breakthrough came in 1992 with the comedy My Cousin Vinny, for which she won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

Appearing in many films over the past fifteen years, her most commercially successful films to date are What Women Want (2000), Anger Management (2003), and Wild Hogs (2007).[1] She received critical acclaim for her performances in Unhook the Stars (1996), Slums of Beverly Hills (1998), and Before the Devil Knows You're Dead (2007) and received Academy Award nominations for her performances in In the Bedroom (2001) and The Wrestler (2008).[2]

Life and career[edit]

1964–83: Early life and career beginnings[edit]

Tomei was born in Brooklyn, New York, the daughter of Patricia Adelaide "Addie" Tomei (née Bianchi), an English teacher, and Garrett A. Tomei, a trial lawyer.[3][4] She has a younger brother, actor Adam Tomei, and was partly raised by her paternal grandparents, Rita and Romeo Tomei.[5] Both of Tomei's parents are of Italian descent. Her maternal grandmother is from Sicily, Tomei's maternal grandfather is from Tuscany, and her father is also of Sicilian descent.[6][7] Tomei grew up in the Midwood neighborhood of Brooklyn.[8] While there, she became captivated by the Broadway shows her theater-loving parents took her to and drawn to acting as a career. At Andries Hudde Junior High School, she played the part of Hedy LaRue in a school production of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. After graduating from Edward R. Murrow High School in 1982, she attended Boston University for a year.[5]

1984–2002: Breakthrough and critical success[edit]

Tomei followed up As the World Turns in 1986 with a role on the sitcom A Different World as Maggie Lauten during the first season. Her film debut was a minor role in the 1984 comedy film The Flamingo Kid, with Matt Dillon. Following several small films, her breakthrough comedic performance came in the 1992 film My Cousin Vinny,[9] for which she received critical praise. Critic Vincent Canby wrote, "Ms. Tomei gives every indication of being a fine comedian, whether towering over Mr. Pesci and trying to look small, or arguing about a leaky faucet in terms that demonstrate her knowledge of plumbing. Mona Lisa is also a first-rate auto mechanic, which comes in handy in the untying of the knotted story."[10] For her performance, Tomei was named Best Supporting Actress at the 1993 Academy Awards, prevailing over Miranda Richardson, Joan Plowright, Vanessa Redgrave and Judy Davis. American film critic Rex Reed created controversy (and a minor Hollywood myth)[11][12][13] when he suggested that Jack Palance had announced the wrong name after opening the envelope.[14][15] While this allegation was repeatedly disproved[16][17] – even the Academy officially denied it[18] – Tomei called the story "extremely hurtful." A Price Waterhouse accountant explained that if such an event had occurred, "we have an agreement with the Academy that one of us would step on stage, introduce ourselves, and say the presenter misspoke."[19]

After her Oscar win, Tomei appeared as silent film star Mabel Normand in the film Chaplin, with her then-boyfriend Robert Downey Jr. playing the title character. The following year she starred in the romantic drama Untamed Heart with Christian Slater, for which they won the MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss. Tomei had won the previous year for Best Breakthrough Performance for My Cousin Vinny. The following year Tomei appeared alongside Downey again in the romantic comedy Only You. She then appeared in Nick Cassavetes's Unhook the Stars opposite Gena Rowlands. Of Tomei's performance, The New York Times wrote, "Ms. Tomei is equally fine as Mildred's younger, hot-tempered neighbor, whose raw working-class feistiness and bluntly profane vocabulary initially repel the genteel older woman."[20] She received her first Screen Actor's Guild Award nomination for Outstanding Female Supporting Actor for her performance. In 1998, she received an American Comedy Award nomination for Funniest Supporting Actress for Tamara Jenkins's cult film Slums of Beverly Hills, in which she appeared alongside Natasha Lyonne and Alan Arkin. The independent film was well received by critics and the public.[21] The New York Times writes, "Jenkins makes the most of an especially ingratiating cast, with Ms. Tomei very charming and funny as Rita"[22] while another critic states Tomei is "spunky and sexy, . . . more subdued than she usually is."[23] Tomei spent several years away from high-profile roles and major motion pictures in the late 1990s, before rising again to prominence in the early 2000s.[24] Tomei appeared in the 2000 film What Women Want with Mel Gibson and Helen Hunt, which was a commercial success, and had a supporting role in the romantic comedy Someone Like You with Hugh Jackman and Ashley Judd.

In 2001, Tomei appeared in Todd Field's Best Picture nominee In the Bedroom opposite Sissy Spacek and Tom Wilkinson, earning several awards including a ShoWest Award for Best Supporting Actress in 2002. Variety wrote, "Tomei is winning in what is surely her most naturalistic and unaffected performance,"[25] while The New York Times writer Stephen Holden exclaimed, "Ms. Tomei's ruined, sorrowful Natalie is easily her finest screen role."[26] In the Bedroom earned Tomei a second Academy Award nomination and her first Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Tomei also shared a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Cast. In 2002 she appeared in the Bollywood-inspired film The Guru and voiced the role of Bree Blackburn, the main antagonist in the animated feature film The Wild Thornberrys Movie.

During the 1990s, Tomei made several television appearances. In 1995, she made a guest appearance on the sitcom Seinfeld, playing herself in the two-part episode "The Cadillac." In the episode, George Constanza attempts to get a date with her through a friend of Elaine Benes. She also made an appearance on The Simpsons as movie star Sara Sloane, who falls in love with Ned Flanders. Former Saturday Night Live cast member Jay Mohr wrote in his book Gasping for Airtime that, as guest host in October 1994, Tomei insisted that a proposed sketch, "Good Morning Brooklyn," not be used because she did not like the idea of being stereotyped; that stand displeased the writers and performers, given the show's penchant for satirizing celebrities.[27] Tomei did however, parody her role from My Cousin Vinny, which had considerable Brooklyn influence, in a skit (out of several recurring) spoofing the 1995 O.J. Simpson murder trial.

2003–present[edit]

Tomei at the premiere for the film War, Inc., April 2008

In 2003, Tomei appeared in one of her biggest commercial hits, Anger Management. The following year, she appeared in the film Alfie based on the 1966 British film of the same name, opposite Jude Law. In 2005, she was featured in an ad campaign for Hanes with the slogan "Look who we've got our Hanes on now", featuring various other celebrities including Michael Jordan, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Damon Wayans, Matthew Perry and, on Spanish-language advertising, Aracely Arámbula and Pablo Montero. In 2006, Tomei had a recurring role on Rescue Me, playing Johnny Gavin's ex-wife Angie. She won a Gracie Allen Award for Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her work in the four episodes she appeared in. The following year she appeared in the comedy Wild Hogs alongside John Travolta, Tim Allen, William H. Macy and Martin Lawrence. The film was the 13th highest-grossing movie of 2007 ($168,273,550 domestic box office). She also starred in the Sidney Lumet-directed Before the Devil Knows You're Dead opposite co-stars Philip Seymour Hoffman and Ethan Hawke. The film was released to critical acclaim.

In 2008, Tomei played Cassidy/Pam, a struggling stripper, in the Darren Aronofsky film The Wrestler opposite Mickey Rourke. She appeared in several nude dance numbers in the film. On working with Tomei, Aronofsky said, "This role shows how courageous and brave Marisa is. And ultimately she's really sexy. We knew nudity was a big part of the picture, and she wanted to be that exposed and vulnerable."[28] Numerous critics heralded this performance as a standout in her career. The Hollywood Reporter wrote, "Tomei delivers one of her most arresting performances, again without any trace of vanity."[29] Ty Burr of The Boston Globe wrote, "Tomei gives a brave and scrupulously honest performance, one that's most naked when Pam has her clothes on."[30] Variety exclaimed, "Tomei is in top, emotionally forthright form as she charts a life passage similar to Ram's."[31] For her performance she was nominated for her first BAFTA, second Golden Globe and third Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

In 2009, Tomei recorded the role of Mary Magdalene in Thomas Nelson's audio Bible production The Word of Promise.[32]

Tomei was No. 18 on the 2009 FHM list of "100 Sexiest Females in the world".[33] The following year she appeared in two films: a comedy-drama, Cyrus and a comedy, Grown Ups.[citation needed] Tomei hosted the 2011 Scientific and Technical Awards, which was followed by an appearance at the 83rd Academy Awards.[34] She starred alongside Matthew McConaughey and Ryan Phillippe in the mystery suspense film The Lincoln Lawyer. She also appeared with Jennifer Connelly, Pierce Brosnan and Greg Kinnear in Salvation Boulevard, which premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. Tomei's other 2011 films included Crazy, Stupid, Love., with Steve Carell, Julianne Moore, Ryan Gosling, and Emma Stone, and the George Clooney film The Ides of March, with Clooney, Ryan Gosling, and Paul Giamatti. She is in talks to star alongside Sarah Jessica Parker in the indie comedy Married and Cheating.[35] In an interview, Lady Gaga stated that she would want Tomei to portray her in a film about the singer. Tomei responded, "I was thrilled when I heard. I love her. I love her music. And she's a smart businesswoman. So I was so touched, really. I think it's incredible that she likes my work and that she'd think of me."[36]

Tomei was featured in the second episode of the third season of NBC's Who Do You Think You Are?, on February 10, 2012. In the episode, she traveled to the Tuscany region of Italy and the island of Elba (part of Tuscany) to uncover the truth about the 100-year-old murder of her great-grandfather, Francesco Leopoldo Bianchi, on her mother's side of the family.[37]

Filmography[edit]

Film
YearTitleRoleNotes
1984Flamingo Kid, TheThe Flamingo KidMandy
1984Toxic Avenger, TheThe Toxic AvengerHealth Club GirlUncredited[38]
1986Playing for KeepsTracy
1991OscarLisa Provolone
1991ZandaleeRemy
1992My Cousin VinnyMona Lisa VitoAcademy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Most Promising Actress
MTV Movie Award for Best Breakthrough Performance
Nominated – Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
1992EquinoxRosie Rivers
1992ChaplinMabel NormandChicago Film Critics Association Award for Most Promising Actress
1993Untamed HeartCarolineMTV Movie Award for Best Kiss (shared with Christian Slater)
1994Only YouFaith Corvatch
1994Paper, TheThe PaperMartha Hacket
1995Perez Family, TheThe Perez FamilyDorita Evita Perez
1995Four RoomsMargaret
1996Unhook the StarsMonica WarrenNominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
1997Brother's Kiss, AA Brother's KissMissy
1997Welcome to SarajevoNina
1998Slums of Beverly HillsRita AbromowitzNominated – American Comedy Awards for Funniest Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
Nominated – Teen Choice Award – Film – Funniest Scene (shared with Natasha Lyonne)
2000Happy AccidentsRuby Weaver
2000Watcher, TheThe WatcherDr. Polly Beilman
2000What Women WantLolaNominated – Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Nominated – Blockbuster Entertainment Awards – Favorite Supporting Actress – Comedy/Romance
2000King of the JungleDet. Costello
2000Dirk and BettyParis
2001In the BedroomNatalie StroutDallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Southeastern Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Chlotrudis Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress - Motion Picture
Nominated – Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress - Motion Picture Drama
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2001Someone Like YouLiz
2002Wild Thornberrys Movie, TheThe Wild Thornberrys MovieBree Blackburnvoice
2002Just a KissPaula
2002Guru, TheThe GuruLexi
2003Anger ManagementLinda
2004AlfieJulie
2005LoverboySybil
2005Marilyn Hotchkiss' Ballroom Dancing and Charm SchoolMeredith Morrison
2005FactotumLaura
2006DanikaDanika
2007Grace Is GoneWoman at Pool
2007Wild HogsMaggie
2007Before the Devil Knows You're DeadGina HansonGotham Award for Best Cast
Nominated – Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Female
2007Rich Inner Life of Penelope Cloud, TheThe Rich Inner Life of Penelope CloudPenelope CloudTV film
2008War, Inc.Natalie Hegalhuzen
2008Wrestler, TheThe WrestlerCassidy/PamCentral Ohio Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
International Cinephile Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress (3nd place)
Detroit Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Florida Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress
Hollywood Film Festival Award for Supporting Actress of the Year
Las Vegas Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Oklahoma Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress
Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
San Francisco Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Nominated – Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress - Motion Picture
Nominated – Houston Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Vancouver Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress
2010CyrusMollyNominated – Satellite Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
2010Grown UpsSpectatorCameo
2011Lincoln Lawyer, TheThe Lincoln LawyerMargaret McPherson
2011Salvation BoulevardHoney Foster
2011Crazy, Stupid, Love.Kate
2011Ides of March, TheThe Ides of MarchIda Horowicz
2012InescapableFatima
2012Parental GuidanceAlice
2014Love Is Strange
TBAWhy Now?!In post-production
TBAUntitled Marc Lawrence filmFilming
Television
YearTitleRoleNotes
1984As the World TurnsMarcy Thompson2 episodes
1987ABC Afterschool SpecialNoelle CrandallEpisode: "Supermom's Daughter"
1987Leg WorkDonna RicciEpisode: "Pilot"
1987Different World, AA Different WorldMaggie Lauten21 episodes
1996SeinfeldHerselfEpisode: "The Cadillac"
1998Since You've Been GoneToriUncredited
1998Only LoveElvie
1998My Own CountryMattie VinesMovie
1998Since You've Been GoneToriUncredited
1998Only LoveElvie
2003Simpsons, TheThe SimpsonsSara Sloane (voice)Episode: "A Star Is Born Again"
2006Rescue MeAngie Gavin4 episodes
Gracie Allen Awards – Outstanding Supporting Actress – Drama Series
Video
YearTitleRoleNotes
2010Core and CurvesHerselfExercise video

Stage work[edit]

Tomei has also done substantial work in the theatre.

Academy Award win and nominations[edit]

YearAwardFilmResult
1992Actress in a Supporting RoleMy Cousin VinnyWon
2001Actress in a Supporting RoleIn The BedroomNominated
2008Actress in a Supporting RoleThe WrestlerNominated

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Marisa Tomei". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-02-04. 
  2. ^ Rochlin, Margy (1997-02-02). "Vinny's Girlfriend, Climbing Back After Success". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-10-18. 
  3. ^ "Marisa Tomei Biography.". Tiscali.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-02-04. 
  4. ^ Stated on Who Do You Think You Are?, February 10, 2012
  5. ^ a b "Maris Tomei Biography. Yahoo! Movies". Yahoo!. 1964-12-04. Retrieved 2011-02-04. 
  6. ^ Euvino, Gabrielle. The Complete Idiot's Guide to Italian History and Culture. Alpha Books, 2002. ISBN 0-02-864234-1.
  7. ^ "Film professor researches how female stardom links to American views on immigration and ethnicity". University of North Texas. October 25, 2001.
  8. ^ Collins, Glenn. "Actress's Challenge in Change of Pace and Diction", The New York Times, August 10, 1992. Retrieved October 23, 2007.
  9. ^ "UP AND COMING: Marisa Tomei; She's Straight Out of Brooklyn". The New York Times. 1992-03-22. Retrieved 2010-05-29. 
  10. ^ Canby, Vincent (March 13, 1992). "My Cousin Vinny (1992) Review". The New York Times. Retrieved 2011-06-02. 
  11. ^ Roger Ebert Movie Answer Man : the questions that will not die, August 27, 2000
  12. ^ Diane Negra, Off-white Hollywood: American culture and ethnic female stardom Routledge, 2001, ISBN 0-415-21678-8, p. 160
  13. ^ Richard Roeper Urban Legends: The Truth Behind All Those Deliciously Entertaining Myths That Are Absolutely, Positively, 100% Not True, Career Press, 2000,ISBN 1-56414-418-6, p. 127
  14. ^ Truth and rumors: the reality behind TV's most famous myths. Google. December 2007. ISBN 978-0-275-99247-7. Retrieved 2010-05-29. 
  15. ^ Roger Ebert, Movie Answer Man, June 15, 1997
  16. ^ "Marisa Tomei Awarded Oscar by Mistake?". snopes.com. Retrieved 2010-07-31. 
  17. ^ "Marisa Tomei on 'The Wrestler' and that weird, pesky rumor that she didn't really win the Oscar for 'Vinny'". Los Angeles Times. 2008-12-15. Retrieved 2010-05-29. 
  18. ^ Roger Ebert, Movie Answer Man
  19. ^ Young, Josh (March 6, 2002). "Return Tomei". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2011-06-02. 
  20. ^ Holden, Stephen The New York Times November 1, 1996 Unhook the Stars (1996) Retrieved February 2, 2011.
  21. ^ Rotten Tomatoes Slums of Beverly Hills review
  22. ^ Maslin, Janet (August 14, 1998). "The Slums of Beverly Hills (1998)". The New York Times. Retrieved 2011-03-13. 
  23. ^ Levy, Emanuel (May 24, 1998). "Slums of Beverly Hills". Variety. Retrieved 2011-03-13. 
  24. ^ Richard Schickel, The Appeal of Her Zeal, Time, May 18, 2002
  25. ^ McCarthy, Todd (January 22, 2001). "In the Bedroom". Variety. Retrieved 2011-06-02. 
  26. ^ Holden, Stephen (November 23, 2001). "In the Bedroom (2001)". The New York Times. Retrieved 2001-11-23. 
  27. ^ Mohr, Jay (2004-06-09). Gasping For Airtime: Two Years In the Trenches of Saturday Night Live. Hyperion. ISBN 1-4013-0006-5. 
  28. ^ Freydkin, Donna (2008-12-21). "Marisa Tomei: A no-holds-barred acting job in 'Wrestler'". USA Today. Retrieved 2011-03-17. 
  29. ^ Farber, Stephen (2008-09-05). "Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2011-03-17. 
  30. ^ Burr, Ty The Boston Globe December 25, 2008 The Wrestler film review Retrieved February 1, 2011.
  31. ^ McCarthy, Todd September 5, 2008 Variety The Wrestler Retrieved February 1, 2010.
  32. ^ "BELIEFS : Stars lined up for elaborate audio Bible : Michael York, Jason Alexander and many others gave voice to a 79-CD reading of Old and New Testaments". 
  33. ^ "FMH 100 Sexiest 2009." FHM magazine. April 2009.
  34. ^ Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Press Release February 12, 2011 Marisa Tomei to Host Academy's Sci-Tech Awards Retrieved February 5, 2011.
  35. ^ "Marisa Tomei and Sarah Jessica Parker Are 'Married and Cheating'". First Showing. 2011-03-13. Retrieved 2011-03-17. 
  36. ^ "There's no questioning Tomei's acting range". The Charlotte Observer. 2011-03-17. Retrieved 2011-03-17. 
  37. ^ "First look at Marisa Tomei on NBC’s Who Do You Think You Are(VIDEO)". Unreality TV. February 6, 2012. Retrieved February 6, 2012. 
  38. ^ "(official studio site)". ToxicAvenger. Retrieved 2011-02-04. 

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