Friday, February 18, 2011

Interview (GH): Vanessa Marcil Giovinazzo Gets Her Man!

Vanessa Marcil Giovinazzo had been AWOL from Port Charles since 2003 — that is, until late summer 2010. At that time, she returned in true “Brenda Barrett” fashion: shrouded in glamour and mystery. Her previous beaus (Jason, Jax and even Dante) were left panting in her wake, but her heart still and always belongs to Sonny Corinthos. Now “General Hospital” is gearing up for the wedding of the decade, as Brenda and Sonny finally make it down the aisle. I spoke with Vanessa recently about her return and about Brenda’s coming nuptials.

Daytime Dial: Ever since you left “GH” in 2003, it seemed that every year there was a new rumor that you were returning to the show. What made you decide that last summer was the time to come back?

Vanessa Marcil-Giovinazzo: Bob (head writer, Robert Guza Jr.) and I have been trying to make it work with my schedule and his stories on the show. We finally figured out a way to make both work. I love these people and these characters.

DD: What were those first few days of being back like?

VMG: Very surreal — and I was quite surprised at how much more they shoot compared with when I was here before. It also felt like the best high-school reunion ever.

DD: Did you prepare to get yourself back in the “Brenda” mind-set by watching old video, reading old articles, etc., or is Brenda so ingrained in you that it was like riding a bike?

VMG: I wanted Brenda to be different and changed after eight years of running from the people she loves — shut down in many ways to show how much she needs these people, her family, to be herself again. I wanted her to only begin to blossom again once she was with Sonny.

DD: Of course, now that you are back, Brenda has a huge secret (baby with Dante). Were you excited when you learned you’d be the catalyst in such an explosive story line for so many people?

VGM: Everything Bob writes excites me.

DD: As Brenda and Sonny’s wedding gets closer, so many things threaten it (and Brenda’s happiness), like: Will the secret of the baby come out? Will the Balkan exact his revenge? Will Carly spill the beans? How will Brenda handle all this?

VMG: Brenda handles threats and danger very well. She’s much more afraid of real intimacy. It’s easier for Brenda to have to walk away from people she loves than it is for her to believe in love, safety and happiness. She’s never had that before.

DD: Are you excited to see/read about “GH” fans’ reactions when all of this craziness does air?

VMG: We stay very isolated from watching anything we do or reading anything about ourselves at my house. I don’t think it’s helpful as an artist. In fact, I think it can be very damaging. We are just so grateful to get to do what we love for a living.

DD: Now that you are back, how has the fan reaction to you been?

VMG: “GH” fans are truly the best in the world. I love talking to them. They are smart and lovely people.

DD: After all this stuff has settled down for Brenda, are you excited to see what else the writers have planned for her, or do you think she deserves a little break?

VMG: Maurice (Benard, “Sonny”) and I are very excited to get to portray real-life relatable issues between a married couple.