When Debi Mazar walks into Angelini Osteria restaurant in Los Angeles, it’s no surprise that heads turn. The tough yet feminine New York-born actress has had a long career playing roles that leave a lasting impression. Her debut performance as Henry Hill’s coke-snorting mistress in Martin Scorsese’s gangster epic Goodfellas launched a career of daring parts. And it was apropos that she was cast as one of the only women on Entourage, a show with more testosterone than a UFC title fight. It’s been a year’s hiatus since the most recent episode of the show; the boys were last seen at the Cannes Film Festival enjoying tres success with Vince’s latest film Medellin. Where is the show headed Season Five (debuting September 7 on HBO)? Mazar remains tight-lipped, but does offer, “They’re bringing it back to the grass roots of the early seasons of Entourage, where it was really about the guys and their relationships between each other.” As far as Mazar’s character Shauna — Vince’s sassy and sophisticated publicist — she says, “Shauna is as bitchy and strong as ever.”
Off-screen, the sexy actress plays her favorite role of all—mother to her two daughters (to quote Ari Gold from Season 2, “Got Milf?”). Mazar has even brought her creative talents to the Internet, starrin alongside her Italian-born husband, Gabriele Corcos, in a self-produced online cooking show called Under The Tuscan Gun. Interestingly, the weekly show is filmed right in their very own kitchen. When I tell Mazar that the chemistry between her and her husband on the cooking show reminds me of Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball, she quickly adds, “My husband is a conga player.”
I sat down and spoke with Mazar about Entourage, Italian cooking, her thoughts on relocating abroad to Florence, the possibility of romance between Shauna and Johnny Drama, and more.
Where is Shauna headed in this upcoming season of Entourage?
She comes back as the same tough professional publicist/den mother to the boys. She’s also Johnny Drama’s publicist this season, which has been a lot of fun. I’m also back to my pre-baby body, so I was able to get into fabulous wardrobe again. It’s always fun to be an actress working in LA, on location, on a hot show, wearing really fabulous things that I personally could never afford.
Your character, like Ari, has a hard edge. Will we see a softer side to Shauna this year?
No. As a matter of fact, every time I try to humanize Shauna and apologize for something that the character says or does that may have caused a problem, Doug Ellin tells me she’s strong and not to apologize. I think the only soft side she’s displayed on the show was when she was pregnant.
Motherhood hasn’t tamed Shauna even the slightest bit?
No, not at all. If anything motherhood has made her more diligent. She’s also a little wiser, more patient and worldly. However, nothing has changed. She’s back to work looking as good as ever, and there’s never any mention of her personal life at all.
I have always wondered who’s the father of Shauna’s child? Does she have a baby mama?
I don’t know. I thought that Shauna was a lesbian when we first started because I really had no backstory. Of course being an actor I wanted to create one, but sometimes less is more. And the show is not about Shauna. Entourage is a show about five guys in a half hour. I accepted that a long time ago. It’s all up to Doug Ellin and the writers.
You were a longtime member of Madonna’s entourage. Do the writers ever pick your brain for stories?
No, because I was never a member of Madonna’s entourage. Madonna and I are really old friends and remain really old friends. I have never had an entourage or even been a part of one. I was always a loner. I left home at 15 and got a New York City apartment. I worked as a makeup artist from the age of 16 until I was 22 while I was going to acting school. I had many friends who hung around in entourages. But I don’t like to hang around with “yes” people, and I’m not into being around to just decorate the scenery. I like real conversations and real moments. Now, my family is my entourage.
How accurate do you think Entourage is in depicting Hollywood?
I think Entourage is very accurate. The perks that some of the big actors get in real life are pretty outrageous, so I don’t think the show is far from the truth. All of the relationships are written from experiences, and I think people in the business can relate to certain situations and find them funny. But I don’t know about five guys of their age hanging out constantly. I think the idea of that would be kind of pathetic. Just like on Sex and the City, when the girls are always hanging out, I ask myself, “Where do these women find all of this time?”
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