Lana Parrilla: biography
Lana Parrilla’s path to glory was thorny. She chose the acting profession in memory of her father and managed to become famous only at the age of 35. Fans know her for the brilliant role of the Evil Queen in the TV series Once Upon a Time.
Childhood and youth
The full name of the actress is Lana Maria Parrilla. She was born in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. Her mother grew up in sunny Sicily, and father Sam Parrilla came from Puerto Rico and was a famous baseball player of the early 1970s. He played for the Philadelphia Phillies.
The girl grew up in a quarter that was overcrowded with immigrants from the Caribbean. There was the atmosphere of Latin America, and Lana loved rice and beans, learned to dance salsa. The girl had an overactive imagination, but somehow she and her father came up with an imaginary friend named Popito, who for a long time "participated" with the future actress in all the childish pranks.
The parents broke up when Lana was four years old. At the age of 16, the screen star lost her father. One day Sam got into a car accident, the owners of the cars agreed to meet in a couple of days and solve the issues of damage compensation without the participation of the police. When Parrilla came for the money, a bullet hit him in the chest.
This event was the first impulse for the stellar career. Then Lana decided that she needed to achieve something significant in life in memory of her father. The best option was to become famous. Moreover, she had a relative who worked in the film industry. Lana’s aunt, Candice Azzara, is an actress, who since 1970 has played in American TV series.
After graduation from school, the girl went to Los Angeles to improve the acting skills and became a theater actress.
Parrilla made her television debut at the age of 22 when Lana got the bit part of a waitress in the TV series Grown Ups. The first film with her participation was shown in cinemas in 2000. It was the fantasy film Spiders directed by Gary Jones.
Parrilla’s credentials have only a few feature films, but she was lucky to receive proposals from the creators of series. However, the roles were not very prominent. In 2000, the young woman got her first significant job in the sitcom Spin City. Lana appeared in 21 episodes of the TV series. The television film allowed the actress to meet the famous movie stars. It starred Michael J. Fox, Heather Locklear, Charlie Sheen.
Later, Lana Parrilla’s filmography included the TV series Boomtown, 24, Swingtown. She even starred in two episodes of the cult drama Lost, where Matthew Fox, Evangeline Lilly, Jorge Garcia, and other celebrities played. For her role in the film Boomtown, Lana received the Imagen Award for Best Supporting Actress.
In general, her acting career was full of hope and disappointment. It was challenging to climb the career ladder because directors were not in a hurry to invite her to play in exciting projects. The actress complained that the producers did not see her as a bright character:
"The directors said that I was too light to portray "Latina" and too dark to play other heroines."
The young woman waited for the next role for months, and she even began to lose faith in her abilities and wanted to give up her job. She recalled that during the period of unemployment, she was sitting in a park one day, and asked fate to give a sign - to change the path or wait. Suddenly she saw a bird feather dancing through the air and decided that the higher forces told her to wait:
"I saw a kind of confirmation – "You are where you should be. Just take a deep breath!”
Soon her pace has picked up. In 2010, the actress starred in four series, including Miami Medical, where Parrilla appeared in 13 seasons. A year later, the project Once Upon a Time premiered, giving a woman the opportunity to work for several years and making her famous.
The film became a smash hit immediately after the release, and viewers were amazed at the talented interpretation of classic fairy tales and the characters invented at the Disney studio. The series featured Ginnifer Goodwin, Joshua Dallas, Jennifer Morrison, Robert Carlyle, and other stars.
Lana has two roles in the fantasy series, created by Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz. In the real world the actress appears as Mayor Regina Mills, and in the fairytale portrays the Evil Queen.
The role required a special talent, for example, the ability to change her voice. The woman can do it easily because she has attended the vocal training for ten years. The shooting was difficult because the actress was torn between the characters.
She admits that such a specific role sometimes made her dizzy. The woman laughed and said in an interview that she could even have hallucinations because she played the Queen in front of a green screen without any set. Then designers created fireplace, walls, and corridors using computer graphics.
Lana Parrilla is the Evil Queen only on the set. Her husband Alfredo Di Blasio says that his wife is a kind-hearted person at home. In 2013, the couple announced their engagement, and he made her a marriage proposal when they were in Israel, where the stars of the series Once Upon a Time rested.
Alfredo made his girlfriend a proposal when her colleagues were around. A year later, the couple married. However, they had a secret wedding, and journalists found out about the romantic event only in several months.
The husband is an educated man because he graduated from the King's College, a constituent college of the University of Cambridge, completed a Master's degree in international business. Alfredo owns a consulting company, and he is vice president of Telus telecommunications company.
Lana brings up two sons from a previous marriage of her husband. Her stepson Jack also plays in the television fairy tale. He got the role of the Lost Boy. When she got a job in the series, the star had a bird feather tattooed on the wrist of her left hand as a reminder of that bright moment when a ray of hope appeared in her soul.
Fans find out about the details of the life of their favorite actress on Instagram, where Parrilla often posts photos and videos. Lana also has a cat, Lenny, and a dog of an unknown breed (perhaps a cross between a collie and a sheepdog) named Lola, which she found on the street.
Lana Parrilla now
Now Lana is filming in the final episodes of the series Once Upon a Time. Frustratingly, the seventh season is the last, and the final episodes are scheduled to premiere in May 2018.
In late spring, the actress, together with her colleagues, will wait for fans at the Happy Ending Convention in Paris dedicated to the project.
- 1999 – Grown Ups
- 2000-2001 – Spin City
- 2002-2003 – Boomtown
- 2004 – NYPD Blue
- 2005 – 24
- 2006 – Windfall
- 2006 – Lost
- 2008 – Swingtown
- 2010 – Miami Medical
- 2011 – Chase
- 2011-2018 – Once Upon a Time
- 2000 – Spiders
- 2001 – Replicant
- 2003 – Frozen Stars
- 2005 – One Last Ride
- 2008 – The Double Life of Eleanor Kendall