They say show business is all about who you know. Word of mouth travels fast, so having a good working relationship with casts, crews, and directors will make or break a new star's career. One such actress who learned this early on is Rosie O'Donnell, who is currently starring in Showtime's new hit show SMILF. Rosie's first movie role was in the iconic baseball classic A League of Their Own, where she shared a ton of scenes with pop star Madonna. The two had a close relationship, which actually helped O'Donnell book her second movie: Sleepless in Seattle. I recently spoke to Rosie ahead of the release of Sleepless in Seattle's 25th anniversary addition, where she revealed how Madge helped her get the supporting role in Nora Ephron's classic romcom.
Well, that's a lesson learned. Never doubt the power of Madonna, because the legendary pop singer has enough connections and fans to help make change happen. For Rosie O'Donnell, it was merely being friends with the Material Girl that helped get her in the door to play Meg Ryan's best friend in Sleepless in Seattle.
Ultimately, Sleepless and A League of Their Own was a killer one two bunch for Rosie O'Donnell, and allowed her to ascend to the TV and movie icon she would eventually become. Sleepless in Seattle is one of the most iconic romantic comedies ever, and still has the ability to trigger feelings of love and nostalgia with its generations of fans. It also made $227 million on a $21 million budget, accruing two Oscar nominations along the way.
Sleepless in Seattle revolves around Meg Ryan's Annie Reed, with Rosie O'Donnell playing her friend and co-worker Becky. As Annie falls in love with Tom Hanks' character by listening to a radio show, Becky is her confidante and wingwoman in her quest for happiness. Rosie got one of the biggest parts in the movie, and rounded out a cast including Victor Garber, Rita Wilson, David Hyde Pierce, and Gaby Hoffman.
The 25th Anniversary Edition of Sleepless in Seattle is available now for home purchase, and will include special features and a new deleted scene. You can catch up on Season 1 of SMILF on Showtime's On Demand services. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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