Nadine Velazquez, ‘My Name Is Earl’

10 Actors to Watch

What makes your show different?

“The idea, the concept of the show. The characters are very quirky and different, yet normal at the same time. It’s funny and, right now, there aren’t many shows that are really funny. I was laughing out loud. The script was so well-written that I could see it as if it were a movie playing in front of me.”

What previous role are you most proud of?

“I haven’t done a lot for me to say, ‘That was a role.’ On a smaller scale, I did an appearance on ‘Entourage’ that I had a lot of fun doing, that I thought I had turned a little part into something that was memorable.”

What shows influenced you in becoming an actor? Why?

” ‘Punky Brewster,’ because I just wanted to be her. And I always wanted to be adopted. ‘Webster’ was a show that I was attracted to. He was also a foster kid. I had this thing with adopted kids. I didn’t want to be in my family, I wanted to see what other families were like.”

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Comedy or drama: Which is harder?

Drama. It requires all those tears that somehow I’m not able to expose in front of people. It’s definitely more demanding. Some people definitely find it easier, but I find that my pain or my character’s pain is too painful to reveal. I definitely can do it, but I find so much more joy in the goofier side of me. I think I spend too much time being dramatic in my own life.”

Whose career would you like to emulate?

“Renee Zellweger. She’s very charismatic and has an ability to engage in the life of the story in a way that I’ve never seen, or that I’ve not seen with current actresses. She’s funny, spunky, spontaneous, truthful, shy and bold. She has it all and I just find myself mesmerized by her.”