Vanessa Marcil[2] (/mɑrˈsɛl/ mar-sel;[citation needed] born Sally Vanessa Ortiz; October 15, 1968)[1] is an American actress. She is best known for her roles as Brenda Barrett on General HospitalGina Kincaid on Beverly Hills, 90210 and Sam Marquez on Las Vegas.


  [hide*1 Early life

Early life[edit]Edit

Marcil, the youngest of four children, was born in Indio, California, the daughter of Patricia Marcil, an herbalist, and Peter Ortiz, a contractor and self-made millionaire. Marcil's father is Mexican and her mother is an American of French, Italian, and Portuguese ancestry.[3]


Marcil acted in a number of theatre productions before landing the role of Brenda Barrett on the soap opera General Hospital in 1992. She garnered three Daytime Emmy Award nominations (1997, 1998 and 2003) for her portrayal, winning in 2003 as Outstanding Supporting Actress. In February 1998, she was named Outstanding Lead Actress at the Soap Opera Digest Awards.[4]

In 1994, she was cast in the Prince music video, "The Most Beautiful Girl in the World", and made People Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful list the next year.[5] She made her feature film debut in the 1996 filmThe Rock, in which she appeared opposite Nicolas CageSean Connery and Ed Harris.

After six years on General Hospital, she left the show in 1998, to star in the made-for-television movie To Love, Honor and Deceive, and had a recurring guest role on the police drama High Incident produced by Steven Spielberg. Marcil joined the cast of Beverly Hills, 90210 in November 1998 as Gina Kincaid and remained with the show for one-and-a-half seasons. In 1999, she starred in two independent films:Nice Guys Sleep Alone with Sean O'Bryan and This Space Between Us with Jeremy Sisto.

She returned to General Hospital from 2002 to 2003, as Brenda Barrett. In 2001, she was initially cast to join NYPD Blue's ninth season as a new series regular, Det. Carmine Olivera. However, after her first appearance in "Johnny Got His Gold", the show decided to re-do the role and replaced Marcil with Jacqueline Obradors as Det. Rita Ortiz. Marcil did make one more cameo appearance as Det. Olivera in the 11th season episode "Shear Stupidity".

In 2001, Marcil was awarded the Sojourn Service Award and has supported Sojourn Services for Battered Women and their children by hosting charity events and making appearances on Wheel of Fortune, playing for funds for the organization. Through her fundraising efforts, she hopes to increase awareness of domestic violence and inspire battered women to take control of their lives.

Marcil starred in the NBC television series Las Vegas as Samantha Jane "Sam" Marquez. She has been featured in several Men's magazines, including StuffFHM, and Maxim. She was named No. 19 onMaxim's Hot 100 of 2005 list and was featured on the cover of the issue that included the list, as well as No. 92 in the 2006 FHM Hot 100 list.[6]

In fall of 2008, Marcil guest starred on Lipstick Jungle, playing Shane's new talent manager. As of November 2008, she hosts and is the head judge of Lifetime's reality television show, Blush: The Search For the Next Great Makeup Artist.

On August 11, 2010, she returned to the role of Brenda Barrett on General Hospital in a full-time contract role.[7] Marcil's return was much publicized due to the popularity of her character and 7-year absence from the show. After her one-year contract was up, she decided not to renew with the show. However, Marcil left the door open for a return in the future.

On March 5, 2013, the announcement was made that Marcil would return to General Hospital for a short visit in honor of the show's 50th anniversary. She made her on-screen return as Brenda on April 2, 2013.

Personal life[edit]Edit

Marcil was married to actor Corey Feldman from 1989 to 1993,[8][9] although she has at times denied this fact. For example, in the June 2005 issue of Maxim, Marcil was quoted as saying, "I never married Corey. He's just a kid I did drugs with when I was a teenager."[10] Nevada marriage records, however, show Feldman and Marcil were married in August 1989, with Marcil using her birth name on the marriage license.[11] Both Marcil and Feldman have battled substance addiction.[12][13]

Marcil dated former Beverly Hills, 90210 castmate Brian Austin Green from 1999 until early 2003. Marcil and Green have one son together, born in 2002.[14]

Marcil married actor Carmine Giovinazzo on July 11, 2010 in a private ceremony in New York City.[15] In June 2011 the couple announced they were expecting their first child together,[16] however, Marcil suffered a miscarriage, her second that year.[17] Marcil filed for divorce in August 2012 on the basis of irreconcilable differences.[18] The divorce was final in March 2013.[19]


List of film credits
Year Title Role Notes
1996 The Rock Carla Pestalozzi
1997 976-WISH Danielle
1999 Nice Guys Sleep Alone Erin
2000 This Space Between Us Maggie Harty
2002 Storm Watch Tess Woodward Alternative titles: Virtual Storm

Code Hunter

2010 The Bannen Way Madison Webseries
List of television credits
Year Title Role Notes
  • 2002–2003
  • 2010–2011
  • 2013
General Hospital Brenda Barrett Main role from: September 18, 1992 – September 11, 1998

Main role from: September 4, 2002 – February 19, 2003 Main role from: August 11, 2010 – July 21, 2011 Guest role from: April 2, 2013 – April 23, 2013

1996 To Love, Honor and Deceive Sydney Carpenter TV movie, aka The Protected Wife
1997 High Incident Kerry Andrews "Hot Wire" and "Remote Control"
1998–2000 Beverly Hills, 90210 Gina Kincaid 37 episodes
2001 Spin City Crazy Kara "A Shot in the Dark: Part 2"


NYPD Blue Detective Carmen Olivera "Johnny Got His Gold"

"Shear Stupidity"

2003–2008 Las Vegas Sam Marquez 106 episodes


Crossing Jordan Sam Marquez "What Happens in Vegas Dies in Boston"

"Luck Be a Lady"

2008 Lipstick Jungle Josie Scotto 3 episodes
2009 The Nanny Express Kate Hewitt Hallmark channel movie
2009 Without a Trace Kim Marcus 3 episodes
2009 One Hot Summer Margarita Silva Santos Television movie
2012 Hawaii Five-0 Dr. Olivia Victor TV series
2014 Stranded in Paradise Tess Nelson Hallmark channel movie

Awards and nominations[edit]Edit

Awards and nominations
Year Award Result Category Title of work
1994 Soap Opera Digest Awards Nominated Outstanding Female Newcomer General Hospital
1995 Soap Opera Digest Awards Nominated Hottest Soap Couple (shared with Maurice Benard) General Hospital
1997 Daytime Emmy Award Nominated Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series General Hospital
1997 Soap Opera Digest Awards Won Hottest Female Star General Hospital
1998 Daytime Emmy Award Nominated Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series General Hospital
1998 Soap Opera Digest Awards Won Outstanding Lead Actress General Hospital
2003 Daytime Emmy Award Won Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series General Hospital
2003 Soap Opera Digest Awards Won Favorite Return General Hospital
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