You don't know her name. (And if you did, you wouldn't know how to pronounce it.) But you do know her face. For more than 20 years Siobhan Fallon Hogan has been making you laugh, playing opposite those people with the famous names. She's had stints on Saturday Night Live and Seinfeld, and memorable roles in movies like Men in Black, Baby Mama, Forrest Gump, Holes, and Charlotte's Web.
Her latest movie, which opens this week, is New in Town, a romantic comedy starring Renee Zellweger and Harry Connick Jr. But it was an unexpected name that piqued her interest in joining this particular cast—Jesus.
"I'm always praying for a part that would be something that I could be really proud of, in which I could use the gifts God gave me in a positive way," says Hogan, whose first name is pronounced "Sha-vaun." "So when I read the script and saw that my character mentioned Jesus and it wasn't in a mocking way, I was excited. But I thought surely on the next page or the next page she's going to be the brunt of the joke—like every other Hollywood movie that portrays Christian women it seems like. We're either Tammy Faye Baker or jerks."
But as Hogan read on, she was impressed by the earnest faith of Blanche Gunderson and her community. "I felt like the role was a gift from God," she says. "I said to God, 'You've got to be kidding me. I have got to get this part.'"
As Blanche, Hogan heads up the welcome wagon when Lucy Hill (Zellweger) moves to the small town of New Ulm, Minnesota, on a short-term assignment from the corporate offices in Miami. Lucy's job is to automate and downsize a factory in New Ulm, and she has to go through the local union representative, Ted Mitchell (Connick), to make it happen. Needless to say, things ...1
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I'm Not Tammy Faye!
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