12/4/1964 (54 years old) Brooklyn, New York, United States
A feisty brunette who has enjoyed a roller-coaster career, Tomei started out on soaps before jumping to prime time as a regular on the sitcom A Different World. Her breakthrough role as a marriage-minded tough cookie in 1992's My Cousin Vinny showcased her comedic talents and Brooklyn accent, and snagged her an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. When a number of her subsequent movies (Untamed Heart, The Perez Family) failed to live up to their promise, Tomei smartly switched her focus to indie films, earning a second Oscar nod for her work in the harrowing 2001 drama In the Bedroom. Supporting roles in mainstream pictures followed (Anger Management, Alfie), as did a handful of plum stage roles, notably her 2003 pairing opposite acting great Al Pacino in Salome on Broadway. She racked up yet another Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress for the 2008 drama The Wrestler, playing a stripper who befriends an aging wrestler who's one of her regular clients. While the role required her to have a number of fake tattoos, Tomei also has a tattoo in real life of an Egyptian symbol on her right foot.