Lorraine Bracco, right, arrives for the 2006 Primetime Emmy Awards. She received four Emmy nominations for her role as Dr. Jennifer Melfi, left, psychiatrist to mobster Tony Sopranos on the HBO series "The Sopranos." The first three nominations were for lead actress; 2007's nomination is for supporting actress.
Lorraine Bracco was an established actress before "The Sopranos." She played Karen Hill, wife of mobster Henry Hill (played by Ray Liotta) in Martin Scorcese's 1990 film, "Goodfellas." Her performance earned her an Academy Award nomination.
Credit: WARNER BROS.
There is no question that the public took much more notice of her when she was cast as the psychiatrist visited by mobster Tony Soprano, played by James Gandolfini, after he suffers a series of anxiety attacks.
The relationship between the two characters had its ups and downs, and its evolution was one of the central developments of the series. Here in a scene in 2001, Tony seems to be comforting Dr. Melfi ...
... but in a scene in 2002, Tony is threatening his psychiatrist ...
... and in 2004, the characters appear to have grown distant.
James Gandolfini and Lorraine Bracco attend "The Sopranos: The Complete Fifth Season" DVD launch party in New York in 2005.
Credit: GETTY IMAGES/Paul Hawthorne
Bracco did not play Dr. Melfi all 12 months in the year. In 2002, she starred in a Broadway version of the movie, "The Graduate," playing sultry Mrs. Robinson and at one point appearing on stage in the nude.
Credit: GETTY IMAGES/Matthew Peyton
Lorraine Bracco with her real daughters, Stella Keitel, left, and Margaux Guerard. In her 2007 memoir, "On The Couch," Bracco details a life that included such struggles as her fight with Stella's father, Harvey Keitel, over custody, and Bracco's triumph over clinical depression.