The Evolution Of Marisa Tomei

The Guru (2002)

From emotional drama to over-the-top ridiculousness, Tomei stars alongside Heather Graham and Jimi Mistry in this daft-hearted comedy.

She’s Lexi, who holds a party that is catered for by Ramu (Mistry). When he gives an impromptu speech inspired by the words of a porn star, Lexi hires Ramu as her sex guru. Filmed in New York and Delhi, The Guru is an odd but entertaining hybrid.

Award Worthy? The dance numbers deserve a bit of attention.

The Simpsons (2003)

Tomei heads up a Notting Hill pastiche in the episode ‘A Star Is Born Again’ during the fourteenth season of The Simpsons.

She plays movie star Sara Cloane, who once dated Rainier Wolfcastle, and falls for everyman Ned Flanders after a visit to the Leftorium. She asks him out on a date, but he won’t have sex with her unless they’re married. Sadly, she leaves.

Award Worthy? The usual top notch stuff from The Simpsons . No awards, though.

Anger Management (2003)

Adam Sandler bags Marisa Tomei as his movie girlfriend in this shouty comedy. He’s got anger management issues; she’s sick of trying to be an understanding girlfriend.

When Sandler’s Dave is on a plane, he meets Buddy Rydell (Jack Nicholson), who rubs him up the wrong way. When he gets to his first anger management class, he discovers that Buddy is the therapy leader...

Award Worthy? For putting up with Adam Sandler? Sadly there’s no award for that... yet.

Alfie (2004)

Remake of the 1966 classic starring Michael Caine. Jude Law takes up the title role this time, playing a charismatic hedonist-seeker who lives for the chase.

Tomei is single mother Julie, who Alfie refers to as his “semi-regular-quasi-sort-of-girlfriend thing”, even though he likes to see numerous other women on the side. But after she discovers he’s cheating on her, Julie chucks him out with the bathwater.

Award Worthy? Nothing that special here, to be honest.

Rescue Me (2006)

Tomei joins a list of top Hollywood stars who have appeared in this TV drama, signing on to four episodes of the show’s third season.

During the same season that Susan Sarandon guest starred, Tomei plays Angie Gavin, a love interest for Tommy (Denis Leary). She’s in episodes five through to eight.

Award Worthy? Of course, Tomei landed recognition for her role at the Gracie Allen Awards.

War, Inc. (2008)

Tomei takes on the role of reporter Natalie Hegalhuzen in this John Cusack co-scripted political satire.

Cusack plays Brand Hauser, a hitman who meets reporter Natalie and goes out for drinks with her. They grow closer when he invites her to a Trade Show, and he lets his hardened exterior begin to crack in her presence. The film wasn’t a hit with critics.

Award Worthy? Not massively, though Hilary Duff got some kudos for her role...

The Wrestler (2008)

High praise again greeted this stellar drama from director Darren Aronofsky. Tomei turns in a staggering performance as an aging stripper who strikes up an understanding and a friendship with a retired wrestler.

Mickey Rourke made his comeback as the wrestler in question. The film earned rave reviews, and Aronofsky considers his recent Black Swan a companion piece to the film.

Award Worthy? Another Oscar nomination, but no win. She was robbed.

Cyrus (2010)

Tomei returns to comedy with this well-received genre-splicer from Jay and Mark Duplass. She’s divorced mother Molly, who finds love again in the form of John Kilpatrick (John C. Reilly).

Annoyingly, her over-protective son Cyrus isn’t happy about the new man in his mother’s life, and isn’t going to make it easy for the lovers to be together. It divided critics, but attained an 80% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes .

Award Worthy? Keeping a straight face around Jonah Hill is award worthy stuff.

The Lincoln Lawyer (2011)

Continuing to mix up her affiliation with both drama and comedy, Tomei returns to the courtroom for this new law drama. Matthew McConaughey plays a lawyer who conducts his business out of the back of his car. It’s out today, 18 March.

Next up for Tomei is Jennifer Connelly crime thriller Salvation Boulevard , Ryan Gosling comedy Crazy, Stupid, Love and George Clooney’s The Ides Of March.

Josh Winning has worn a lot of hats over the years. Contributing Editor at Total Film, writer for SFX, and senior film writer at the Radio Times. Josh has also penned a novel about mysteries and monsters, is the co-host of a movie podcast, and has a library of pretty phenomenal stories from visiting some of the biggest TV and film sets in the world. He would also like you to know that he "lives for cat videos..." Don't we all, Josh. Don't we all.