Alyssa Milano

Alyssa Jayne Milano (born December 19, 1972) is an American actress and former singer. She is perhaps best known for her roles as Samantha Micelli in the sitcom Who's the Boss?, Phoebe Halliwell on the supernatural series Charmed or via her new female apparel clothing line Touch. Recently, she has appeared in a recurring role on My Name is Earl as Billie Cunningham. She got her start in acting by starring in the Broadway show Annie.

Early life and career

Milano was born in New York City, the daughter of Italian-American parents Lin, a former fashion designer and talent manager, and Thomas M. Milano, a film music editor and a well-known boating enthusiast. She has a younger brother, Cory (born in 1982), who is also an actor, but has more recently started a band, called Chloroform Days, in which he is the lead singer. Milano was born in Brooklyn but grew up in Staten Island, New York and was raised Catholic. She began her career at the age of eight when she won a part in an open audition for a national tour of Annie. She appeared in television commercials and off-Broadway productions. At the age of eleven, she earned her first major role in the TV show Who's the Boss?, alongside Tony Danza, Judith Light, Danny Pintauro and Katherine Helmond. She starred as Samantha Micelli, the daughter of Danza's character, Tony Micelli. When Milano won the role, her family relocated from Staten Island to Hollywood. She produced a teen workout video in 1988 called Teen Steam. In 1985, Milano was in the film Commando as Jenny Matrix who was John Matrix (Arnold Schwarzenegger)'s daughter. A few years later this film was shown in Japan prompting a producer to offer Alyssa a five album record deal.

Later career

At the beginning of her career, Milano was known mainly for her role on Who's the Boss? (1984-1992). She tried to shed her "nice girl" image by appearing in several films targeted at adults, such as Casualties of Love: The Long Island Lolita Story (1992), Embrace of the Vampire (1994), Confessions of a Sorority Girl (1994), Deadly Sins (1995), and Poison Ivy II: Lily (1995), where she starred opposite Johnathon Schaech and Xander Berkeley. She gained more mainstream success in TV as Jennifer Mancini on Melrose Place (1997-1998), Meg Winston in Spin City and most notably as Phoebe Halliwell on Charmed (1998-2006). Both Milano and close friend Holly Marie Combs became producers for Charmed during the show's fifth season. She also played the role of Eva Savelot in MCI's 1-800-COLLECT commercials. In 2007, Milano filmed a pilot for ABC entitled Reinventing the Wheelers. The series was not picked up for the 2007-2008 season, but instead, Milano appeared in ten episodes of the show My Name is Earl. This reunited her with Jaime Pressly who guest starred in the Season 5 premiere of Charmed, A Witch's Tail. She is set to reappear in the fourth season of the Emmy winning show, reprising her role as Billie Cunningham. Not much is known about her storylines.

On stage, she starred in Tender Offer, a one-act play written by Wendy Wasserstein, All Night Long by American playwright John O'Keefe, and the first American musical adaptation of Jane Eyre. She returned to the theater in 1991, when she starred in and produced a Los Angeles production of Butterflies Are Free. Milano also appeared in the Josie music video by Blink-182, and in 2007, Milano began appearing on television again in commercials for Veet and SheerCover.

Milano was part of TBS' special coverage installment Hot Corner for the 2007 Major League Baseball playoffs. She reported at Fenway Park during the ALDS between the Boston Red Sox and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. She also reported at Chase Field during the NLCS between the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies.

Milano was cast in a new comedic television show (Single with Parents) for the 2008-2009 season.

Personal life

Outside of acting, her hobbies include photography, humanitarian work, and spending time with her three dogs and eight horses.

Milano suffers from dyslexia. In an interview in 2004, Milano explained how she deals with the disorder:

"I've stumbled over words while reading from Teleprompters. Sir John Gielgud, whom I worked with on The Canterville Ghost years ago, gave me great advice. When I asked how he memorized his monologues, he said, 'I write them down.' I use that method to this day. It not only familiarizes me with the words, it makes them my own."

Milano is a fan of tattoos, and has eight of them located in various areas of her body, including both wrists, both ankles, shoulder, neck, hip and lower back. Milano is also a fan of the Los Angeles Dodgers. In 2007 she created her own signature "Touch" line of team apparel for female baseball fans, currently available on Major League Baseball's website, along with her own baseball blog.. She also has an interest in the Los Angeles Kings, a National Hockey League team and is involved with a related clothing line. Milano is also a vegetarian and appears in numerous PETA advertising campaigns for vegetarianism. In 2005, she was ranked #5 in the '50 Cutest Child Stars -All Grown Up'.


Milano was recently appointed Founding Ambassador for the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases to which she donated $250,000 of her own money. The Global Network is an alliance formed to advocate and mobilize resources in the fight to control neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Milano will work to raise awareness of NTDs by educating the mainstream media and general public of the plight faced by the one billion people who are afflicted by NTDs, and the importance in controlling and preventing this global health crisis.

Milano is also a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador for the United States. She traveled to India, as well as Angola, to work with UNICEF field officers there. In the fall of 2004, she launched UNICEF's "Trick or Treat" campaign as an official spokesperson. She raised approximately $50,000 for South African women and children with AIDS by selling her own photo work and a school's photo work. Milano is also a strong supporter of PETA and appeared in an advertisement for them wearing only fruit and vegetables, advocating vegetarianism.



Year Title Role Notes
1984 Old Enough Diane
1985 Commando Jenny Matrix Award Nominated performance
1986 The Canterville Ghost Jennifer Canterville TV movie
1988 Crash Course Vanessa Crawford TV movie a.k.a. Driving Academy
Dance 'Til Dawn Shelley Sheridan Award Nominated performance & TV movie
1989 Speed Zone! Lurleen a.k.a. Cannonball Fever
1992 Little Sister Diana
Where the Day Takes You Kimmy
1993 The Webbers Fan TV movie
Conflict of Interest Eve
Casualties of Love: The Long Island Lolita Story Amy Fisher TV movie
Candles in the Dark Sylvia Velliste TV movie
1994 Confessions of a Sorority Girl Rita Summers TV movie
Double Dragon Marian Delario/Power Corps Chief
1995 Deadly Sins Cristina
Embrace of the Vampire Charlotte Wells
The Surrogate Amy Winslow TV movie
1996 Jimmy Zip Short Film
Poison Ivy II: Lily Lily Leonetti
Fear Margo Masse
Glory Daze Chelsea
To Brave Alaska Denise Harris TV movie
Public Enemies Amaryllis
1997 Below Utopia Susanne
Hugo Pool Hugo Dugay
1998 Goldrush: A Real Life Alaskan Adventure Frances Ella 'Fizzy' Fitz TV movie
2001 Lady and the Tramp II: Scamp's Adventure Angel Award Nominated Performance
Diamond Hunters Tracey Van der Byl TV movie
2002 Buying the Cow Amy
Kiss the Bride Amy Kayne
2003 Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star Cyndi
2005 Dinotopia: Quest for the Ruby Sunstone 26 Voice
2007 The Blue Hour Allegra
2008 Wisegal Patty Montanari Lifetime original movie
Pathology Gwen Williamson

TV series

Year(s) Title Role Seasons Notes
1984-92 Who's the Boss? Samantha Micelli 1–8 Won Six Awards for the role of Samantha in the hit TV show
1997-98 Melrose Place Jennifer Mancini 5 & 6 Left after the end of Season 6 - this was an extended season that picked up in the summer of '98.
She never appeared in Season 7.
1998-06 Charmed Phoebe Halliwell 1–8 Was a producer with Holly Marie Combs from the beginning of Season Five.
Also known as the longest running television show with all female leads.
2007-08 My Name is Earl Billie Cunningham 3-4 Appeared in ten episodes in season 3. Milano is set to reprise her role as Billie Cunningham in the fourth season of the series.
2008-?? Single with Parents Louisa "Lou" Picked up by ABC, will be airing in Fall 2008

TV appearances

Title Season Role Episode titles Notes
The Outer Limits 1 Hannah Valesic Caught in the Act Ep. 16
Spin City 2 Meg Winston They Shoot Horses, Don't They? Ep. 11
Spin City 5 Meg Winston Rain on My Charades Ep. 17
Fantasy Island 1 Gina Williams Superfriends Ep. 2
The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius 2 April Gorlock Win, Lose & Kaboom! Voice
Family Guy 3 Herself Mr. Griffin Goes to Washington Ep. 3


Studio albums

Year Information Peak positions
1989 Look In My Heart
  • First Studio Album
  • Released: March 25, 1989
  • Formats: Vinyl, Cassette, CD

1989 Alyssa
  • Second Studio Album
  • Released: October 25, 1989
  • Formats: Vinyl, Cassette, CD

1991 Locked Inside A Dream
  • Third Studio Album
  • Released: May 211991
  • Formats: Cassette, CD

1992 Do You See Me?



Year Information Peak positions
1990 The Best In The World: Non-Stop Special Remix/Alyssa's Singles

1995 The Very Best Of Alyssa Milano
  • Hits Album
  • Released: 1995 (Promo Only)
  • Formats: CD


Year Single Album Peak positions
1989 "What a Feeling" Look in My Heart - - -
"Look In My Heart" - - -
"Straight to the Top" - - -
"I Had a Dream" Alyssa - - -
"Happiness" - - -
1990 "The Best in the World" The Best in the World - - -
"I Love When We're Together"1 Single Only - - -
1991 "New Sensation" Locked Inside a Dream - - -
"Voices That Care" 1 Single Only 11 6 -
1992 "Do You See Me?" Do You See Me? - - -
1993 "No Secret" 2 Locked Inside a Dream - - -


  • 1 Non-album Single.
  • 2 Only released in France.

Other recordings

  • Teen Steam Theme song from Alyssa Milano's Teen Steam Workout Video (1988)

Awards and nominations

Year Title Result Notes
1986 Young Artist Award Won Best Young Supporting Actress in a Television Series (Who's the Boss)
1987 Young Artist Award Nominated Exceptional Performance by a Young Actress Starring in a Feature Film - Comedy or Drama (Commando)
1987 Young Artist Award Won Exceptional Performance by a Young Actress, Starring in a Television, Comedy or Drama Series (Who's the Boss)
1988 Young Artist Award Won Best Young Female Superstar in Television (Who's the Boss)
1988 Kids' Choice Award Won Favorite TV Actress (Who's the Boss)
1989 Young Artist Award Nominated Best Young Actress in a Special, Pilot, Movie of the Week or Mini-Series (Dance til Dawn)
1989 Kids' Choice Award Won Favorite TV Actress (Who's the Boss)
1990 Blimp Award Won Favorite TV Actress (Who's the Boss)
2001 Annie Award Nominated Outstanding Individual Achievement for Voice Acting by a Female Performer in an Animated Feature Production (Lady and the Tramp II)
2005 Blimp Award Nominated Favorite TV Actress (Charmed)
2006 Teen Choice Award Nominated TV - Choice Actress (Charmed)


External links

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