In Hollywood, plenty of actors get their start on popular soap operas. The medium serves as a training ground for many performers and teaches them how to memorize and perform scripts with a rapid-fire turnaround time. Because the television shows move so quickly, soaps can help actors learn agility. Furthermore, being in soap opera can also provide a steady paycheck. Eva Longoria is amongst the many actors who got their start on a soap. For years, Longoria starred on the wildly popular show The Young and the Restless. However, she admits that she didn’t want anyone to know about her role.
Eva Longoria got her first big break on ‘The Young and the Restless’
Longoria is best known for her role as Gabrielle Solis on Desperate Housewives. But a year before she took on the role of the suburban mom, she was starring in The Young and the Restless. From 2001 to 2003, Longoria was a regular on the long-running soap opera. Though the actor had previously starred in one episode of Beverly Hills, 90210, and one episode of General Hospital, playing Isabella Braña was her first big TV break. In fact, Longoria starred in a whopping 148 episodes of the show throughout her tenure on The Young and the Restless.
Why didn’t the actor want anyone to know she was on the soap opera?
But Longoria was pretty hush-hush about the fact that she was on The Young and the Restless. In fact, she admits that she wasn’t keen on telling anyone that she starred in the show. At the time, Longoria was also working as a headhunter at a temp agency. Because she was great at her headhunting job, she wasn’t willing to let it go even after she booked her role on a soap opera. According to Longoria, playing Isabella didn’t pay enough for her to let go of her other day job, so she continued to do her job from her dressing room.
For Longoria, keeping her day job meant that she had to keep her role on The Young and the Restless a secret. In an interview with Who’s Talking To Chris Wallace, the Over Her Dead Body alum explained her reasoning behind this choice. “I would hide the fact that I was on The Young and the Restless to my clients because they didn’t want a dumb actress handling their accounts,” she explained. “And one time, one of my clients was like, ‘You look like a girl that I’ve seen on a soap opera.’ And I go, ‘No, that’s not — I don’t know who that is.’ I was like the opposite of a publicist’s dream. I was like, ‘Don’t tell anybody I’m on that show!’ Because I was still, you know, making more money on my day job.”
Longoria gave up her headhunting job for ‘Desperate Housewives’
Longoria managed to keep her role on The Young and the Restless under wraps. However, it wasn’t too long after that she had to give up her day job for good. After she booked Desperate Housewives, there was simply no way to hide that she was an actor. The show made her a household name and eventually earned her a Golden Globe award. So it seems that the actor’s days of being a headhunter are long behind her.