“The White Lotus” breakout Sabrina Impacciatore said that watching the hit Mike White HBO series was just as pleasurable for her as it was for viewers who didn’t spend their spring filming it in Italy.
“These actors are all maestros, Aubrey Plaza, Michael Imperioli … they are great actors,” Impacciatore said Wednesday at TheWrap’s Power Women Summit. “When I watch this show and I see these performances, I feel excited, like you are having sex with the best people on the planet.”
Impacciatore broke out in her role as hotel manager Valentina on “The White Lotus” Season 2, who could be seen reprimanding Lucia and Mia for galavanting across the luxury hotel or sending Rocco to work at the beach club when he got too chatty with Isabella. Though fans have been loving Impacciatore’s role — including that improvised “Peppa Pig” line — she admits that she was “scared” to play such a “bitchy” role.
“Imagine me so scared to play this role and Mike White telling me, ‘You have to be bitchy,’” she said. “So I thought, ‘Wow, they are going to hate me. This is the beginning and the end of my international career — two things at the same time.’”
Despite her hesitations, Impacciatore leaned on White’s guidance, calling him a “genius.”
“When you work with a genius, the good thing is that you can trust him,” she said. “And in fact, I trust him totally and I was very bitchy.”
The once buttoned up Valentina undergoes a complete transformation by the season’s finale after what she calls an “epiphanic” night with Mia.
“She didn’t totally know that she was gay,” Impacciatore told TheWrap in an earlier interview. “She was trying probably to hide to herself that she was gay. She was so focused on her job … she was like a workaholic to me because she didn’t have a private life, and working so much for her was a way to have her life in control.”
“The White Lotus” Season 2 is available on HBO on demand and on HBO Max.