You could say she's arguably the soap world's most popular female star - but there's really no argument about it. Nobody stirs up a fan fuss quite like Vanessa Marcil Giovinazzo, who returns to General Hospital Aug. 11 as drama queen Brenda Barrett. The actress, who recently wed CSI: NY regular Carmine Giovinazzo, hasn't been seen on GH since 2003 when her character fled Port Charles after being dumped at the altar. She'll be fleeing right back: Brenda is now a hotshot international supermodel with a dangerous secret and she needs protection from her former love, mob don Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard). The Emmy winner has kept busy since her GH days - five seasons as the yummy casino host Sam on Las Vegas and recurring roles on Without a Trace and Lipstick Jungle - and she's mom to 8-year-old Kassius, her son from a relationship with actor Brian Austin Green. Yet, through much of this time, she never stopped negotiating a GH return. Marcil Giovinazzo opened up to TV Guide Magazine on a number of topics: her fears and insecurities, why she nixed coming back to GH with James Franco and the family health crisis that made her rethink her priorities and get back to daytime.
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