Jamie-Lynn Sigler Thought Her “Sopranos” Audition Was for a Show About Singers

On the 'Life Is Short' podcast, Sigler also talked about landing her follow-up role on 'Entourage'

<p>Scott Gries/BRAVO via Getty </p> Jamie-Lynn Sigler

Scott Gries/BRAVO via Getty

Jamie-Lynn Sigler

Twenty-five years ago, The Sopranos redefined the mafia genre — but Jamie-Lynn Sigler didn’t realize, going into the acclaimed series, that she was signing up to play a member of a New Jersey crime family.

On the most recent episode of the podcast Life Is Short with Justin Long, the 43-year-old actress told the hosts that she initially thought her “whirlwind” audition to play Tony Soprano’s teen daughter Meadow was for a show about singers.

“I had never gotten any traction in film or television,” Sigler, who was just a teenager herself at the time, told Long and co-host Christian Long. “I was strictly a musical theater kid. I was just, like, all about Broadway. All I had been doing was theater my whole life, and it’s because of the title, I thought that's what it was about.”

Sigler said she even went in expecting to have to sing. “I’d asked David Chase if he would like a song a capella since there was no accompanist, and he said ‘Not necessary,’ ” she recalled. “But I think that's why he had Meadow sing in [the show]. Like, Meadow, like, you know, would have, like, her solos in the choir.”

<p>Anthony Neste/Hbo/Kobal/Shutterstock </p> Jamie-Lynn Sigler, James Gandolfini, Edie Falco and Robert Iler in 'The Sopranos'

Anthony Neste/Hbo/Kobal/Shutterstock

Jamie-Lynn Sigler, James Gandolfini, Edie Falco and Robert Iler in 'The Sopranos'

Related: The Sopranos Cast: Where Are They Now?

Sigler said she struggled to find roles after The Sopranos ended in 2007, though she went on to play what she called "a heightened version" of herself in the fifth and sixth seasons of Entourage.

"That one ... it was a blessing," she said. "When Sopranos ended, I moved out to L.A. I really had a hard time. People were honest with my reps and being like, 'I can't get past Meadow.' "

"I was like, testing for all these sitcoms and this and that, and they're like, I just can't do it."

She knew cast and crew members of Entourage through their HBO connections, and recalled that series creator Doug Ellin would ask her to guest on the show — a move the network "was not cool with while The Sopranos was on air," she said, adding, "I understood."

Related: Jamie-Lynn Sigler Found Out After James Gandolfini's Death That He'd Secretly Donated to MS Charities

<p>Hbo/Kobal/Shutterstock</p> Jamie-Lynn Sigler in 'The Sopranos'


Jamie-Lynn Sigler in 'The Sopranos'

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Sigler had a chance encounter with Ellin after her work as Meadow wrapped; he sent her a script and a one-episode arc as Jerry Ferrara's character Turtle's love interest turned into a somewhat regular role. (She and Ferrara went on to date for nearly two years, too.)

Calling it an "easy transition out" of The Sopranos, Sigler recalled having "a blast" on the show, which also starred Adrian Grenier, Kevin Connolly, Kevin Dillon, Jeremy Piven and Rex Lee.

"It was a great, wonderful, wonderful job," she added. "I really, really enjoyed my time on that show."

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