Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Joe Manganiello

Vampire and werewolf drama "True Blood," HBO's Golden Globe- and Emmy award-winning series, has added some new blood to its cast: Mount Lebanon native—and diehard Pittsburgh Steelers fan—Joe Manganiello, who admits to bleeding a bit of black and gold.



Photo by Rodolfo Martinez

He’s tall (6 feet 5 inches), dark (his jet-black locks have a touch of salt and pepper perfectly accentuating his temple region) and handsome (… and chiseled …and fit). Joe Manganiello also is smart (he has a bachelor’s from Carnegie Mellon University), and he gives back to the community (he supports Until There’s a Cure, a national organization dedicated to eradicating HIV/AIDS by raising awareness and funds through his public service announcements). Add that all up, and you’ll have no problem figuring out why this man is such a hot commodity.

Executives in Hollywood certainly believe in his marketability, and “True Blood” creator and producer Alan Ball has signed on Manganiello to play werewolf Alcide Herveaux on HBO’s hit drama series. So now we can include “owwwwlll” with all the other plus factors this Mount Lebanon native has going for him.

“True Blood,” based on The Southern Vampire Mysteries, a series of novels by Charlaine Harris, takes place in Bon Temps, a fictional small town in Louisiana. The plot centers on Sookie Stackhouse (played by Anna Paquin), a telepathic waitress at a local bar caught in a love triangle involving two vampires, played by Stephen Moyer and Alex Skarsgard, both of whom are vying for Sookie’s favor.

For the third season, Joe Manganiello enters the picture as Alcide, who is now caught in a “love square”—as Joe refers to it—with Sookie and the vampires.Joe Manganiello and Anna Paquin on the set of "True Blood." Photo courtesy of HBO

“My character has a really big presence, and he is vying for Sookie’s attention, too,” explains Manganiello.

After his update about love on the set, Joe wanted to touch base about his first love—the Pittsburgh Steelers. “How’s Ben doing?” Manganiello asked (it’s been noted that he’s sweet). Manganiello is anxious and excited about another season of great Steelers football. “I bleed black and gold,” he admits.

If you need further proof, take a look at DieHardz, the 2007 short documentary he produced and directed about diehard Steelers fans convening at a Los Angeles bar. (Watch it below.) That’s just one way Manganiello has brought his love of Steelers football to Los Angeles, where he now lives.

His passion for the game makes even more sense when you discover that this 1995 Mount Lebanon High School graduate was a varsity football player at the school, not to mention serving as the captain of the basketball and volleyball teams. “I thought I was going to play basketball in college,” says Manganiello, who makes use of the brawn of his athletic physique in his acting gigs.

Nowadays, Manganiello has found his way around the tube, with appearances on almost every network and cable channel. To name a few: He’s been sexy bartender Owen on the CW’s “One Tree Hill” for three seasons, hot guy Brad on CBS’s “How I Met Your Mother” and Officer Litchman on NBC’s “ER.” He’s also been featured on NBC’s “Scrubs” and CBS’s “CSI:NY” and “CSI: Miami.”

If you stay couch-bound during commercial breaks from watching a show Manganiello isn’t on—don’t worry. You also can catch him on a recent Taco Bell commercial, where he’s gunning for a chicken tortada on a busy street playing—what else?—tall, dark and hungry.

Q+A

PM: When did you know you’d be gunning for an acting career?
J.M.: It was always a childhood dream, and then during my senior year in high school, I played Jud in our production of Oklahoma. I loved it.

PM: What’s one thing people might be surprised to learn about you?
J.M.: My first audition at CMU, I didn’t make the cut, and I wasn’t accepted into their acting program, so I attended the University of Pittsburgh for a year. I worked my butt off doing theater, auditioning for every- and anything. At the end of that year, I auditioned again at CMU and was one of 17 students selected for the acting program.

PM: What was it like growing up in Mount Lebanon?
J.M.: I loved watching monster movies and Boris Karloff films. My dad had to hide all the Stephen King books. I wanted to be those scary characters. I attended St. Bernard School in Mount Lebanon, and one of the nuns told our class that “God could move mountains if your faith is pure.” So I started getting up at 5:30 a.m. to be ready for 6 a.m. Mass. Weeks on end, I would pray that God would make me into a werewolf. Twenty-five years later I play one on TV.

PM: Which brings me to your next project about prayer.
J.M.: It’s in development right now that I’ll be part of the cast for the new CBS series called “Livin’ on a Prayer,” a Pittsburgh-set comedy about a couple of working-class characters. During production they have me wearing Steelers gear on set— you’ll have to look for the show in the fall.

Look for Joe Manganiello on “True Blood,” premiering June 13 on HBO.


Below: Joe Manganiello's 2007 documentary about diehard Steeler fans, "DieHardz."

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit Module Edit ModuleShow TagsEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

The Latest

The 5 Best Seats at PPG Paints Arena

From ultra-premium experiences to bargains with great views, here are five perfect places to watch the Pens.

Lawrenceville Distilling Co. Introduces Its Absinthe

Already known for its Parking Chair vodka, the Lawrenceville distillery introduces absinthe named for a haunted house.

What Brought Walt Disney to Pittsburgh

A futuristic attraction at the Allegheny County Fair drew a curious Walt Disney to Pittsburgh — and had a lasting impact on modern transportation.

Writer Damon Young on "What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker"

The co-founder of Very Smart Brothas chats about his new memoir — and the state of Pittsburgh.

Makeup Makers: More Beauty Brands are Coming out of Pittsburgh

A pair of local businesses are breaking into the health and beauty business with innovation and tenacity.

How Well Do You Know Pittsburgh?

What do you know about the fountain of youth in North Park? The relics at St. Anthony’s? The history of Pittsburghese? We bring you all this and more in our guide to Pittsburgh lore full of insider info and fun facts. Plus, take our quizzes to test your expertise of all things Pittsburgh.

Are You a Yinzer or a Pretender?

Whether you’ve lived in Pittsburgh your whole life or are a newcomer, there may be things you don’t know about our city — but you should –– so we have these quizzes to test your knowledge of the city’s pop culture, sports, food history and locales.

Restaurant Review: Northeastern Kitchen

The Squirrel Hill restaurant introduces Pittsburgh to Dongbei cuisine.

PM on KD: The Spring Weddings Issue

PM Content Coordinator Jesseca Muslin appears on KDKA's Pittsburgh Today Live to discuss our spring weddings issue.

Pens Need More from Malkin More Than Anything

Given what he’s capable of, and what we’ve too often seen instead, Evgeni Malkin has been the Pens’ most under-achieving player.

Pittsburgh's 12 Essential Restaurants

Step-by-step, these establishments helped build our dining scene. Even better, they still have something to offer today.

Finding a Unique Performer Close to Home

Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater Company searched across the country for a key role in “Savior Samuel.” Then they found Aaliyah Sanders — in Edgewood.

Ten Thoughts While Staring at a Golden Eagle

Reflections upon encountering Autumn, a four-year-old golden eagle now residing at the National Aviary.

Love Thy Neighbor: Donating a Second Chance

Rachelle Jeffers and Allen ‘Bud’ Mitchell went to church together but they weren’t close. That changed when she found out he would die unless he found a liver donor. That’s how Jeffers became one of a growing number of living liver donors.

Our 50 Years: Rules for Dating in Pittsburgh in 1984

We took a serious look at romance. But with advice ranging from making sure restaurants have seductive lighting to the benefits of owning your own mansion, was it really meant to be serious?
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags


Finding a Unique Performer Close to Home

Finding a Unique Performer Close to Home

Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater Company searched across the country for a key role in “Savior Samuel.” Then they found Aaliyah Sanders — in Edgewood.

Comments

Love at First Bite? Primanti’s Offers to Pay for Your Wedding

Love at First Bite? Primanti’s Offers to Pay for Your Wedding

The offer comes with a few strings attached.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Lawrenceville Distilling Co. Introduces Its Absinthe

Lawrenceville Distilling Co. Introduces Its Absinthe

Already known for its Parking Chair vodka, the Lawrenceville distillery introduces absinthe named for a haunted house.

Comments

Pittsburgh Pizza News: DiAnoia’s to Open Pizzeria Davide

Pittsburgh Pizza News: DiAnoia’s to Open Pizzeria Davide

The popular Strip District eatery is set to expand with a to-go pizza counter.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
The 5 Best Seats at PPG Paints Arena

The 5 Best Seats at PPG Paints Arena

From ultra-premium experiences to bargains with great views, here are five perfect places to watch the Pens.

Comments

Fitness: Five Great Trails to Run in the Fall in Pittsburgh

Fitness: Five Great Trails to Run in the Fall in Pittsburgh

Don’t resign yourself to the gym treadmills just yet – fall is one of the best times of the year to get outside and pound the pavement, surrounded by falling leaves and the possibility of grabbing a hot latte on the way home.

Comments


Ten Thoughts While Staring at a Golden Eagle

Ten Thoughts While Staring at a Golden Eagle

Reflections upon encountering Autumn, a four-year-old golden eagle now residing at the National Aviary.

Comments

Landmark Concert Revives Spirituals on the Hill

Landmark Concert Revives Spirituals on the Hill

The Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh and Ebenezer Baptist Church team up for "Let My People Go! A Spiritual Journey on the Underground Railroad."

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Pens Need More from Malkin More Than Anything

Pens Need More from Malkin More Than Anything

Given what he’s capable of, and what we’ve too often seen instead, Evgeni Malkin has been the Pens’ most under-achieving player.

Comments

Even Brady, Belichick Still Take a Back Seat to Lombardi

Even Brady, Belichick Still Take a Back Seat to Lombardi

Appreciating the Patriots requires a healthy dose of historical perspective.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
The 400-Word Review: Happy Death Day 2U

The 400-Word Review: Happy Death Day 2U

The horror sequel pivots in unexpected directions, for better and for worse.

Comments

The 400-Word Review: Alita: Battle Angel

The 400-Word Review: Alita: Battle Angel

Producer James Cameron and Director Robert Rodriguez team up for a sci-fi epic depressingly similar to a dozen others.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
An Email Spam Filter Delayed their Relationship for Years

An Email Spam Filter Delayed their Relationship for Years

Sometimes, the future love of your life is just around the corner, whether you know it or not.

Comments

How Many Steps Would You Climb for Unique Wedding Photos?

How Many Steps Would You Climb for Unique Wedding Photos?

Pittsburgh has 739 sets of public staircases, and you can get photographs on them that are just as breathtaking as the ones you could get on more iconic spots like Mt. Washington.

Comments


Weekly inspiration for your home from the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine
Upscale Townhouses Slated for Strip District Near Produce Terminal

Upscale Townhouses Slated for Strip District Near Produce Terminal

Part of a three-phase plan, the 3- and 4-bedroom townhouses range in price from the mid-$600,000s up to $1 million.

Comments

Pittsburgh Textile Designer Launches Chic Wallpaper Line

Pittsburgh Textile Designer Launches Chic Wallpaper Line

Savannah Hayes adds six new wallpaper designs to her line of throw blankets, accessories and tea towels.

Comments