Sasha Alexander is savoring family time while “Rizzoli & Isles” is on its seasonal hiatus — with plans to spend Thanksgiving time here in California with her family, and the Christmas season in Europe with husband Edoardo Ponti and his kin, which includes his mother, Sophia Loren.
“My mom is making Thanksgiving. She’s a great cook. She likes to cook alone, so I’m making pumpkin and blueberry pies to bring,” reports the actress, whose hit series returns to the TNT lineup Monday, Nov. 28.
Then it will be off to Switzerland for the Pontis. Five-year-old Lucia has started to ski, says her proud mom, and baby Leonardo will turn one Dec. 20 — another family celebration.
“I grew up in Los Angeles, and never had snow at Christmas. The last eight years with my husband, I’ve gone to spend the holidays in Europe and I have to say, it’s grown on me,” says Alexander. “They indulge Christmas down to every detail. It’s so beautiful, so relaxing. I really love it now. I love to bundle up and go outside in the fresh air.”
Alexander notes that she and fellow “Rizzoli & Isles” star Angie Harmon communicate occasionally when they’re off work. “But she’s in Charlotte. North Carolina and I’m out here. She kind of buckles down with the family back East. We get back into our little family holes between seasons. We see each other all the time six months of the year.”
According to Alexander, the new episodes that begin airing next week will show a testing of the friendship between Harmon’s police detective Jane Rizzoli and her character, medical examiner Dr. Maura Isles.
“As my executive producer says, these two women are facing real life issues. They happen to be friends. Anyone who has friends knows they have disagreements, they don’t always see eye-to-eye. These two are not fighting over who looks better in a little black dress or over guys. They’re actually dealing with complicated issues about boundaries or rules.” Still, Jane’s brother, Tommy (Colin Egglesfield) and his increasingly obvious chemistry with Maura is apparently going to be part of the reason for the clash.
Notes Alexander, “The season ends in kind of a shocking way. I’m very interested in seeing how the fans respond to it.”
CELEBRITY BITES: Holly Robinson Peete tells us that she and her family “have a fried turkey every year for Thanksgiving. Fried turkey’s not for everyone. We have the fire department on speed dial.”
According to Bill Engvall, his traditional Thanksgiving feast goes like this: “I get up early and start smoking a turkey. We usually eat around 1:00 and then watch football.”
Julia Louis-Dreyfus says she usually leaves cooking of the main Thanksgiving Day meal to the rest of her family, while she focuses on baking goodies. “I love to bake. I have a terrible sweet tooth, and I cook for that tooth.”