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Lea DeLaria On Wedding Plans & Why She Loves OITNB

Lea DeLaria On Wedding Plans & Why She Loves OITNB

Laverne Cox, Lea DeLaria, and Yael Stone in season 3 of Netflix's "Orange is the New Black."
JoJo Whilden/Netflix

'Never been a better time to be a woman in Hollywood'


Laverne Cox, Lea DeLaria & Yael Stone in 'OITNB' Season 3 | Photo Credit: JoJo Whilden/Netflix

"What could be better than being on this amazing show?" Lea DeLaria proclaims when asked about the fact that she's a series regular on Orange Is the New Black. "Not only am I working with the legend that is Jenji Kohan: It's a hit, and it's politically astute."

Now that she's a series regular, DeLaria says she's even more thrilled since she owes so much to the show -- including the fact it's how she met her fiancee, Chelsea Fairless (they were introduced by costar Emma Myles who plays Leanne). The couple were engaged earlier this winter after dating for two-and-half years and are planning to have a big wedding, according to DeLaria.

"There's nothing we can do about it," DeLaria says. "I'm Italian! Chelsea will have like 10 and I'll have 60. And then there's the cast and the friends and the crew. But we're going to try to keep it under 200. It'll be a destination wedding for anyone who's not a New Yorker."

The camaraderie she feels with her costars seems palpable: "We're all pals," she says, explaining that she hangs out constantly with Lori Petty, Myles, and Taryn Manning. "They're all straight, but we have massive texting: Let's go to the Cubbyhole" -- referring to the lesbian bar in the West Village -- "Let's go have brunch. We try to work it out so we all can party. It's not like I only hang out with the dykes. We're all the 'grease punks' and love each other."

By now, you know that in the third season of OITNB, DeLaria's character Boo finally got to tell her story. Not only did she get to wear a strap-on and have sex with a girlfriend (in a flashback), but in one episode, she has a verbal showdown with an evangelical preacher, something she says she can relate to.

"It mirrored my life so much that it was frightening," she explained after the season debuted. "But I can say this, if you're a butch lesbian like I am, you have very shared experiences. There are a lot of common experiences between butches. The thing about the clothes, that's always a big fight for us. I used to run when Easter Sunday came around. I would run and hide because I knew that they would make me wear that damn dress."


So has her life changed that she's spending so much more time in L.A.? "It basically means they own me now," she says, only half-joking. "It used to be that I could book other things, now I'm totally devoted to Orange Is the New Black. You won't be seeing me as much on other things. But that's OK: I'm completely devoted."

DeLaria hopes to find time to perform on Broadway or Off-Broadway in the near future, and jokes when asked about Fun Home, the biggest lesbian story to be a hit on the Great White Way.

"It pisses me the fuck off that there's a show about a butch dyke on Broadway and there isn't a part for me. Let me just say that!" she says, once again half in jest, continuing: "I have been an intensely outspoken person for this show. I'm such an advocate for Fun Home. I loved the graphic novel. In fact, when the book came out, I did a little tour with Alison Bechdel in England because I was living over there at the time. What they Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori done with the piece is amazing."

In the meantime she's also been focusing on her singing career and released her album of David Bowie jazz covers, titled House of David.

"It's so good," she says. "I'm tryin not to sound like the biggest asshole on the planet -- you have no idea how hard I am on myself -- but I love this album."

Other than her acting and singing career, she has one other wish: "I hope Hillary runs against Ted Cruz, that pie-faced, dick-nosed, sexist homophobic son of a bitch. I hope she kicks his ass all over the United States. That putz. It would be so fun to watch."

Thanks, Lea. We couldn't think of a better way to express that sentiment.

Listen to selections from House of David here.

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