The Modern Family star, 51, is gearing up for the release of Griselda, a new Netflix limited series in which she plays Griselda Blanco, a Colombian drug trafficker who controlled Miami’s underworld in the Seventies and Eighties.
One week after hitting back at a TV host who mocked her accent, Vergara appeared on Fallon’s US talk show to provide some insight into her preparations for the role of Blanco, who was one of the biggest drug dealers in Colombia.
She told the host of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon that her experiences growing up in Colombia drew her to the part, adding she was delighted by the opportunity to collaborate with some of the best Latin American actors working in the industry right now.
Vergara then added that the director of Griselda, Andrés Baiz, helped her prepare for the role and “taught me how to smoke, how to do cocaine” before Fallon interrupted her, prompting laughs from the audience.
Unaware of the misunderstanding, Vergara continued: “It was amazing because I was 51 and I didn’t even know how to light a cigarette. I had never done cocaine. So, it was amazing. It was a great experience.”
When the audience roared with laughter, she realised her error and clarified: “Everything was fake, but the acting was real”.
Vergara, who previously described being a part of Griselda as both a “pleasure and torture,” said Blanco’s role was deeply fascinating.
“It was fascinating for me because one of the reasons she was able to get away with so much was actually because she was a woman,” she told Fallon. “And they never thought that a woman was capable of doing all the horrific things she did.”
In an earlier interview with CBS News, Vergara spoke candidly about her divorce from Joe Manganiello, reflecting on their split in the public eye.
Addressing the constant attention on her former relationship with the Magic Mike star, she confessed: “I’ve been moving on. You’re out there and people know that’s part of being a celebrity. I knew it was gonna happen. You can’t hide those things.”
Fans were shocked when Vergara and Manganiello announced their decision to divorce in July 2023 after nine years together.
Vergara told the US channel she was pleasantly surprised by the kindness and respect she received from the press, in the aftermath of their split.
“It wasn’t bad. I think, you know, I have to say the press was very respectful and very nice,” she noted. “And I thought that they were gonna invent more things, and you know how it usually is. I was surprised and they kind of just said what it was and that was it.”
Griselda will be available for streaming on Netflix on 25 January.