updated 11/09/2009 AT 5:00 PM ET
•originally published 11/17/2009 AT 9:40 AM ET
Never has an alien looked so out of this world. When the Visitors landed on Earth on ABC’s hit sci-fi drama, V last Tuesday, none was more captivating than Morena Baccarin.
The stunning, 30-year-old Brazilian-born actress – who previously starred on Firefly – made quite a first impression with humans and viewers alike in her role as Anna, the sly and smooth alien leader. (V airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on ABC through November.)
Here are five things you may not know about TV’s hottest new star.
1. She is a gourmet cook: “I love to get random recipes and try them. I cook very few things twice,” she says. “Saveur magazine is my favorite magazine, and they have simple and unusual recipes I like to try.”
2. She had a crush on her V costar Scott Wolf: She wasn’t obsessed, but Baccarin admits that 15 years ago she was a huge Party of Five fan. “I loved it,” she says. And Wolf’s appeal on the show was simple: “He was the nice guy. I do remember watching it and [thinking] he was very hot.” These days, however, Baccarin’s affections are reserved for her boyfriend of two years, director Austin Chick.
3. Her pooch helped her through a rough patch: Baccarin, who splits her time between New York City and Los Angeles, often travels with her dog, Rudy. “He is a Löwchen, which is a rare breed of dog from Germany,” she says, confessing that her love affair with the dog began “after I had gone through a breakup a few years ago. I went to the Santa Monica pound and friend of mine convinced me to get him. I thought he was a mutt, but he’s a purebred from Germany that was bred to be a lap dog for royalty. Every day I’ve been so thankful I got him. He’s the sweetest little guy. He doesn’t bark. He doesn’t chew [on things]. Sometimes I want to get more.
4. She’s a wine lover: One of Baccarin’s favorite vacations was a trip to Seville, Spain, with Chick. “The food! Aus and I are big wine lovers, and Spanish wines are amazing. We love eating out, and the tapas and wine there are to die for.”
5. She’s not really evil!: Baccarin may play a calculating alien with plans to eradicate the human race – but at home she loves to laugh and keep things light. When it’s time to unwind, “I don’t watch much TV, but I recently got addicted to Modern Family,” she says. “It’s one of my favorite shows.”
PeopleTV Archive: V Stars Talk Aliens – and Lizards!