Within Felicity Huffman's plan to rebuild her life


The Emmy Awards were once Felicity Huffman and William H. MacyIt is bread and butter.

Each of the venerable actors, the couple of several decades has about 14 greetings between them with Macy moving away a double winner in 2003 for writing and acting in the television movie Door to door and Huffman accepts a trophy for his first season of Desperate housewives in 2005.

For three consecutive years, from 2015 to 2017, each walked the carpet as nominees (he for his long turn as the morally ambiguous patriarch of Shameless«Clan Gallagher; her for three different roles in American crime), gaining as much attention for their acting skills as their acts of worship in front of a step and repeat.

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Because if they added to their trophy showcase or not, the two were simply there for each other. Making way for the press line last year, when Macy was once again ShamelessHuffman summed up his plan for the night.

"Tonight if Bill wins, we will dance. And if Bill loses, we will go out to dinner," he said, speaking with People. "Then it is a win-win."

Last year, the positive side was harder to find.

Instead of mixing among his contemporaries, celebrating as his limited series based on a true story When they see us It became one of the stories to feel good at night, she was present only in the form of a blow line.

"The producers asked me to give special thanks to any of our winners of previous leading actresses who are watching tonight from prison," host Thomas Lennon He joked while delivering the Outstanding Reality Series Award: Competition. "I hope those two weeks fly by. Keep your head up."

Frankly, just passing the jail sentence may have been the easy part.

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No easy, per se, his 11 days spent in olive green at the Federal Correction Institution in Dublin in Northern California just feels like a trip to the spa. Located just east of San Francisco, the women's minimum security facility houses some 1,230 inmates who must follow strict rules (for example, cribs should be straightened at 6:30 am Monday through Friday) and have portions that are limited to hygiene kit without frills and a roll of toilet paper.

Then, by October 25, after some visits by Macy and her youngest daughter Georgia, Huffman was likely relieved to obtain an early release, the prison policy of not discharging inmates on weekends (more credit for the time served since her initial arrest in March) she officially served the full two-week sentence she received for paying an admissions consultant to help her take her oldest daughter's SAT.

But his brief step behind bars is nothing compared to re-entering an industry as fierce as Hollywood. (Ask for Martha Stewart if she still swallows the cracks about her conviction of insider trading.) And although it's hard to imagine someone as talented as Huffman, who told her with confidence Haute living In 2017, "I would say that I am in the best place of my career in which I have been," she will not be able to return to television screens, she is more worried about being part of the role model, responsible citizen and good person.


And that starts with helping other prison veterans return his feet, most women in this situation do not have the same support system and the considerable mansion in Los Angeles to return to as Huffman, who turns 57 today in silence.

While the actress was already familiar with a lot of charitable activities, a person who did a lot of good before she was ordered by the court was looking for a new organization to devote her time to. Enter: A New Way of Life, a Los Angeles group dedicated to helping women who were once imprisoned to return home with jobs and jobs, ensuring a smoother transition to society.

"Felicity is a genuine and caring person with her feet on the ground (and) she has been very helpful and supportive of women here," said founder Susan Burton, a former prisoner and recovering addict. People. "She has connected with them in a real way and you can feel it. I think it is because they know that she has experienced in a small way what they have been through being imprisoned."

In recent weeks, Burton told the media, the actress was helping prepare for the group's Sunday gala and dedicating herself to other household chores. "She has been cooking for women, cleaning the houses, buying and answering the phone," Burton said. Basically fulfilling the vote he had made to truly commit to his community service and pay his fees.

In his admission of unequivocal guilt, Huffman dedicated the statement he made in his September 13 ruling not to defend his case, but to offer his most sincere mea culpa. "I accept the decision of the court today without reservations," he began. "I was always prepared to accept any punishment imposed by Judge Talwani. I broke the law. I admitted it and found myself guilty of this crime. There are no excuses or justifications for my actions. Point."

Apologizing to his family, the educational community and "students who work hard every day to enter college, and with their parents who make huge sacrifices," he continued: "I have learned a lot in the last six months about my shortcomings as a person. My goal now is to fulfill the sentence given to me by the court. I hope to fulfill my community service hours and have a positive impact on my community. I also plan to continue making contributions whenever I can after that service the hours have completed. "

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"I can promise you that in the coming months and years I will try to live a more honest life, serve as a better example for my daughters and my family and continue to contribute my time and energy wherever they need me."

For now, he is turning much of that energy into his inner circle. In the months after his arrest in March, he attended family therapy sessions with Macy and his two daughters. Sophia, 19, and Georgia, 17, working to repair a relationship that, as Macy put it in his letter to the judge, "exploded,quot; when they learned about his role in the university admission scandal and the plans she He had established to give them an unfair advantage.

"There is much to do, and part of the pain and anger will take years to resolve," the actor shared in his note, "but we are making progress."

That started with the mother of all apologies, Sophia felt hurt and ashamed when she heard about Huffman's plan. (According to the criminal complaint, Huffman made arrangements to repeat the plan for his youngest daughter, but finally decided not to.)

"One of the hardest things I had to face after my arrest was when my daughter discovered what she had done and said: & # 39; I don't know who you are anymore, mom & # 39;", she shared in tears. Cut. "And then she collapsed and asked:" Why didn't you believe in me? Why didn't you think I could do it alone? "And then I didn't have an adequate answer for her. I don't have an adequate answer for her now. I can only say, I'm so sorry, Sophia. I was scared, I was stupid and I was very wrong. "

In an effort to correct those mistakes, she has been taking refuge at home, spending quality time with her family, which largely amounts to lengthy discussions during meals and walks in her Hollywood Hills neighborhood.

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Naturally, Macy, whose favorite response when asked about the secret of her 22-year-old marriage is some way of "marrying Felicity Huffman," has been supportive. As he wrote in his letter to the judge, he gives credit to the New York native, his former acting student, with everything that is good in his life, so he never considered anything less than a complete follow-up of his marriage vows.

"They are there for each other," says the source of the entire Huffman-Macy clan. "Everyone is very supportive of Felicity and tries to calm her anxiety and fears."

Huffman has even more fans outside the extensive heritage she and Macy share. Among the 27 people who wrote letters to the judge, intended to move her away from the one-year sentence suggested by prosecutors, was the actress. Desperate housewives co-star Eva Longoria, who gave credit to the star for helping her endure the harmful harassment she received on the set.

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"Felicity was the first to take me under her protection. From the first table read from the script, she realized that she was sitting alone, scared and unsure of where and what to do," Longoria wrote. "His gentle character and kind heart immediately opened towards me. He approached me, introduced himself and said:" Do not be afraid, we will overcome it together. "While he sat next to me and never moved away from me. my side since then. day. "

Huffman's friendship not only caught Longoria during her decade of filming, but the actress continued, to this day with the support of UNICEF who regularly participates in charity events she organizes for the Latino community. "She always leads with her heart," Longoria said, "and has always put others first."

Now with 250 hours of community service to complete, and his promise to go beyond that, he is adopting new causes.

In September, she and Sophia paid a visit to a Los Angeles center that supports homeless teenagers, and Huffman noted with enthusiasm the work they do. Since then, he has fully embraced The Teen Project along with his work for A New Way of Life.

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"She has been a great help and support to women here," Burton told People. "She has connected with them in a real way and you can feel it. I think it is because they know that she has experienced in a small way what they have been through being imprisoned."

Because Huffman hopes that his is also a story of redemption, an opportunity to dedicate this next chapter of his life to altruism not only because it is ordered by the court, but because it is the right thing to do. As a source told E! News, "She will focus on her community service and rebuilding her life."

And that may mean returning to a TV screen near you. Respected not only for her obvious talent but for her generous spirit, Huffman has the right combination of skill and sympathy with a good dose of humility that can set the stage for a comeback. "She hopes to return to work in the future," the source said. "Hollywood is a small town and nobody has anything bad to say about it. He feels he is paying his fees and has shown remorse for his actions. He hopes it will be accepted again."

(Originally published on October 10, 2019 at 3 a.m. PT)