What started as a professional relationship has become a deep, abiding friendship. In a testament to that bond, Eva Longoria has revealed that Felicity Huffman defended her against a Desperate Housewives bully. Longoria and Huffman worked together on the soapy drama from 2004 to 2012 and have remained close since. Now, amid Huffman’s college admission scandal woes, Longoria is stepping forward to discuss how she was bullied on set — and how Huffman was the only co-star to step in and intervene on her behalf.
In a letter obtained by NBC News, Longoria described to a judge how impactful Huffman’s friendship has been to her. It was during their decade together on Desperate Housewives, according to Longoria, that proved to her what a “good friend” Huffman was. “When I began the TV show, I was very new to the business and industry as a whole. Felicity was the first one to take me under her wing,” Longoria said, adding, “Her gentle character and kind heart immediately opened up to me. She approached me, introduced herself and said, ‘Don’t be scared, we will get through this together,’ as she sat down beside me and never left my side since that day.”
Longoria then went on to detail her experience with the on-set bully, admitting, “I dreaded the days I had to work with that person because it was pure torture.” Ultimately, Huffman stepped in and stopped the bullying. “I know I would not have survived those 10 years if it wasn’t for the friendship of Felicity,” said Longoria.
Eva Longoria tells the judge that, while working on Desperate Housewives, Felicity Huffman helped Longoria confront a bully, supported her when she wasn't nominated for a Golden Globe, and vouched for her in contract negotiations. pic.twitter.com/5PUfGLTXuq
— Aaron Leibowitz (@aaron_leib) September 6, 2019
Huffman’s intervention with the bully wasn’t the only way she helped Longoria along the way, either. As Longoria tells it, Huffman was always there for her, from comforting her when she was the only star who didn’t get an award show nod to convincing the rest of the cast to re-negotiate their salaries so Longoria would have pay equity.
Longoria was one of 27 people, including Huffman’s husband William H. Macy, who wrote letters speaking to the Huffman’s character. Huffman currently faces federal charges for mail fraud and honest services fraud after paying $15,000 to have an SAT proctor change one of her daughter’s test answers.
Earlier this week, federal prosecutors pushed for Huffman to receive jail time, calling Huffman’s actions “deliberate and manifestly criminal.” They recommended she spend one month behind bars, followed by a year of supervised release. “In the context of this case, neither probation nor home confinement (in a large home in the Hollywood Hills with an infinity pool) would constitute meaningful punishment or deter others from committing similar crimes,” the prosecutors insisted.
Huffman is among 50 affluent parents, coaches and counselors being charged in the college admissions scandal.