Sammi and Deena talk ‘Jersey Shore’: “We brought NJ to a better place”

‘Jersey Shore’ wraps up in Italy this Thursday night, with a few cast members more than ready to get back to tanning, hair straighteners and Jersey men.  Sammi “Sweetheart” Giancola and Deena Nicole Cortese told us all about the season abroad and what to expect in the finale:

“Lot’s of Mike drama,” says Deena. “Everybody’s just had enough, and they are just kind of sick of the Mike-isms that he’s pulled,” adds Sammi.  “He does it to himself and that’s just the way it is.”

Here’s what else they had to say about filming in Italy, being role models, and how they make New Jersey a better place!

On what they missed the most while filming in Florence:

Sammi – Tanning. I missed the gym, I missed my hair straightener.

Deena – MEN. I missed the men in Jersey.

If they are really drinking every night or if it’s edited to look that way:

Deena – No we do. But also, people don’t understand we are filming 24-7 we don’t have days that we take off of filming like other shows. And we have nothing. We don’t have a cellphone, we don’t have computers, we don’t have music in that house so if you’re not talking or anything u can hear a pin drop. So there’s nothing else to do besides party, hangout and go out. Anybody would kill themselves if they had to sit in that house without doing anything, so of course we are going to go out. That’s what the show is all about.

How they keep going night and day:

Sammi – For some reason I don’t know what it is, it must be all of us in that house we keep going and going and going…we are like the energizer bunnies. So I mean I don’t know, what else are we going to do…lay in bed all day? We have agendas.

Deena – Its actually a weird thing. In that house I don’t usually wake up with a hangover. Here at home I drink one day, I wake up and I feel like hell. But in that house, I don’t know if it’s like the adrenalin of being there, the cameras, I don’t know what it is, but I don’t wake up with a hangover. But a good hangover is vitamin B12 – you take that before you drink.

If they cringe or get embarrassed watching themselves on TV:

Sammi- Its funny…we really don’t care.

Deena – I cringe but sometimes I can’t help but laugh hysterical. I mean, did you see how I fell that one time? That was pretty funny. I think those are the funniest times. At this point we don’t get embarrassed. At this point, if I do good they’re gonna talk crap how I changed, if I stay the way I am, I’m crazy and I’m a drunk!  So either way I don’t win, so I might as well stay the way I am.

How they stay in shape with all the drinking and late night eating:

Sammi – I don’t know. Honestly, I have no idea. In Italy we barely went to the gym or anything like I have no idea.

Deena – We walked around a lot but we try and go to the gym and stuff. When I’m home I try and like watch what I eat but I’m happy having my curves.

Do they live similar lifestyle on air as off air:

Deena – I would definitely go down the shore, but I think on the show I drink more because there’s nothing else to do. I want to party – it’s summertime. I’m in Italy and I want to enjoy myself. But at home I like hanging out and just being normal. I’m not like a wild animal like people try to make me out to be.

Worst part of their new-found fame:

Sammi – I don’t think there is a bad part. I think just having people recognize you more often than ever before.

Deena – I think for me, being in the public eye so much because like if you lose 5 pounds its like ‘oh Deena got fat’ or you know? I think like being appearance-wise you always have to be on top of yourself. That’s the only bad part I think. Sometimes I like to go out and just eat a friggin cheeseburger in my pajamas!

What they are working on now:

Sammi – Right now I’m working on my perfume, called Dangerous – it’s dangerously sweet just like me. You can get it at or at Mandees stores, and its my product that im really pushing and launching right now.

Deena – I actually just partnered with a hair product company called Whisper. There’s a Whisper hair salon I go to and I decided I wanted to partner with the product because it’s really really good and we are trying to make it bigger. And also I have jewelry and an iPhone app coming out!

What to expect in Season 5 of Jersey Shore:

Deena – It’s just gonna be a lot more fun. I think its going to be a lot lighter …not so dramatic. At this point we are so close and comfortable with each other because this is the first time going right through to the two seasons, so it’s definitely going to be a season different from the rest.

If we’ll see any new romances:

Deena – Oh, I don’t know – it’s the Jersey shore baby!

Why ‘Jersey Shore’ has become so successful:

Sammi – I just think we are ourselves and a lot of people can relate to us in many ways.

What they think about the recent poll that found most NJ residents think the show is bad for NJ:

Sammi – I think that to be honest with you ‘Jersey Shore’ brought Seaside back to life. Seaside’s doing fabulous now because of the show. And I think in general we are just representing ourselves. I’m not representing NJ as a state as a whole. We are individuals, we are unique. And it’s really sad that people have to stereotype us to make other things be bad or look good.

Deena – Actually I think we are pretty good – as much as we drink and stuff, I think we are pretty good role models. We’re not doing drugs; you don’t see us in the news for being on crack and stuff. We are business-like. We are good kids. We’re nice people, we are genuine… I live 20 minutes from Seaside. Until the show aired it was called ‘sleeside’. People were dealing drugs, it became not a family oriented place. And now it’s like family oriented… it’s clean again. It brought back a lot of business and people, and I think in honesty we brought NJ to a better place.

What they think about other Jersey centered shows like ‘RHONJ’ and ‘Jerseylicious’:

Deena – Well, we like the ‘Housewives of NJ’. I really like the ‘Housewives of NJ’ – the Manzos are great people and they are just being themselves too. Like you know what, I think that Jersey is a good time! I love Jersey and I love Jersey people. They have good character!

The season finale of “Jersey Shore” airs Thursday, Oct. 20 on MTV. Click here for our interview with Vinny!

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