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Vinny Guadagnino.

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Jersey Shore’s Vinny Guadagnino on Jionni’s Death Threats, Italian Haters, and Avoiding The Situation

He's usually Jersey Shore’s answer to Dr. Phil, but this season Vinny Guadagnino inserted himself right into the drama by smushing everyone’s favorite Meatball while she was broken up with her camera-shy Gorilla Juicehead, Jionni, for all of five minutes. We spoke with Guadagnino ahead of tonight’s season-four finale, when the gang says Come se dice "good-bye" to Florence, about hooking up with Snooki, aspiring to be an actor, and avoiding The Situation.

Let’s get the Snooki stuff out of the way. Last we heard from Jionni, he was threatening to …
Kill me?

Well, I was going to say confront you, but yes, to kill you. Have you guys come face-to-face?
Well, it’s safe to say — I can put it on record — that I’m alive. In case anybody was worried. We’ve already filmed season five and I’ve seen the kid a couple of times, obviously, since he’s Snooki’s boyfriend. But I’m still here. The next season starts as soon as we get back to Jersey, so these story lines pick right up. But it’s all good. I’m not a confrontational guy. I chill back and only fight when I have to.

What did your mom think of the Snooki hookup?
My mother’s my biggest supporter. My mom and my family get it because they’ve been on the show. They know what I go through, and for the most part I feel like I do the right thing. You never really see me acting a fool on TV. Maybe once in a while, but they film us 24 hours a day and I’m a 23-year-old kid. There are some things that my family and I don’t talk about. But for the most part, I don’t think I disappointed anybody. If anything, it’s the opposite. They’re like, "Oh, Vinny, you’re so sweet!" My upbringing shows.

In last week’s episode, it seemed like the Florentines really turned on you guys. Was that hard for you, considering your Italian roots?
I don’t take it personally. That happens anywhere. You’re in a humongous club the size of a stadium with hundreds of people on top of each other and all of a sudden a crew walks in with cameras and security guards and every girl wants to talk to us. We’re famous and all eyes are on us. Mix alcohol with that and you’re going to get at least one guy that starts yelling something. But I don’t think that was about the Italians. I’m not even from that region of Italy, you know what I’m saying? My family aren’t haters; they would never do stuff like that. It is what it is, but I judged it as one particular club at one particular moment. The Italians were nice to us. Florence is all tourists anyway.

How’s your relationship with The Situation these days? Will everyone kiss and makeup in the finale?
I was never best friends with Mike to begin with. I probably get along with him better now than I ever did. I just kind of handle him, but at the same time he’s a dramatic person and I’m not into that. That’s why I steer clear of him. Off the show we never really talk; we never have. We see each other at events and stuff — there are no hard feelings or anything — but on the show what you’re seeing now is me just avoiding drama. I can’t deal with it. It’s stressful enough being away from home, so I don’t need any more stress. And he brings a lot.

You just filmed an episode of 90210. Tell me about your role in that.
I play a cocky celebrity who’s just chilling poolside in Vegas. It was cool, because I got to play someone like myself — because I do go to Vegas — but I’m not this cocky celebrity that sits in high-stakes poker rooms. It’s fun to play a role. Any time I get these parts it’s cool, because I have to act and actually think about my character and how I’m going to act it out on-camera.

And acting is something you want to pursue down the line?
Yeah. That’s the reason I do this. I’ve always been in school plays and performing monologues and taking drama. Now I’m in acting classes. I do it the real way. I want to be a working actor. I would love that. I just like being on a series and having a script, and I want that to be my nine-to-five.

There are rumors you left the house during filming of season five.
I did leave for a little bit. I took a break, but then I went back and finished. Everyone takes breaks once in a while. Sammi left last year for a little bit; now it’s just a lot crazier in the media so everyone reports on it. But they don’t know why I did it. People were saying I left because I got in a fight with somebody or this or that, but when you see the show you’ll see what my reason was for leaving.

What other sneak peek can you give us?
I haven’t actually seen season five yet. I haven’t even seen the finale of season four. I just think it’s going to be cool to see us get rereleased into the wild. It’s going to be a real homecoming. Like, "Oh, the kids are back."

Photo: Patrick McMullan