America Ferrera Makes 'Ugly' Beautiful

Jan. 8, 2007 — -- America Ferrera has made it cool to be "ugly."

The Golden Globe-nominated actress has won fans and accolades for her role in the hit ABC show "Ugly Betty." She recently told ABC News' Robin Roberts that she couldn't be happier about her Golden Globe nomination for best actress and for best show.

"We've worked so hard, and now we can celebrate it together," Ferrera said. "It is a wonderful cast and crew and show to be on. Everyone is so excited."

Though some people were appalled by the show's title when it first came out, Ferrera's confident that viewers now get the message that "ugly" isn't meant to insult.

"I think we knew the title would be a little jarring. But once you see it, then you know," she said. "You get it. You know there's irony in the title and it's a commentary on the definition of what ugly and beautiful is."

The show makes it easy to empathize with Ferrera's character.

"It is very clear from the start that Betty is the hero," Ferrera said. "She's the one you're supposed to love and who is probably the most beautiful on the inside of everyone in the show."

'Ugly Betty' Votes

While viewers love Ferrera on the screen, they don't always know who she is away from the camera.

"People give me looks and think, 'Do I know you from high school?' They don't know exactly where to place me but they recognize me," she said. "But I went to vote with my glasses and braces at my lunch break and they're like, 'Oh, my God, ugly Betty is voting.' That created a little stir."

Ferrera was pleased to see her character become a popular costume on Halloween.

"That was really fun to see little girls and old men dressing up as 'ugly Betty,'" she said.

While Ferrera's wrapped up in the excitement of the show, she still wants to complete her college education. She's a few classes away from getting a degree from the University of Southern California.

"My mom reminded me just the other day [that] I still owe her my diploma," she said. "I have a semester left."

For now, though, Ferrera will be spending much of her time with the cast and crew of the show, turning "ugly" into a smash hit week after week.