Model story of H’wood success

How’s this for a Hollywood story to start 1994: A 21-year-old model goes in to read for a two-line part and lands the leading role in a Hollywood feature. Now, producers and directors are starting to look upon her as one of the industry’s future stars.

That’s exactly what has happened to Elite Modeling’s Cameron Diaz, who announcedThursday that she has signed for theatrical representation with Nick Styne of the Writers & Artists Agency.

Early in 1993, Diaz went to read for a two-line, walk-on role in director Ken Russell’s “The Mask,” which at $ 20 million marks New Line Cinema’s biggest budget risk ever. Instead, she landed the lead female role, opposite Jim Carrey.

Agent Styne admits, “Most models aren’t natural actors,” but believes that Diaz has the same type of natural affinity for acting that has helped the likes of Michelle Pfeiffer and Kim Basinger make the transition.

Diaz will be represented as a model by Elite Modeling’s Robin Levy, but the priority these days is the movie biz, Styne said. After landing the role in “The Mask,” Diaz began taking acting lessons.

Next week, Diaz is scheduled to read for “sex, lies and videotape” director Stephen Soderbergh’s “The Underneath” for Universal.

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