Actress finds balance between work and life

Cameron Diaz’s new movie, The Holiday, opens in theatres today.


Sometimes even multimillionaire movie stars need a break from their daily grind.

Cameron Diaz is one of those celebrities who, after going full steam ahead with her career for almost a decade, decided she needed some time away from the flash bulbs and red carpets following the release of Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle in 2003.

While many actors decide they need to lay low after a hectic shooting schedule, Diaz did so for a different reason, namely the fact that the tabloid paparazzi simply wouldn’t leave her alone.

Her relationship with singer Justin Timberlake only exacerbated the celeb-shooters’ desire for candid photos of the former model and her beau.

Art imitates life somewhat in the new film The Holiday as Diaz’s workaholic character Amanda trades homes with forlorn British journalist Iris (Kate Winslet). Both are seeking refuge from men and a break from their careers, but both find love at opposite ends of the pond.

“I don’t think my life or career is a competition,” Diaz says of her career break during an interview in Los Angeles last month.

“I didn’t feel like I had to be somewhere for any other reason than if I wanted to be there. I just sort of hadn’t found anything that made me want to go back to work.”

Besides voiceover work in Shrek 2, it wouldn’t be until director Curtis Hanson offered her a part in the 2005 film In Her Shoes that Diaz would return to the silver screen in the flesh.

Listening to the 34 year old discuss her slow build to fame after winning a part opposite superstar Jim Carrey in 1994’s The Mask, to her smash 1998 hit There’s Something About Mary and then on through the Charlie’s Angels films, it would be easy to conclude that the devotion stars offer to their craft to achieve success is bittersweet.

“As we do when we’re in the beginning of our career and learning about acting and trying to keep the ball in motion, I did film after film after film which was amazing experience and I was thankful for it, but I got to the point where I (realized I) don’t have a house, I don’t have any place to put my bags, I haven’t been home, I haven’t seen my family, I have no friends.

“There was a part of my life that was really going strong so I didn’t have this other aspect of my life, so much like (The Holiday character) Amanda. In life you just have to have a balance so I took a slow down for a while which has been nice. I should probably pick it back up, but I really like it,” she says with her trademark giggle.

The Holiday, which opens today, as well as the upcoming Shrek The Third, will likely make that busy life a reality for Diaz yet again.

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