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Entertainment

The ex-Laker Girl who looks like the moon

- Raymond de Asis Lo L.A. Correspondent -
"It’s not the easiest transition from a Laker Girl to an actor," ponders Moon Bloodgood.

The striking newcomer was writing songs with Paul Anka and performing with Prince and Brandy three years ago when she was asked to audition for NBC’s hit sitcom Just Shoot Me. It proved to be successful and paved the way for her to appear in several other TV shows, including a few TV pilots that, sadly, did not air.

She made her film debut in the 2004 romantic-comedy hit Win a Date with Tad Hamilton", in which, interestingly, she was simply credited as the "gorgeous woman" in several production credits.

But, now, she is leading lady in Disney’s Antarctic Adventure Eight Below.

"I was always a dancer and I never thought of myself as an actress," she points out.

"I got into music and then suddenly I got thrown into acting and I said, ‘Oh, I wanna do this, I wanna study this.’ I am not saying I’m a well-trained actor but people say, ‘You’re a natural,’ and I was, ‘Okay, then I could do this.’"

"I grew up dancing on the streets," she recalls. "When people ask me, ‘What do you do for a living?’ I still hesitate to say I’m an actress."

"I’m an actress! I can’t believe I’m saying that. I’m really doing this! It’s so surreal for me. Now, I am doing this interview!"

Moon Bloodgood met with this writer recently at the press junket for Eight Below, a new movie based on a true story of eight snow dogs and their amazing tale of survival. The movie also stars Paul Walker and American Pie actor Jason Biggs.

She was accompanied by her mom, who sat quietly in a nearby couch, as she did the rounds of interviews at the plush Regent Beverly Hotel in Beverly Hills.

The star plays Katie in the movie. She’s a rescue pilot who, along with Walker’s character, dared face the treacherous Antarctic winter to rescue a pack of guide dogs stranded after a severe storm.

This film is a huge breakthrough for the actress who once dreamed of a better life.

"It’s getting better now in Hollywood," she shares excitedly. "I am getting leading parts. I feel like they’re giving me a chance. I have had producers say to me, ‘You know what? We want something different. We’re tired of the same old thing, we want you.’"

Bloodgood grew up in a not so well-off side of Anaheim in Orange County. Her mom worked three jobs to support the family. Her father died when she was still young.

"She (her mom) came to this country and she didn’t have anything," Bloodgood says. "I saw how hardworking she was. It really was a sad story for me."

"There was something. I have no idea what it was. Maybe, perhaps it was my mom, but I always said to myself, ‘I am gonna get past this. I am not gonna live like this. I am gonna be successful,’" Bloodgood adds.

"Her background was hard and I didn’t want to be like another person and struggle at a job. I wanna be good at something."

Although she graced the campaigns for Clairol, Revlon and Avon, her mixed ethnicity proved to be a tough challenge when she was younger. She is part-Korean and part-Dutch.

"Growing up, I never felt like I was attractive. I am too different. I was mixed. I didn’t know who I am," she recalls with a half-smile.

When she noticed that the interview seemed to be veering more toward the sob tales from her childhood, the actress paused and delightedly revealed how she got her name.

"My mother was so poor. She walks through the villages in Korea and gathers leaves. One time, she looked up at the moon and prayed. When I was born, she told me I was so round I looked like the moon she saw that night," Bloodgood discloses.

(Eight Below is now showing nationwide).

AMERICAN PIE ANTARCTIC ADVENTURE BEVERLY HILLS BLOODGOOD EIGHT BELOW JASON BIGGS JUST SHOOT ME LAKER GIRL MOON BLOODGOOD ORANGE COUNTY
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