Colleen Survives Hollywood

052401, Survivor Colleen Haskell, MGS
"What a dream."

That's what Colleen Haskell, one of the original Survivor contestants, and co-star with Rob Schneider in a major Hollywood comedy, said about her recent film making experience.

In "The Animal," Haskell plays a volunteer in an animal shelter who falls for a police evidence clerk (Schneider) who has some rather strange animalistic tendencies.

She spoke with The Early Show's co-anchor Jane Clayson about her time in Tinsel Town.

Haskell, whose fresh-faced good looks and friendly attitude made her the "cutie pie" in the original Survivor show, had planned to resume her studies in graphic design after the television game show ended its run.

But, as she told Clayson: "You know, after Survivor, things kind of just happened with people asking you to do different things or go on an audition. I just went and auditioned this as a chance to meet Rob Schneider and maybe Adam Sandler."

With no acting experience whatsoever, (she had worked in scene shops and designed sets in school) Haskell said she wasn't nervous.

"You know Rob was a pretty good coach. He kind of held my hand and showed me around, introduced me to people, made me feel comfortable," she said.

Haskell's first movie role is not a small one - she's on the screen for 40 minutes.

Clayson informed Haskell that Schneider, who had appeared on The Early Show Wednesday, had lots of nice things to say about his co-star, including the fact that he called her "the next Meg Ryan."

And while she may be getting rave reviews from her film partner, Haskell admitted she really was a novice when it came to movie making.

"I packed my lunch on the first day, I was ready to go." She didn't know they had catering trucks on movie sets. But she was a quick study.

"I said this is great - steak and potatoes for lunch every day," Haskell said.

Unfortunately there was a down side - a little weight gain perhaps?

She explained, "About a month later, when the director of photography is telling me, Colleen, your face is different in every scene - you're up and down. I had to make my peace with the catering truck."

Clayson wanted to know whether Haskell saw a future for herself in the movies.

"Do I see a future in films? A year ago, 'did I see a future in advertising' was the question I was asking myself. I can't predict where I'm going. As soon as it stops being fun, I'm done. Right now it's hard work, but it's great when you work hard on something and three months later, you get to see a movie out of it."

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