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Diane Lane On 'Love' And Dating

In the new romantic comedy, "Must Love Dogs," Diane Lane plays a recently divorced preschool teacher who reluctantly agrees to try Internet dating.

Before she married actor Josh Brolin, Lane tells The Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith, dating was something she avoided "brilliantly."

She says, "Being a single working mom is a wonderful prophylactic to dating. It's like having a moat and you let the draw-bridge down once every couple of months or something. I really had a long list of excuses."

Cyberdating was not even something she considered.

"I was lonely, but I was comfortable," she says. "Being in a relationship is much more challenging, but it's much more rewarding. It's easy to be a saint in a cage. I'm learning. Long story short, no. I have friends who have tried the Internet dating and have happy stories. I'm sure they have nightmare stories they don't talk about. But, yeah, give it a shot."

As it turns out, she experienced one of those nightmare stories that plagued her character Sarah in the film: She answered her father's own personal ad.

"He's dating again," Lane says referring to her widowed father played by Christopher Plummer. "He's out there and it's comparatively a breeze for him, at 71, of course, because he's a guy. We deal with that in the movie, and it is quite funny."

The good news is that the movie has a happy ending. Sarah falls in love with Jake, played by actor John Cusack.

Explaining the film, Lane says, "We're both on the rebound, or whatever that terminology is when you're in recovery from a divorce. We have that in common, both scratching our heads fighting being cynical. And it's hard. You need a lot of humor to fight cynicism, and this movie has it - both, actually. So it's great."

As for working with Cusack, she says, "We'd been waiting decades to work together. Finally. I love John. He brought so much of himself to the character, so much improvisation, very encouraging and very free."

Pointing out that Lane is on almost every magazine cover, Smith refers to an article in Redbook magazine in which she encourages women to embrace their age.

Absolutely," Lane says. "I waited a decade to get here, so I better enjoy it! I love it. I'm a late bloomer, and it's just all good."

The film also features Stockard Channing, Elizabeth Perkins, and Ali Hillis. The film is based on the best-selling book by Claire Cook, and is written and directed by two-time Emmy winner Gary David Goldberg.

Fast Facts About Diane Lane:

  • Born in New York, N.Y., Jan. 22, 1965.
  • By the age of 6, she had begun her showbiz career with a role in "Medea," staged by the famed LaMaMa theater company. Throughout the remainder of the 1970s, Lane amassed numerous stage credits, including a world tour with LaMaMa and various productions for the New York Shakespeare Festival.
  • In 1982, Lane capitalized on her growing fame with the TV- movie "Miss All-American." The following year, she was the lead opposite Matt Dillon in a pair of films adapted from S.E. Hinton novels, "The Outsiders" and "Rumble Fish," both directed by Francis Ford Coppola.
  • In 1984, Lane starred in "The Cotton Club," and she also played the role of a rock diva in Walter Hill's musical, "Streets of Fire."
  • After a hiatus to regroup, Lane landed a role in "Lady Beware" in 1987. The same year, she played a stripper opposite Matt Dillon in the "The Big Town."
  • In 1990, Lane co-starred as the daughter of a man who may have been a Nazi sympathizer in the HBO drama, "Descending Angel." And she made the most of her limited screen time as Paulette Goddard in Richard Attenborough's biopic "Chaplin" in 1992.
  • Television provided a pair of fine roles: The young version of the titular, "Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All," in 1994; and as Stella to Alec Baldwin's Stanley Kowalski in a remake of "A Streetcar Named Desire" in 1995. Lane also starred in "Judge Dredd" and had a role in "Wild Bill," both in 1995, as well.
  • In 1997, Lane slowly rebounded as the mother of a boy with a rare genetic disease that aged him rapidly in "Jack," directed by Francis Ford Coppola. And she played a competent Secret Service agent in the thriller, "Murder at 1600."
  • "A Walk on the Moon" in 1999 allowed her to fully realize her screen potential.
  • She began the millennium co-starring opposite Bill Pullman in the TV remake of "The Virginian" and portrayed Mark Wahlberg's land-bound girlfriend in "The Perfect Storm," also in 2000.
  • In 2001, she was cast in relatively minor roles in films of varying quality, from the terrific such as, "My Dog Skip," to the terrible, like the thriller, "The Glass House."
  • In 2002, Lane took the lead in "Unfaithful." Her performance won her heaps of accolades, including an Academy Award nomination as Best Actress, and marked a new high point in her career.
  • Lane's follow-up was the lighter-weight romantic comedy, "Under the Tuscan Sun," in 2003.
  • Lane will next be seen in "Fierce People," directed by Griffin Dunne. She recently wrapped up production of "Truth, Justice, and the American Way," opposite Ben Affleck and Adrien Brody.