Andie MacDowell, in the new film The Muse, plays the wife of a Hollywood writer (Albert Brooks), who enlists the help of a mythical muse (Sharon Stone) for creative inspiration. CBS News' Thalia Assuras reports.
For MacDowell, the theme of the movie (which was also directed and co-written by Brooks) is "that anyone can be important or in an important position."
When Brooks phoned her to ask her to take the role in The Muse, MacDowell was on vacation at the beach, doing the dishes.
"Getting the call from Albert was one of those rare gifts you dream about," she says. "You put your faith in someone who is as talented as him and take advantage of the rare chance of working with someone like him."
"I love his sense of humor. He's a very intelligent man....He's a great writer and a wonderful comedian," she adds.
Working with Stone was interesting, and more importantly "a lot of fun," MacDowell says.
"We had a real good time on the set, but that's what working with Albert Brooks is all about," she adds.
Her own muses, she says, are members of her family and her longtime manager. Ask her about her priorities and MacDowell, 41, places her family at the top of her list. "A career is great but not everything," she says.
She has three children: son Justin, 13, who, she says, is still her baby ("even though he is so big, he has size 10 feet, and he's going to be taller than me any day now") and two daughters, Rainey, 9 and Sarah Margaret, 4.
MacDowell and her husband of 13 years recently separated, and she moved from Montana to Asheville, N.C., where she spent a lot of time when she was a child.
"These are my roots," she explains. "It's where I grew up. It's where I feel at home and the most comfortable."
While The Muse certainly takes many jabs at Hollywood, MacDowell says that's a reflection of Brooks' viewpoint and not her own.
"It's not that I have anything against Hollywood," she explains. "It's just not the place for me. I like small towns. And I've moved back to be near my sisters. I adore my family and father. I want to be with them. Life is short."
MacDowell says she is not a movie star as most people perceive a movie star. "Believe me, it is always utter and complete chaos," she says. "And like any other working mother, when I leave the house, I'm pretending that everything is together."
At any given time, she explains, "something is wrong with the plumbing. The kids broke a window. I'm repairing that. I have this house to renovate. I have deadlines. I'm trying to get [things] done. And I have three kids going in three different directions."
Rose Anderson MacDowell Qualley (her real name) first came to public notice as a model in the early 1980s. She quickly moved on to films, making her big screen debut in 1984 in Greystoke: The Legen of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes.
It wasn't an auspicious beginning; unhappy with MacDowell's Southern accent, the studio re-recorded her lines with actress Glenn Close.
But MacDowell bounced back with St. Elmo's Fire (1985), and the low-budget feature sex lies and videotape (1989) made her a big name. Her other film credits include Michael (1996), Unstrung Heroes (1995), Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994), Groundhog Day (1993), Short Cuts (1993), The Player (1992), and Green Card (1990).
To see an interview with Sharon Stone, see "The Goddess Plays The Muse"
To see an interview with Albert Brooks, see "Brooks Muses On The Muse."
Visit the official Web site for The Muse.