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“I was surprised at how nice it was to kiss another girl,” says 26-year-old Selma Blair of her on-screen clinch with Buffy star Sarah Michelle Gellar. “It was so nice, so delicate…” The soon-to-be-infamous kiss occurs in Roger Kumble’s Cruel Intentions, a retelling of Les Liaisons Dangereuses set on New York City’s Upper East Side. As the geeky 14-year-old Cecile Caldwell, an aspiring Lolita caught up in a vicious plot and several love triangles, Blair steals the show from co-stars Ryan Phillippe (her on-screen lover) and Reese Witherspoon (Phillippe’s real-life fiancée). Blair took up acting when she moved to New York five years ago, and landed her first advert soon after. Dozens of dreary auditions later — “I couldn’t quite manage that bright smile while talking about tampons” — she moved to Los Angeles and tried out for Cruel Intentions, landing her first significant movie part (small roles in the lame In & Out and the dire Can’t Hardly Wait notwithstanding). Next, she’ll play a jaded chemistry student who becomes a porn star in Kris Isaacson’s Down To You. “I see her as a cross between Kristin Scott Thomas and Willy Wonka,” she reveals. “And I’m not playing her like some uptight librarian in an Adam Ant video.” Selma Blair: she stands and delivers.

The Face Selma Blair Profile June 2000

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