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Better known perhaps as Jim Carrey’s other half these days, Lauren Holly still likes to keep busy on camera. The star of Dumb and Dumber and TV’s Picket Fences, is now keeping her head above the clouds – literally. In her new movie Turbulence, Holly is a flight attendant trying to keep psycho Ray Liotta at bay, while attempting to land an out-of-control plane. In this interview from the set of hubbie Carrey’s next film, the actress talks to Paul Fischer.

Lauren Holly is perfectly aware that she can now afford to pick and choose the movies she does. "I’m not desperate for the money or anything", the 34-year old actress says smilingly, a pointed reference to her liaison with that $20 million guy, Jim Carrey. Talking on the set of Carrey’s The Truman Show*, directed by Australia’s own Peter Weir, Holly is full of praise for the Aussie director and his working relationship with Carrey. "They’re like two peas in a pod. They’d been shooting for 6 or 7 weeks and they both look younger to me." Holly was persuaded by Weir "to do a small, silly thing in this movie. So here I am, supposedly on vacation, working."

"I’m not desperate for the money or anything," Lauren Holly

The former star of the multi-award winning Picket Fences was glad that the show ended when it did. "For me, because I’d been so busy doing other things, it really ended some months earlier anyway, and so my character had less to do, and I WASN’T in a lot of episodes in the last year."

"They’re like two peas in a pod." director Peter Weir on Lauren Holly and Jim Carrey

One of the things that kept her busy was a new movie, a hair raising action flick called Turbulence. In the movie, Holly plays a flight attendant on a half empty plane which is transporting a soon-to-be-executed serial killer (Ray Liotta), as well as another dangerous criminal. When ultimately all are left are Holly and Liotta, a battle of wills ensues as the former not only has to survive a confrontation with Liotta, but has to land the plane herself. It’s as different from Holly’s previous work as you can get and it was a blast to do.

"I was very keen to do an action movie and the chance to work with Ray Liotta." Lauren Holly on Turbulence

"I was very keen to do an action movie and the chance to work with Ray Liotta. Also, to be honest, I felt this was a big exit for me from Picket Fences." In fact, to sweeten the deal, Holly was offered a three-picture deal, "so suddenly I was rich and having movies built around me."

It was a physically grueling film to make, and she recalls going home bruised a lot. "After the first day of shooting, my brother became quite nauseous when he saw the bruises right up and down my legs." The tabloid press had a field day on this, suggesting that it was husband Jim Carrey responsible for Holly’s bruising. "It was such a joke", the actress exclaims, still reeling from the experience of dealing with the tabloid claims.

"I certainly wouldn’t want anyone to think that Jim was a monster." Lauren Holly on rumours about bruises after first day shooting Turbulence

"I’m a lot better now but at the time I just couldn’t believe it." An example she gives, is a publicist calling her up claiming that one such publication was planning to run a story claiming she called police emergency [911] declaring she was being beaten. But Holly and Carrey fought back. "We said we’d sue them if they don’t have a copy of the 911 call, knowing of course there was no such call." The story was not published. "After the whole O.J. thing, I wouldn’t want anyone to think that I was a victim in that way, and I certainly wouldn’t want anyone to think that Jim was a monster." The real ‘monster’ during production of Turbulence was Ray Liotta’s psychopathic character. "The good thing about working with Ray, is that he’s so convincing that he just kinda scares you," thus making it easy to get into character, in this part-disaster, part-thriller film.

"It’s funny how life kinda throws things at you." Lauren Holly on being an actress

Holly does not have the kind of background suggesting that there was an actor growing inside her. Her father is a teacher and her mother an academic, while Holly herself studied English literature at university. "I should have been a teacher, obviously, and what’s so odd about it, is that my parents aren’t surprised at it at all. I’m not quite sure why I ended up doing this; it’s funny how life kinda throws things at you."

* The Truman Show is due out in October 1997

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Lauren Holly in Turbulence

Co-star Ray Liotta

Hubby Jim Carrey

See Reviews of Turbulence

Scenes from Turbulence

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