CBS News - The early show - March 31, 2004

 Secrets, Love And Julia Stiles 

Barely 23 years old, Julia Stiles is already a 10-year acting veteran with credits that include Save The Last Dance, State And Main and Mona Lisa Smile.

In her latest film, the romantic comedy The Prince & Me, she plays a coed who falls in love with a fellow student who has a secret identity.

In The Prince & Me, Paige (Stiles) is a student from Wisconsin who is pursuing her dream of becoming a doctor. Meanwhile, Edward (played by Luke Mably), the Crown Prince of Denmark, is trying to escape the life of royalty. So, Edwards poses as "Eddie," a college student. As a love relationship develops between Paige and Edward, the aspiring doctor must decide what road to take -- become a princess or have a career in medicine.

Stiles tells The Early Show co-anchor Hannah Storm her character always wanted to be independent and had been "focused on her own life path. I think, in a way, she was scared to open herself up to falling in love. But she's blindsided by this guy who is charming and lovely."

And so she ends up having to make a choice between her career and marrying the man of her dreams. She notes, "The thing that I think is so interesting about the movie is that she decides to put her heart in his hands. And she goes off to Denmark to find him. And she realizes, when she gets there, that she won't have a voice or an identity. So she has to figure out how she can live her own life, but also share it with him. I think that's an issue for a lot of women who want to have their own identity and, also, have fun and be in love."

The film used real jewelry. Stiles notes, "They had to have bodyguards following me around."

But it wasn't until the proposal from the prince, holding real diamonds, that she actually hyperventilated. She says, "Not only the diamonds, but it was more about the idea of a man you're in love with getting down on his hands and knees and saying he wants to spend the rest of his life with you. I became quite a romantic."

Off screen, the actress attends Columbia University in New York City as an English major and says her student world and career world are working just fine. She says, "I hope to graduate in a year. I have two semesters left."

Originally published at CBS - Posted on March 31, 2004