‘New Moon’ Lights The Way to Stardom for Ashley Greene

New Moon star Ashley Greene is still getting a grip on her rise to fame — but with a full slate of upcoming projects, she’s making sure her career extends beyond vampires and werewolves.”Instantly we have this fan base, instantly we have these careers and people know who we are,” says the actress, 22, who likened the rush to “instant happiness. … People now actually care about what projects I’m in.”

Greene was 17 when she moved to Los Angeles from Florida after graduating high school a semester early, and now, after being cast as prescient vampire Alice Cullen in the film adaptation of Stephenie Meyer‘s vampire romance series, Greene’s visibility has skyrocketed. In addition to the release of Twilight: Eclipse June 30, Greene has two additional wrapped films under her belt.

Just like the first two Twilight movies, Eclipse has a different director, David Slade, who Greene says is “definitely different from Catherine (Hardwicke) and Chris (Weitz). He is technically the most specific director that I’ve ever worked with.” Greene says fans of the franchise should expect Slade to “bring a darker element to this film. He seems to kind of specialize in that.”

That darker side includes Alice as well. “In (Twilight), you see that quality about Alice that makes her so lovable is she’s so positive and upbeat. In (New Moon), you see how she takes these uncomfortable situations and she’s sassy and she brings light to a dark scene,” Greene says. “In (Eclipse), you get to see a little bit of a darker side when her family is in danger. You get to see once again that she is an animal and she’s not human.”

As for adding non-vampire films to her résumé, Greene will be at Sundance in January for the premiere of Skateland. “The fact that we’re going to Sundance is a validity factor for an actor doing something you’re passionate about.”

In Skateland, Greene stars as Michelle Birkam, a girl-next-door type who befriends a cool kid with a job at the local skate rink. It’s set in the 1980s, so “I look just like my mother,” she says. “It’s crazy!”

Greene, who filmed Skateland in between Twilight and New Moon, also has wrapped Warrior, now in post-production, which stars Twilight buddy Kellan Lutz. “I got done with Twilight and went independent-crazy,” Greene says.

Indies aside, she just landed the lead in The Apparition, a big-budget Warner Bros. thriller being produced by The Matrix‘s Joel Silver.

“To be the lead in my own box-office film is just another step,” Greene says. “A couple of days before, I probably won’t be able to sleep, but I’m not even nervous about it now. … I’m just like one of those giddy girls who wants to make sure everything is perfect for the first day of school. I’ve already planned a week (before filming begins in Berlin) to turn off my cellphone and just focus.” And with even more screen time in New Moon, which has grossed more than $267.4 million to date, she’s familiar with the craze that comes with being in a box-office sensation.

“It’s so strange, because we spend months on set, and then it’s like, by the way, this is what’s been brewing while we’ve been working,” she says, referring to Twilight‘s fearlessly devoted fan base.

“I’ve gotten asked by people to get a lock of Rob’s hair,” she says of co-star Robert Pattinson, who drives teens and older women alike wild as vampire Edward Cullen. “I’ve even had girls come up to me and ask to smell my hair.

 “I’ve gotten proposals, and I always wonder, what would (people) do if I said yes?”



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