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Once again, though, her public image and private self weren't matching up.
"You're famous and doing all these magazines and you're in everyone's living room every week but you work 15-hour days, seven days a week, nine months a year and you have no life."By this stage she was married to a younger Canadian actor, Jeff Colt. Disparity in their careers opened up cracks in the relationship and they divorced after five increasingly difficult years.
Her Glaswegian father, a drama teacher, and her Dutch-born mother divorced when she was a baby. But she didn't abandon dance altogether and, just shy of 15 years old, found herself at a massive open casting call for Phantom of the Opera. "Suddenly I had left home, I was working and being paid," she says. And they were sane and adult and taking care of me." It was the beginning of a pattern that has seen her repeatedly winning independence while searching for support.
She now evenly describes her childhood as "difficult". In modern fairy-tale fashion, an agent spotted her and guided her towards modelling.
And now the great man is directing her theatre debut Catapulted to stardom in the mid-Nineties in Wes Craven's blood-and-guts-in-high-school trilogy Scream, Neve (pronounced "Nev") was everywhere.
Men's magazines voted her one of the sexiest women alive and everyone wanted a slice of her. More ambitious actors might chafe at this, but Campbell is nothing but relieved. She and her partner, the actor John Light, have recently returned from a Christmas spent ricocheting around her native Canada, catching up with her far-flung family.
It won the Golden Globe for best drama in its first season and made the names of everyone on it, including Jennifer Love Hewitt and Matthew Fox, now resident hunk on Lost.
But instead of cruising through a theatrical Hollywood retread such as the misbegotten When Harry Met Sally, she has chosen the penultimate play by Arthur Miller."It's a political satire," she announces crisply, "about an undefined South American country and the crucifixion of a man whom people believe could possibly be holy.And in the second one she wound up in a small Northern California hotel with a bunch of virtual unknowns on the least likely of projects.Miramax's postmodern slasher comedy was written in a weekend, cost m, was called Scream and grossed (I used the term advisedly) 3m. "We made jokes - hey, wouldn't it be funny if this movie works and next Halloween people are wearing the costume?I knew it would be much smarter to start on a more delicate level."Actually, "start" isn't strictly accurate. Like many other girls who'd studied ballet from the age of six, she dreamed of ballet school.At nine she auditioned with 2,000 others for Canada's prestigious National Ballet School and, alongside six others, got in.
She won't discuss it, other than to say that they married far too young.