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How to handle the opposite Shreks; World's highest paid actress has learned to just say no to pushy men.

Byline: BY CAMERON DIAZ As told to Brian McIver

GOOD guys, bad guys, rude guys, smooth guys ... Cameron Diaz has met them all and learned the hard way how to deal with them.

After 15 years of playing the dating game, the leggy blonde actress has heard just about every pick-up line and doesn't hesitate to say 'No thanks' if she's not interested.

But it wasn't always like that.The world's highest paid actress was once too embarrassed or polite to tell a man to get lost and used to give false phone numbers to persistent Romeos.

She laughed: 'It's ridiculous what you go through until you build up the courage to say no.

'You wonder what poor person is being woken up in the middle of the night or has 3000 phone messages on their answering machine.

'Or maybe none at all. Maybe the guy just wanted to get the number and had no intention of calling.'

It took a particularly pushy pest with an obnoxious pick-up line to give Cameron the resolve to turn men down.

She recalled: 'There was this guy whowas so brutally direct it was overwhelming.

'He said: 'Nice dress. It would look better onmy bedroom floor'.

'I was like, 'Where did you come from?'That's when I got the courage to say no.You build it up after meeting those guys who you don't want to play those games, so you just say: 'No, sorry'. ' And Cameron, 30, admitted: 'I've got a little bad girl in me.'

She is currently out of circulation because, after a fling with actor Jared Leto, she is romantically involved with Justin Timberlake.

But she enthusiastically praises the experiences involved in the different stages of dating. She said: 'Development is such a fun experience. It is so great and it's constant.

'It never stops from day to day, month to month, year to year.You are constantly discovering something new about how you can get what you want andhow you can work a situation.

'I have gone through every single phase and I am sure I will circle back around again and try it differently.

'I figure life has a lot in store for me. Everyone should go out and have a good time.The best nights for me are the totally unexpected, unplanned, spontaneous ones.'

Cameron also has firm ideas about what she wants from love. She said: 'No tricks, straightforwardness, honesty, mutual respect and adoration.'

Of her relationship with nine-years younger Justin Timberlake, she said: 'The truth is, if I wanted to be married with children right now, I would be.

'Everybody thinks that, just because they might be searching for a person to spend the rest of their life with, I am.

'Why is it every actress in a relationship is expected to get married and have a baby?'

Cameron recently moved from a funky apartment inWest Hollywood into a movie star style house in the Hollywood Hills, although, she confesses, she doesn't feel like a star.

She said: 'I forget a lot of times that people know who I am. Sometimes I get out of a cab forgetting that I have taken off my hat and glasses, and wonder why everyone is staring at me.

'Then I realise that I am famous and remind myself to put the hat and glasses back on. It is so bizarre.'

No longer the clubbing party girl she was in her late teens and early 20s, she still goes out regularly with a group of girlfriends, whose company and friendship she values greatly.

She said: 'All my girlfriends are incredibly important to me. I think you always have to have your girlfriends just lending an ear and offering pretty much just unconditional love and honesty.'

CAMERON revealed how a friend had left a message saying how much fun she had had with her and how lucky she was to have her as a friend.

She said: 'That's the message you save and hold on to because you love that person and it's nice to know they love you, too.

'I've been lucky because I've been able to gain some really great friends along the way, as well as maintain great relationships with friends that I have had since I was five.

'I think you can tell what people's intentions are. There are people I have met in the past few years where I have had to be a little more careful.When yousee their true colours, it is very evident what they want.You lose those people, you leave them behind.'

Cameron,who will always be remembered for the hair-gel scene in There's Something About Mary, is expected to earn more than pounds 25million this year from Shrek 2, which is released on Friday, and the comedy Fun With Dick And Jane.

One of her favourite films is The Sweetest Thing, which features jokes about oral sex and feminine hygiene.

Cameron,who got pounds 10million for the role, said: 'When I read the script, I immediately knew that it was something I really wanted to do.

'These are girls I know.This is meand my girlfriends. This is how girls talk with one another, this is what they do.

'There were things in there that were pretty raunchy andover-the-top, so we tried to tone them down.'

It makes a change for Cameron Diaz to co-star with women. InVery Bad Things, On Any Given Sunday and Gangs of New York, she was almost the only female in the cast.

She said: 'I grew up with a lot of boys in the neighbourhood.

'I was the plain one. I hadno style. I was the tough kid with the comb in my pocket and the feathered hair.

'I probably have a lot of testosterone for a girl and that helps me balance out with men.'

Monster earner

MIKE Myers (Shrek), Cameron Diaz, (Princess Fiona) and Eddie Murphy (the Donkey) were reportedly paid pounds 6million each for Shrek 2, which is out in the UK on Friday.

THOUGH the movie is animated the makers filmed actors as they recorded the lines to make their cartoon characters realistic on screen.

RUPERT Everett, who plays the new film's slimy Prince Charming, took just 12 hours to record his part.

MANY of the songs are sung by the cast.

THE cast recorded their parts throughout the world.

THE voice for Shrek was originally done in Canadian, but Myers changed it to a Scots accent to make it funnier.

SHREK, released in 2001, made more than pounds 500million worldwide.

SHREK 2 cost pounds 50m and took three years to make. It earned pounds 60m on its first weekend in the USA.

THE Shrek stories were created by 82-year-old William Steig, who sold the rights to Dreamworks studio for pounds 350,000.

CAPTION(S):

DEADLY: Puss; in Boots is out to get Shrek in the new movie; DREAM GIRL:; Cameron has it all ... beauty, talent and pots of money; SWEET TALKER: Cameron supplies the voice of Princess Fiona in Shrek 2, with Antonio Banderas who supplies the words for the hit-man cat, and with her boyfriend Justin Timberlake
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jun 28, 2004
Words:1190
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