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No rush ... Aussie actress Claire Van Der Boom

Claire van der Boom is shining in Hollywood

THE international star of Australian actress Claire van der Boom just brightened after being signed to her first major Hollywood project.

The former leading lady of Channel 10 cop drama Rush has scored the role of religious-bent folk singer Billie Tucker in Tough Trade, the first pilot for new cable network Epix and directed by Academy Award winner Gavin Hood.

Now living in Nashville for the production after relocating to Hollywood in February, the actress says being away from home was hard but rewarding.

"The biggest challenge has been being away from home and getting used to the American way to life," she told TV editor Erin McWhirter.

"At heart I've realised in being away that I'm very much an Australian bush baby, LA's a long way from home. On the flip side to that, it's wonderful to be challenged in playing a country Christian folk singer from Nashville."

The signing is the start of what promises to be a big year for the rising talent who has a major guest role in Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks' TV series The Pacific, set in WWII, filmed in Australia and which will premiere on Channel 7 next year.

Van der Boom plays Stella, a Melbourne girl who shares a love affair with US soldier and The Pacific's leading man Robert Leckie (James Badge Dale).

Her character first emerges in episode three with plenty of steamy sex scenes between the couple.

"Doing a love scene is initially very daunting but in my experience everyone on the set is incredibly sensitive to the unnaturalness of the experience," van der Boom said.

"I always have some trepidation towards doing them but if the scene is meaningful to the story then I am open to exploring that reality of our lives."

December 12, 2009
The Daily Telegraph