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Brown Sugar: Brianna Brown

In Hollywood it helps to have friends in high places. Just ask Brianna Brown, who, after appearing in the 1999 pilot episode of Freaks and Geeks, hit it off with Leslie Mann—the wife of the show’s creator, Judd Apatow. Today she’s a member of Apatow’s tightly knit comedy mafia: In The 40-Year-Old Virgin, she donned a wig as one of Mann’s friends in a now-infamous bar scene, and in last year’s Knocked Up she appeared as lead character Alison’s friend at a nightclub. “Leslie actually recommended me for Katherine Heigl’s part in Knocked Up, but that didn’t happen, obviously,” Brianna says.

Still, after racking up bit parts in blockbuster comedies, the Minnesota native is finally becoming a name of her own, first starring in this month’s Timber Falls, a Texas Chainsaw Massacre–esque slasher flick in which a young couple on a camping trip is terrorized by deranged locals. Then she’ll appear in The Last Tribe, about a bunch of scientists who become shipwrecked on an island and are hunted by, um, deranged locals. The ironic twist? She loathes the genre. “To be honest, I can’t watch horror movies,” she admits. “I get too scared and scream in the theater. It’s ridiculous.” She may not watch, but we will.

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