Why the star of ''Almost Famous'' is already famous

By Tricia Johnson
December 23, 2000 at 05:00 AM EST

Moment of Arrival A delicately textured performance as wild child Penny Lane in Almost Famous has moviegoers marveling over Goldie Hawn being her relation.
How She Got the Part When Famous director Cameron Crowe failed to land Go‘s Sarah Polley for the project, Hudson — originally cast to play Patrick Fugit’s older sister — convinced Crowe to give her a crack at the lead. He gave her an audition and she nailed it. ”I couldn’t have asked for a better coming-out party,” says Hudson.
Before She Was A Groupie She played a date-from-hell victim in 200 Cigarettes and a coed in the teen thriller Gossip. She was also seen in Dr. T and the Women.
What Fame Has Brought ”I never expected to be a part of that kind of film so early (in my career),” says Hudson. Now many ”more opportunities have arisen, and it’s amazing. I’m getting to do what I’ve always wanted to do.”
What’s Next The native Angeleno is mastering an English accent to play an army officer’s fiancee in the war drama The Four Feathers, opposite Heath Ledger.