March 24, 2005
"Don’t call us. We’ll call you." Screen legend Faye Dunaway utters those six words every week on the WB reality series "The Starlet" to inform an aspiring actress that she’s been eliminated from the competition.
After four episodes, 23-year-old Lauren Alonzo of Scottsdale heard those dreaded words at the end of Tuesday’s episode.
Alonzo was the sixth actress to be booted off the show, which was filmed in December in Los Angeles. The winner will get a role on the WB drama "One Tree Hill," a one-year management contract and a talent deal with The WB.
"Doing this show is the first major step that I’ve made in pursuing my dream," says Alonzo, a bartender at Scottsdale nightclub Axis/Radius. "I think that just doing it was a big enough step for me to prove to myself that I can do this."
In the first few episodes, the wannabe starlets performed a lesbian love scene, acted out a scene from "Smallville" and auditioned for a hair commercial in a bikini.
In each episode, the women — the competition started with 10 actresses — face Dunaway, actress Vivica A. Fox and casting director Joseph Middleton, who critique their work.
"Overall, my reviews weren’t that terrible, but I’ve seen it with the other girls and theirs were pretty bad," Alonzo says. "But that’s their job and that’s what they’re there to do, and it’s TV.’’
According to the judges comments, Alonzo dropped the ball when the actresses re-created a scene from the teen movie "A Cinderella Story" during the most recent episode. Middleton told her, "You have a great personality. You have a great body. But you can’t act." Ouch.
Alonzo, who teared up when she was voted off, calls the criticism "politics" and a "part of the show."
"Did I expect to go home before the other girls,’’ she says. "No, but that’s part of acting . . . Of course it’s going to hurt a little bit."
The Scottsdale resident, an ASU communications major, says her favorite judge was Dunaway.
"She would get totally catty," she says. "But she gave me the best compliment. She told me I was a good actress."
On one episode, Alonzo topped the other contestants in an acting challenge. Her reward? She got to walk the red carpet of the "Ocean’s Twelve" premiere with "Days of Our Lives" actor Matt Cedeno.
"That was one of the best nights of my life," she says. "It was absolutely amazing. It reaffirmed that this is what I want to do and this is how I want it to be.
‘‘Some of the girls said that they probably wouldn’t have liked it, but I loved it."
Since the show began airing, Alonzo, who plans to pursue a career in acting, says she’s been getting recognized at Axis/Radius.
"The people are just so cute," she says. "They’re like, ‘I want you to win!’ "