Marisa Tomei says her sudden stardom from "My Cousin Vinny" left her jittery.

After winning an Oscar in 1993 for her second film, she said she felt "a little exposed all of a sudden, like I was just naked out there. I guess I got a little scared."That's why Tomei went against the Hollywood grain and took on quirky roles in smaller films such as "Untamed Heart" and "Unhook the Stars."

"I chose to play a lot of different characters with some young directors and learn as I went along," she said told the New York Daily News.

Tomei, 33, opens Sunday on Broadway in "Wait Until Dark," about a blind housewife harassed by bad guys who include Quentin Tarantino.

"I've got that starry-eyed theater thing going and I almost don't want to say how excited I am because I don't want to jinx it in any way," she said.


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Birthdays For Saturday, April 4

Author-poet Maya Angelou 70

Actor Craig T. Nelson 52

Actor Robert Downey Jr. 33

Actress Nancy McKeon 32