Cameron Diaz is to come out of acting retirement to star in a new movie, the suitably-titled Back in Action, alongside Jamie Foxx.
Actor and musician Foxx teased the announcement on social media, releasing a phone call between himself and Diaz.
It comes eight years after the pair appeared together in what became Diaz’s last film – a 2014 remake of Annie, in which she played Miss Hannigan.
Diaz, 49, said she was “so anxious” but “excited” about returning.
During the same phone call, Foxx, who won an Oscar for his 2004 portrayal of US soul singer Ray Charles, connected Diaz with the Super Bowl-winning Tom Brady in order to offer some advice about launching a big-time comeback.
Cameron I hope you aren’t mad I recorded this, but no turning back now. Had to call in the GOAT to bring back another GOAT. @CameronDiaz and I are BACK IN ACTION – our new movie with @NetflixFilm. Production starting later this year!! 🦊🐐 pic.twitter.com/vyaGrUmbWb— Jamie Foxx (@iamjamiefoxx) June 29, 2022
“I was talking to Jamie and he said you need a few tips on how to un-retire,” said Brady, who returned to the NFL in March 2022, just six weeks after having announced his departure.
“I’m relatively successful at un-retiring,” he said.
“Honestly, exactly what I needed,” replied Diaz.
Foxx noted in the written caption to his post how he had had to employ the help of “another Goat” [greatest of all-time] to help Diaz to return.
“Cameron I hope you aren’t mad I recorded this, but no turning back now,” he declared.
What was Diaz in and why did she retire?
Diaz made her breakthrough in the 1994 comedy The Mask opposite Jim Carrey, and she went on to become one of Hollywood’s biggest stars.
She was known for her Golden Globe-nominated performance in Ben Stiller’s rom-com There’s Something About Mary, as well as films like Charlie’s Angels and The Holiday.
She also provided the voice for Princess Fiona in the animated classic Shrek, and was nominated for a Bafta for best supporting actress for Being John Malkovich.
The final movie appearance of her 20-year career, which also included the critically acclaimed Gangs of New York and Vanilla Sky, came in the 2014 film adaptation of the musical Annie.
She formally confirmed her retirement from acting in 2018, but had previously indicated that she was taking a step back.
Speaking at an event run by her friend Gwyneth Paltrow, Diaz said: “I just went, ‘I can’t really say who I am to myself.’ Which is a hard thing to face up to. I felt the need to make myself whole.”
However, she also did not rule out returning one day.
After walking away from Hollywood, Diaz said she had found “peace”.
In another conversation with Paltrow, this time on the Sliding Doors star’s wellness podcast, Diaz said: “I got a peace in my soul, because I finally was taking care of myself.
“It’s a strange thing to say, I know a lot of people won’t understand it, I know you understand it, but it’s so intense to work at that level and be that public and put yourself out there.”
She added: “There’s a lot of energy coming at you at all times when you’re really visible as an actor and doing press and putting yourself out there.”
What has she been doing for the past eight years?
In December 2019, Diaz and her husband, Good Charlotte guitarist Benji Madden, welcomed a daughter via surrogate.
The star, who had previously released a best-selling health book while still working as actor, also took the time out to invest in health and biotech startups.
In 2016, she released a second book, called The Longevity Book: The Science of Aging, the Biology of Strength, and the Privilege of Time.
Diaz was a keynote speaker at a food festival and later launched her own organic wine brand.
While still in retirement, she appeared briefly in a reboot of Charlie’s Angels, written and directed by Elizabeth Banks.
Still photographs of Diaz and other stars of previous iterations of Charlie’s Angels were seen on a screen in the Townsend Agency’s Los Angeles office in the 2019 reboot.
Earlier this year, she appeared as a guest judge on the opening episode of season seven of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars.
What do we know about her forthcoming film?
Back in Action will start production later this year and will be an action comedy, Netflix confirmed, but said the storyline is “being kept under wraps”.
The movie will be directed and co-written by Horrible Bosses creator Seth Gordon, alongside Brendan O’Brien.
The project will re-unite Diaz and Foxx, who worked together on the 1999 sporting drama Any Given Sunday, as well as the aforementioned Annie.
It’s the latest in a string of original Netflix films starring big names, as the streaming service attempts to slow the loss of subscribers
Project Power, which also stars Jamie Foxx, attracted 75 million viewers upon release in 2020. However, subscribers only needed to watch two minutes of the film to count as a viewer.
Other Netflix original films to star major Hollywood names include Bird Box (starring Sandra Bullock), Red Notice (Dwayne Johnson), Don’t Look Up (Leonardo DiCaprio) and the forthcoming Ryan Gosling film The Gray Man.