ByDania Lerman, writer at Creators.co
Dania Lerman

There was Britney and Justin, wholesome Lindsay Lohan, and oh-so-many boy bands that melted our heart.

In addition to the legacy of these 00s icons, there's one VERY special lady who touched our preteen hearts just as dearly: the fierce and lovely Zoe Saldana.

Prior to her reign as Queen of Epic High Concept - Avatar, Star Trek, Guardians of the Galaxy, Book of Life - she was an underrated, but nonetheless shining star in our boy-crazed world of plastic tattoo chokers and Baby-Gs. Here's why:

1) She was the TRUE star of Center Stage and everyone knows it.

Do I even need to say "attitude"? She was the only one to talk back to mega-douchebag Sandy Cohen - I mean... Jonathon - and still managed to steal the show. Jode's so gorgeous we (still) want to cry, but Eva makes the movie and you totally know it.

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2) She was in a Chick Flick movie with pre-Spiderman Kirsten Dunst

So she wasn't exactly the star, but she acted alongside Kirsten Dunst in the age of Bring It On and Drop Dead Gorgeous... need I say more?

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3) Crossroads. Period.

Beyond stating the obvious that she road-tripped with Britney Spears - could you get more 2002? - I'd like to remind you that she gave Britney some serious girl talk on "doing it" for the first time.

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4) Drumline, 2002: She stole Nick Cannon's heart.

...wearing that jumpsuit.

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5) She SLAPPED Jack Sparrow.

Maybe if he'd taken some time to watch Center Stage, he'd know not to piss her off.

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6) She grew with us.

A true Millennial, she left behind the pom-poms and Soffe shorts for smartphones and digital effects... moving forward, before we know it, it'll be 2016 and she'll be back in Pandora for more Avatar action...

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Here's to you, girl! Love you then, now, forever.

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