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OTRC: Zoe Saldana on quitting ballet: part of me was dying inside

Zoe Saldana talks to OnTheRedCarpet.com at a screening for 'Colombiana.' / Zoe Saldana appears on the cover of Summer 2012 cover of Cosmopolitan for Latinas magazine. (OTRC / Cosmopolitan)

Zoe Saldana graced the cover of the debut issue of Cosmopolitan for Latinas and opened up about why she chose acting over ballet.

"I had to quit ballet because it felt like a part of me was dying inside. It takes a lot of courage to face up to things you can't do because we feed ourselves so much denial," Saldana told Cosmopolitan for Latinas in their Summer 2012 issue. "In dance, you use every part of your body except your voice. I wanted to start acting because I wanted to use my voice."

The 33-year-old actress was the first to grace the cover of Cosmopolitan for Latinas and told the magazine that she is very proud of her Latin heritage. Saldana's father was Dominican and her mother is Puerto Rican.

"People think of Latina women as being fiery and fierce, which is usually true," Saldana told Cosmopolitan for Latinas. "But I think the quality that so many Latinas possess is strength. I'm very proud to have Latin blood."

Saldana's first major on-screen role was in the 2000 ballet film, "Center Stage." Saldana has since appeared in movies such as "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl," "Star Trek," "The Losers" and played the main heroine in "Avatar."

The actress also opened up about her ballerina body image in an interview during the premiere of the new Lifetime series, "The Conversation with Amanda de Cadenet."

"I was always slimmer, and once I started dancing... I would dance sometimes five or six hours a day," Saldana told Cadenet. "I would eat - I mean I was living in the Caribbean, there was no such thing in a Latin household as like, having a healthy diet. To your grandmother, it's like, 'Okay, I won't give you plantains but you'll eat either the potatoes or the Yucca, the rice, the cabbage salad I made for you, the chicken and just have a little bit of the pork... Everybody has weight discomforts... I just refuse to let that distort my vision of myself."

Saldana might be comfortable with herself now, but the actress hasn't written off the idea of plastic surgery in the future.

"The same way an old man who's having a mid-life crisis can buy a Porsche and date a 17-year-old, I can buy myself a pair [of boobs] and be the sexiest soccer mom you've ever seen," Saldana said. "It doesn't matter how small or how big or saggy or they're crooked or whatever, just be proud of them and show them - go up and down the stairs without a bra and just let them hang! I think it's so sexy and empowering."

Saldana most recently starred in the action flick, "Colombiana" as a stone-cold assassin. She is also set to reprise her role in the "Star Trek" sequel, which began filming in January.

The actress reportedly split from Bradley Cooper, 37, in late March, after dating for three months. The pair will appear together in the upcoming movie, "The Words," which also stars Olivia Wilde and is slated for release on September 21, 2012.

The actress announced her split from longtime fianc? Keith Britton in November.

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