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    Is Katherine Heigl the Next Angelina Jolie?

    Katherine Heigl, Angelina Jolie, Salt GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images; Andrew Schwartz/Sony Pictures

    Step aside, Angelina Jolie.

    Katherine Heigl is moving in on your whoop-ass action-star territory...

    Ms. Heigl stars in the upcoming One for the Money, the big-screen adaptation of the first novel in Janet Evanovich's best-selling Stephanie Plum series about a female bounty hunter.

    "It was super exciting and fun," the former Grey's Anatomy star told me yesterday at the launch of the Jason Debus Heigl Foundation's new Compassion Revolution program to reduce pet overpopulation. "We had a pretty good time down there in Pittsburgh. I got to wield some big boots and hold guns and be tough—or sort of try to be."

    John Leguizamo, who plays a boxing manager in the flick, recently revealed that Heigl beats him up in the movie. "I don't think I kicked his ass," Heigl said, laughing. "I think he's being dramatic. I think I just shoved him."

    With 16 Stephanie Plum novels published since 1995, Heigl hopes One for the Money is just the beginning of her big-screen life as the raven-haired Ms. Plum. It's set for a July 8 release. "The idea is that it will turn into a franchise," she said.

    Up next for Heigl is Life As We Know It, a romantic comedy costarring Josh Duhamel and directed by Greg Berlanti out Oct. 8 that she coexecutive produced, too. Getting Duhamel to strip down to nothing but a pair of boxer briefs in posters for the movie wasn't too hard. Heigl cracked, "That kid will take it off for nothing."

    Now it's time to hear from you: Heigl as action star? Discuss in the comments below.

    ________

    Keep up with your favorite stars this weekend by following @marcmalkin and @brettmalec on Twitter.

    What else is coming to a movie theater near you? Find out in our Totally New Releases photo gallery.

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