Isla Fisher

1993 Collegian

Isla-Fisher-Our-Town-1993
Isla Fisher in MLC production of Our Town

The first day they met, Isla Fisher told MLC Head of Theatre Arts, Jodee Lambert, she intended to be a movie star.

"Isla was always extremely focussed and determined and already had an agent when I started teaching her in Year 10," Jodee recalls.

"She could sing, dance and act. She was a lovely girl, very friendly and popular."

Isla played 'Liza' in the College's 1991 production of Little Shop of Horrors. She was cast as the lead in the 1993 production of Our Town, but film commitments meant she had to settle for smaller parts.

She also led a group selected to perform at His Majesty's Theatre as part of a Youth Theatre Festival.

"Isla was playing an older woman and had to hold a champagne glass and look stylish. People commented on how well she did it," Jodee said.

These days, Isla has fulfilled her own prediction and is riding high on the success of the movie The Great Gatsby, playing the role of 'Myrtle'.

This follows roles in Hollywood films such as Scooby-Doo, Wedding Crashers and Confessions of a Shopaholic.

Isla first found fame in Australia in the television series Home and Away. She wrote two teen novels with her novelist Mum and they are now working on a script for a thriller.

Isla is married to fellow actor Sacha Baron Cohen and has two daughters.

The determination she showed at MLC has helped Isla survive Hollywood. She told Cosmopolitan UK about being fired by her LA agent after failing to get any roles and Sacha's agent subsequently refusing to represent her.

"It was the only favour I'd ever asked and I was like, 'OK...great'. But it spurred me on."

On MLC: Isla says - I remember when Mrs Lambert taught us a game called 'space jump' which was the first time I learned how to improvise in character (a skill that saved many a performance during my career). I later studied clown at Jacques le Coq in Paris which helped me to perfect it.

But my favorite memory was art class with Mr Garde. Sitting on high chairs looking out over Freshwater Bay, he encouraged us to dream and create and he was so passionate and encouraging in every medium from sculpting to oils. Because of him I have remained a perpetual student of art and remained in love with art history and being creative ever since.