Keisha Castle-Hughes has bounced back from recent personal problems by landing a starring role in a United States sci-fi television pilot.
The Oscar-nominated actress will take the role of Priya in the two-hour pilot for time-travel programme Rewind.
The plot features a team of scientists and military operatives who use technology to go back in time in order to change the future and avoid a terrorist attack.
Castle-Hughes' character is a "behavioral anthropologist who provides analytical context to the project and the missions, and whose knowledge of history extends beyond the boundaries of fact", Hollywood website Deadline.com reported.
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Production on the pilot starts this month. Castle-Hughes' agent, Gail Cowan, said she was confirmed for the role a week ago and had already left for shooting in Canada.
She was "thrilled to pieces" to have landed the pilot, Ms Cowan said. "It has a sterling cast, an excellent production company and Toronto is a superb location."
The pilot will be shopped around to networks but Ms Cowan said "just breaking out of New Zealand and into the US market is a huge bonus".
Castle-Hughes' personal life has made headlines recently.
The Whale Rider star's on-off partner Michael Graves - a part-time hip hop MC she met in 2010 - was charged last month with assaulting her after an Oscars function in Auckland. And in March last year, Castle-Hughes was taken away in handcuffs from a central Auckland nightclub after a fight.