In the African-American coming-of-age dramedy The Brothers (opening March 23), Angel vamp Julie Benz represents the great white hope — operative word: white — of comedian Bill Bellamy. "His character decides to go out with a white woman because he thinks they'll be different than black women," she tells TV Guide Online, chuckling. "Boy, is he wrong! The karate instructor that I play is really cool and easy-going, but don't cross her. That's all I can say."

Although in the movie and on Angel, the femme fatale wields fists of fury, she's no Michelle Yeoh — and probably never will be. "I signed up for karate once, but I only went to three classes," she admits. "I have a big ego, and you had to bow to people who were higher belts than you [in other words, more experienced martial artists].

"When this little kid from the class before mine came up to me and went, 'I have a higher belt than you — you have to bow to me,'" she continues, "I was like, 'You know what? Shut up.' Then I had to stop going."

Nonetheless, the blonde bombshell is certain that she could explode ? should she ever find herself in a dire enough situation. "I've never hit anybody in my life," she muses, "but I think I have quite a big survival streak, so I could probably throw a punch if I was ever attacked.

"Still," she adds, "I hope it never happens."