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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - For Sandra Bullock, sweeping up Hollywood awards is something new, but the actress said on Saturday after winning a SAG trophy that she didn't want to be just a "money maker" in any kind of movie, and that her latest film "The Blind Side" gave her that chance.
"If you look at my career, I don't think anyone would have said one day I can see her up here, no one would have predicted it, especially not me," Bullock, who was previously best known for light romantic fare, told reporters.
On Saturday, Bullock, 45, won a Screen Actors Guild Award for best actress in a movie drama, for playing a wealthy family woman who adopts a downtrodden high school football player.
That role in "The Blind Side" has performed at the box office like many of Bullock's movies, staying strong week after week, racking up a total of $231 million in the U.S. and Canada since its November release.
But it has also done something else for Bullock, earning her critical acclaim and a string of awards, including a Golden Globe last week and now a SAG Award.
When a reporter at the SAG Awards on Saturday suggested Bullock stands a good chance at winning her first Oscar, the actress "shushed" him mid-sentence and would not allow him to finish his question.
She also said that at one point, just considering herself an actress was difficult.
"I realized being an actor was something that I never owned up to, in a weird way," Bullock said.
"I would be a hostess or a waitress or a house restorer before I considered myself an actor, because I never thought I was good enough," she said.
But Bullock said she recently took a couple of years away from acting, and learned how to say "no" to mediocre roles, and that she also met her husband, motorcycle maker Jesse James, during that time.
"I was lucky that I wanted to better my work ... and that's a great business to be in that allows you to sort of switch gears, especially when they look at you as the money maker," she said.
Bullock first gained fame with 1994's action movie "Speed," which made $350 million at worldwide box offices, and she has been in a number of other hits since then, including the romantic comedy "Miss Congeniality."
Now, as she embarks on a new stage in her career, Bullock described her life as more than just Hollywood.
"I'm one of those people that knows how lucky she is and every day I get up and I count my blessings, and they're all there under one roof," she said.
Editing by Jill Serjeant