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Dakota Fanning may have started out as a child star earning parts in various blockbuster films like Man on Fire with Denzel Washington and War of the Worlds with Tom Cruise, but she’s all grown up and looking amazing on the cover of Town and Country magazine.

On the cover, we get up close and personal with the 20-year-old as she shows off her piercing blue eyes behind heavy eyeliner and platinum blonde bangs, all while wearing a leather collared and blue top with rhinestone embellishment. The other photos show Dakota in a lot of studded and embellished mod-inspired dresses, showing off her long legs in opaque stockings.

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Inside, she discusses the first stages of acting, as well as how she’s been able to maintain such a successful career over the years. At just five years old, Dakota and her mother made a decision to move to L.A. from their house in Georgia to pursue an acting career full-time. Dakota notes that although she was very young, the conversation and decision was just as much hers as it was her mother’s.

“Even before I started working—when I was two, three, four, five—I was an exceptionally mature child. I just was. And my mom and I were able to have conversations like, ‘Do you want to go to California and go to auditions for commercials and TV shows? Is that something you want to do?’ And I was like, ‘Yeah, let’s give it a try.'”

One thing that may have separated Dakota from other kids and child stars, she says, is that she was particularly mature for her age. And unlike many child stars who have unfortunately been stuck in their immature roles, the actress has been able to create a career for herself. As a young adult, she has starred in films such as The Secret Life of Bees and the vampire phenomenon, Twilight.

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Dakota also talks about her personal life and how she maintains it away from the spotlight. It may seem hard for other child stars to do, but:

“I’m just never going to parade my personal life,” she says. “If you choose to not do it, it’s not hard to not do it.”

Dakota and her little sister, Elle Fanning, who has also started to make a name for herself in fashion and in film, have become an example of how to conduct themselves as young actresses. She recognizes that they might be a little unconventional to the Hollywood scene, but it works for them.

Check out more photos from Dakota Fanning’s feature below.

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PHOTO CREDIT & SOURCE: Town & Country 

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