Jamie Foxx 'Pursued' Cameron Diaz to Come Out of Retirement and Make Netflix's Back in Action

·2 min read
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 16: Jamie Foxx and Cameron Diaz attend a photocall for "Annie" at Corinthia Hotel London on December 16, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 16: Jamie Foxx and Cameron Diaz attend a photocall for "Annie" at Corinthia Hotel London on December 16, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/WireImage)

David M. Benett/WireImage

It takes an Oscar-winning actor to convince Cameron Diaz to come out of retirement.

As the 49-year-old actress revealed on Instagram June 29, she's making her first movie in nearly a decade, costarring with Jamie Foxx in the upcoming Netflix action-comedy Back in Action.

In the new issue of PEOPLE, a film source reveals Foxx, 54, was instrumental in getting the Charlie's Angels star to make another movie. "When this project came along and she was pursued by Jamie Foxx, who she has known and worked with for years, she decided to go for it," says the source.

Diaz had stepped away from the spotlight after making the 2014 remake of the classical musical Annie in order to focus on "parts of my life that I wasn't touching," as she put it in an interview last year.

And she did just that: In the past eight years, she wed Good Charlotte rocker Benji Madden, 43, co-authored the healthy-living tome The Longevity Book, launched a wine brand, Avaline, and welcomed daughter Raddix via surrogate in 2019. Since then, motherhood has been her top priority. "To have to be on a movie set that takes 14 hours, 16 hours, of my time away from her —I just couldn't," she said in a Sirius XM interview just last year.

1999--Actors Cameron Diaz and Jamie Foxx, stars of the new film by director Oliver Stone, Any Given Sunday pose at the film's premiere December 16 in Los Angeles. Diaz portrays football team owner Christina Pagniacci and Foxx portrays Willie Beaman, a third-string quarterback in the film about the world of professional football, which also stars Al Pacino and Dennis Quaid. FSP
1999--Actors Cameron Diaz and Jamie Foxx, stars of the new film by director Oliver Stone, Any Given Sunday pose at the film's premiere December 16 in Los Angeles. Diaz portrays football team owner Christina Pagniacci and Foxx portrays Willie Beaman, a third-string quarterback in the film about the world of professional football, which also stars Al Pacino and Dennis Quaid. FSP

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So not just any project could tempt her away from her home life. The fact that she'd be working with Foxx—whom she's known for more than two decades after first costarring in the 1999 drama Any Given Sunday—was a major draw. "She's comfortable with Jamie and always has been," says another insider. Indeed, in her June 29 Instagram post, she wrote to Foxx "only you could get me back in action."

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As PEOPLE previously reported, Madden also played a part in getting her to take the role. "He encouraged her to unretire," according to an insider. Another Diaz source says the four-time Golden Globe nominee "was ready to act again. She just needed a push. Benji has always been very supportive of Cameron in what she wants to do, especially in her career."

Just don't expect to see her back as a full-time actress. "She doesn't want acting to overtake her life now like it did before," says the film source, who adds that Back in Action, which has no set release date, was the right movie with the right costar at the right time. "All the parts fit into place."