Forlani made eight films in four years before being chosen for the plum female lead opposite Brad Pitt and Anthony Hopkins in "Meet Joe Black" (1998). Her first role of note in a Hollywood film came in 1994's "Police Academy 7: Mission to Moscow" in which she played an interpreter for the visiting cops. She went on to play Brandi, the girlfriend to Jeremy London who ditches plans to travel with him in order to appear on a TV dating show in Kevin Smith's uneven "Mallrats" (1995) and had a small but memorable role as Sean Connery's angry daughter in "The Rock" (1996). Julian Schnabel cast the rising star as the waitress-girlfriend of the titular artist in his biopic "Basquiat" (1996) and she subsequently offered a strong turn as the wrist-slashing girlfriend of beat poet Neal Cassady in "The Last Time I Committed Suicide" (1997). The busy actress also co-starred with Rob Morrow and Jake Weber in the romantic drama "Into My Heart/Elements" (1998).
A self-confessed artist with principle, Forlani has been selective in her roles and has not been afraid to walk away from a project. She was fired from the action thriller "Deep Rising" after she refused to make adjustments in her character development to suit director Stephen Sommers' vision. On the small screen, she played a woman who catches the eye of the future president in "JFK: Reckless Youth" (ABC, 1993), and could be seen briefly as a woman in a restaurant in Laura Dern's directorial debut, "The Gift", a short film that aired on Showtime in 1994. Additionally. Forlani portrayed a Victorian era aristocrat who falls for a commoner in the period piece "Basil" (Romance Classics, 1998).
After a small but memorable role in "Mystery Men" (1999), she teamed with Freddie Prinze Jr. for the romantic comedy "Boys and Girls" (2000) and went blonde to co-star in the drama "Anti-Trust" (2001). Forlani toiled in smaller projects for a while, resurfacing in the Polish brothers' art house hit "Northfork" (2003) as one of the townspeople who are about to see their hometown flooded by the arrival of a hydroelectric dam. The actress also made for a comely sidekick/love interest for Jackie Chan in the English language Hong Kong actioner "The Medallion" (2003), and played the wife of iconic golf champion Bobby Jones (Jim Caviezel) in "Bobby Jones, Stroke of Genius" (2004). She next appeared in the brutally violent sports drama, "Green Street Hooligans" (2005), playing the sister of an expelled Harvard student (Elijah Woods) who flees to her home in England and is introduced to the underground world of football hooliganism by her brother-in-law (Charlie Hunnam).