Oh, sure, Elizabeth Hurey has played a number of more dramatic roles over the years, but let’s face it: are we ever going to really forget the fact that the Brit actress was the movies’ sexiest version of the Devil ever in Bedazzled? Or, let's not forget that she was the woman who got Austin Powers — that International Man Of Mystery — to settle down (at least until the opening sequence of his second film)?
Speaking of her role as Vanessa Kensington in Austin Powers, here's what Elizabeth Hurley had to say to Spirit and Flesh Mag:
“I loved playing Vanessa Kensington in Austin Powers. My son adores the movie and knows all my lines. I adored Mike Meyers who made me cry with laughter every day. In the penis pump scene, I laughed so much I got sent to my trailer to calm down like a school girl.”
While it took awhile for Liz to became a professional model — seriously, it didn't happen until the age of 29, where she made her debut as an Estee Lauder spokesmodel, holding that position from 1995 to 2001 — modeling remained a part of her life from that point onward. But, it was clear that the world of acting was what she had her sights on.
After making her debut in 1987’s Aria, Elizabeth Hurley followed that oddity with more commercial films like Passenger 57, EDtv, Serving Sara and the previously mentioned Bedazzled and Austin Powers, among others. She’s also been comfortable on TV, too, first in Britain in shows like Inspector Morse, Christabel and The Human Face, and then on American ones like Gossip Girl and E!’s The Royals, where she's the current star, Queen Helena.
What follows is FHM’s guide to Liz’ various film and TV roles.
Let’s face it, you don’t see this every day (and in fact, probably haven’t in 30 years): it’s an anthology-based film featuring 10 stories set in the world of opera. Liz appears in “Die toe Stadt”, directed by Bruce Beresford.
Rowing With The Wind (1988)
It’s a Frankenstein movie….sort of. Liz is Claire Clairmont (much repetition much?), sister-in-law of Mary Wollstonecraft, who has begun writing that classic horror novel. But as the personal lives of those around the author start to crumble, she begins to wonder if her creation is the source of the problems.
Der Skipper (1990)
Liz and Patsy Kensit (she was the oh-so-sexy blond who Martin Riggs loved and lost and avenged in Lethal Weapon 2) join a yacht captain (played by Jurgen Prochnow) on a trip to Barbados with their own agenda.
Passenger 57 (1992)
When terrorist Charles Rane (played by Bruce Payne) is freed mid-flight on a passenger plane taking him to his incarceration, former policeman John Cutter (Wesley Snipes) has to take them down. Liz plays Sabrina Ritchie, bad guy disguised as a stewardess. This one was Die Hard on a plane.
Beyond Bedlam (1994)
Liz is a neurologist who, along with a homicide detective, finds herself in the crosshairs of a psychopath. Don’t you hate when that happens?
Mad Dogs And Englishmen (1995)
An upper-class London heroin addict (Liz)) takes up with an American student (C. Thomas Howell) and draws the ire of a corrupt narcotics agent (Joss Ackland). Lizzy, heroin? C’mon, girl, get it together!
Dangerous Ground (1997)
Ice Cube teams up with Liz to try and protect his character’s younger brother from a South African drug lord.
Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery (1997)
When international playboy and British secret agent Austin Powers (Mike Myers) is taken out of cryogenic freeze after 30 years, he’s recruited to take down his old nemesis Dr. Evil (also played by Myers). Helping him do so is Liz as agent Vanessa Kensington, who tries to help him adjust to the world of the 1990s, particularly when it comes to his swinging sexuality from the 1960s.
Permanent Midnight (1998)
Liz is a television producer who marries an American writer (Ben Stiller) so that she can get her green card. She gets him a top on a popular television series, but both of their careers are threatened by his growing addition to heroin.
Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999)
Liz briefly reprises her role of Vanessa Kensington, who, at the film’s beginning, is enjoying her honeymoon with Austin Powers — UNTIL she reveals herself to be one of Dr. Evil’s killer fembots as she attempts to shoot Austin with her breast guns. When this attempt fails, she self-destructs, leaving a devastated Austin behind, his only solace coming from the realization that he’s single again. Yeah, baby!
My Favorite Martian (1999)
Although TV reporter Tim O’Hara (Jeff Daniels) initially wants to expose a martian (Christopher Lloyd) stranded on Earth in the hopes it will advance his career, he ultimately decides to, instead, help him try and repair his ship so that he can go home. Unfortunately, fellow reporter Brace Channing (Liz), who finds out about the martian, has no conscience when it comes to that sort of thing and the truth could be revealed.
Matthew McConaughey is Ed Pekurny, who agrees to allow his life to be turned into a reality TV show. Needless to say, fame isn’t what it’s cracked up to be. Liz plays a woman designed to enter Ed’s life strictly so that the ratings will go up. Doesn’t sound so far removed from today’s reality TV landscape, does it?
Brendan Fraser’s Elliot makes a deal with the Devil (Liz), who in exchange for his soul grants him seven wishes — none of which works out the way he thinks they will. Hey, this version of the Devil is at least more appealing than the red-skinned guy with the horns.
The Weight Of Water (2000)
Told in the 19th Century and today, the film is described by Google as being about “a 19th Century murder and a contemporary womean whose obsession with a notorious unsolved crime leads her to confront devastating truths in her own life.” Liz is Anethe Christensen, one of the murder victims in the past. Directed by Kathryn Bigelow.
Double Whammy (2001)
Cop Ray (Dennis Leary) Pluto deals with a variety of weird people and circumstances in his life, not the least of which is the so-called “sexually aggressive chiropractor” (Liz) who could very well be the thing that truly destroys his life.
Dennis Leary and Liz reunite on screen. This time he’s playing a guy who has to come to grips with a lifetime of loving and leaving women if he wants his grandmother’s inheritance and make amends with a dozen of them. Liz is the estate executor who tells him that he has to get their forgiveness if he wants the inheritance.
Serving Sara (2002)
Liz is Sara, a woman who, along with a process server (Matthew Perry), travels across the country to fight back against her husband who is trying to cut her off from their fortune when he files for divorce.
The line between fantasy and reality blurs when an actress (Liz) begins behaving like the 19th-century murderer she is playing. Yeah, that’s usually a sign that something’s up.
Gossip Girl (2007-12)
Describes Google, “High school is over for the privileged former students at an exclusive prep school on Manhattan's Upper East Side, but Gossip Girl still shares text-messaged scoops on scandals and heartache.” The identity of Gossip Girl is unrevealed, however we DO know that in the show’s fifth season Liz joined the cast as wealthy Los Angeles businesswoman Diana Payne.
Made In Romania (2010)
Disaster strikes when a low-budget movie producer travels to Romania to film a Victorian drama. The film is considered a “mockumentary,” with Liz playing an exaggerated version of herself.
Gerard Depardieu is retired gangster Victor Lambert, who turns to former accomplice Alexandra Ivanov (Liz) to head to Russia so that he can avenge the death of his son.
The Royals (2015-18)
Liz is Queen Helena Henstridge, matriarch of a British royal family (strictly fictional, of course), and this series follows the soap opera lives of her, the king, and various princes and princesses.
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