It's a big weekend for the Strictly Come Dancing finalist, so in tribute we recall the last time we caught up with our two-time cover star. Go Lisa! Or failing that, go Rachel! Just don't go Tom!
The last time you came to an FHM party you got through a bottle of karate-juice Jack Daniel’s with our International Editorial Director…
Lies! It’s all lies I tell you! No, it’s not. I think I got him to nip out and get the bottle for me because there was none at the party…
You were also first on the dance floor. Are sexy moves the best way to pull?
Ha! I just love to dance. I don’t care who watches. If I’m out and there’s a good atmosphere I’ll make the most of it. I love dancing and there’s nothing better than having a good old boogie.
When we interviewed Denise Van Outen recently, she said that she felt her body was improving with age. Do you feel the same way?
No, I read that and thought, “Hmm, how is that possible?” Of course I don’t think that, I’m a woman! I think I need to start doing yoga or something.
You once said you didn’t bother with exercise but relied on sex to stay trim. Do you still stand by that?
I said that about 50 years ago! I think it’s a very, very good way to exercise. And you definitely feel like you’re improving your body if you’ve been having sex.
Very true. So after a big meal do you reach for the Kama Sutra to really shift the calories?
No. I just burn it off whatever way I need to. No! Anyway, I’ve been single for a while now.
Noted. But you famously dated George Clooney and Little Britain loon David Walliams. Be honest: would an FHM reader stand a chance with you?
Of course! I don’t really have a type. I guess I go for tall, dark and handsome, with a great sense of humour. And they need to be self-assured and interesting. It wouldn’t matter if he didn’t have two pennies to rub together. Although obviously I’d prefer not to date a tramp.
Rightly so. Reassure us: does a charmer like George Clooney secretly have a really geeky side?
I don’t really think there was any side like that. I don’t want to go into details to be honest with you, because I don’t want anyone calling me up going, “Why did you say that about me?” Do you know what I mean? I’m going to avoid answering that if I may!
Is it weird when your mum answers the phone and shouts, “Darling, it’s George Clooney for you!”
Yes. She answered the phone once when George called and got a bit confused. She’s not used to speaking to many Americans or anything, so I think she said, “You’ve got the wrong number,” to him at first. It was really quite embarrassing.
Who was the last famous person to call your mobile and what did they want?
It was probably George calling up and speaking about me coming to his premiere. It was the premiere of his film Good Night, And Good Luck and it was probably about that.
What’s been the most surreal moment you’ve encountered while hanging with the silver-topped Hollywood A-lister?
There’s been a couple of times. During the filming of Ocean’s Twelve I was with Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, George and Don Cheadle and then Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas walked in. That was one moment where I was like, “Erm, this is surreal.” Everybody was just super-famous. I had to leave and go back to my room and call my best friend and say, “Can you just bring me back to reality for a second?” Even though they’re normal people at the end of the day, it was all of them together that made it so freaky.
Impressive. But have you ever been to a party where the drinks were served from trays on dwarves’ heads?
Ha ha! No! Have you?
No. But we hoped that in Hollywood it went on all the time.
I can imagine it. “Get all the little people in!” I haven’t ever seen that, but I’ll suggest it. Perhaps. Probably the most surreal moment was when I met Stevie Wonder, who is a complete hero of mine. What he does if he thinks you’re someone beautiful, he takes your hand and he does this little tickle in it. It’s like he “feels” you by tracing the palm of your hand with two fingers. I don’t know what he can tell from that but it felt really quite special. I was like, “Oh my God!”
Shame that poor Stevie won’t get to enjoy the trouser-rupturing photos of you that our readers can see. Where were the pictures taken?
We were in Majorca. We’d get up early to catch the light, shoot all day, then go out in the evenings around the yachts and restaurants. There are a few bars and clubs that are fantastic. It’s really beautiful, like Ibiza – just not as crazy.
Have you ever done a beach shoot and had a nudie old man wander up?
Yes, totally! Years ago I was in a bright pink bikini on a nudist beach. It was about six in the morning and this guy walked past with his willy out. I saw him coming up the beach and thought, “Surely he can’t be naked?” And then he got closer and I realised, “Yep. He’s very much naked.” He strolled up, then stood there watching the shoot and said, “Morning!” It was funny, but I’m used to that sort of thing now. Although I still think, “Do you not realise you’re stark naked?”
Indeed. Have you ever been tempted to strip off?
I took my mum to Antigua about ten years ago and there was a gorgeous place on the beach where it was all nude. So I went down there with my mum and there were all these old guys nude. Not attractive at all. Not that mature guys aren’t attractive, but these guys were really old. We lay down and moved our bikinis about a little bit and made them smaller, kind of made them into thongs but didn’t actually take them off. I wouldn’t feel too comfortable lying there naked with my legs kind of… no, I’d feel very self-conscious. People wander by! It just feels a little bit wrong!
You must have had a midnight skinny-dip though?
Yes, I have. But naked in a swimming pool and stuff, not in the sea – that would scare me. It’s just the thought of sharks, or something brushing past your leg. If something brushed past me I’d freak. But swimming pool skinny-dipping, that’s totally fine.
Sweet! Can you sunbathe topless or do you always have to keep one eye on the horizon for the paparazzi?
I do look around a bit from time to time. And when I see a boat I think, “I wonder if there’s a camera on that?” Or people on the beach, that’s another thing. I don’t really like sunbathing topless because anyone can take an unflattering picture of you, and I don’t want my nan to see me with my boobs out on the cover of The Sun.
Which women do you think are sexy?
There’s so many! I think Halle Berry is extremely sexy. Her body is amazing and she’s a really powerful woman. Madonna is sexy, more so for a woman than for a guy, probably. She’s amazing. And Beyoncé’s cool; I like real women who are curvy and talented.
So have you ever fancied a woman?
I can appreciate other women’s bodies and beauty. When I was younger I probably had a crush on a girl, but back when I was very, very young.
Ever kissed another woman?
I’m not telling you!
Well, if you haven’t, then you’re missing out.
Ha! It’s like, “Let me tell you something from a guy’s point of view – you need to kiss a woman.” But no, sorry, I’m a guys’ girl.
Original interview by David Moynihan in the February 2006 issue of FHM UK magazine