Elizabeth Hurley (born 10.6.1985)
Elizabeth Hurley (also known as Liz Hurley) is an English model and actress, best known for her long-standing career modeling for Estée Lauder and for her long-term relationship with the actor Hugh Grant.
Elizabeth Hurley: Childhood
Liz Hurley was born in Basingstoke; the middle child of Angela, a primary school teacher and Reg, a major in the British Army.
As a child, she wanted to become a dancer and studied dance and theatre at the London Studio Centre.
Elizabeth Hurley: From Obscurity to the Spotlight
Elizabeth Hurley met Hugh Grant in 1987 whilst she was working on a Spanish production called Remando Al Viento. They embarked upon what was to become a lengthy relationship. In 1994, she accompanied Grant to the premiere of his Four Weddings and a Funeral film, wearing a striking Versace dress that was held together down each side with outsized gold safety pins. It was this appearance that brought her to the attention of Estée Lauder.
Her first modelling job, for Estée Lauder, was at the age of 29. She has gone on to feature in many of their advertising campaigns. Although she was replaced as the face of the company in 2001, she has continued to model for them in a lesser role and in 2008 her contract was renewed for the 14th year.
Liz Hurley has also featured in ad campaigns for Monsoon, Lancel and Patrick Cox as well as having three Vogue cover shots to her name. She launched her own swimwear range, Elizabeth Hurley Beach in 2005 and in 2008, launched a range of 12 swimsuits for MANGO, the Spanish clothing label.
Elizabeth Hurley: Film Career
Hurley's first film appearance was in Aria in 1987. She went on to appear in a number of low-budget films but most notably, she appeared alongside Mike Myers in Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery and Austin Powers: the Spy Who Shagged Me. Hurley's performances have never garnered much acclaim from critics and in 2000, she was nicknamed 'Elizabeth Scabley', for breaking a five month acting strike, to film an Estée Lauder advert. She was fined £70,000 by the Screen Actors' Guild.
Hurley is credited as an executive producer on two of the films released by Hugh Grant's own production company. Grant starred in both of the films, Mickey Blue Eyes and Extreme Measures. The company closed its US offices in 2002 and Grant legally resigned as director in 2005.
Elizabeth Hurley: Television Work
Liz Hurley was broadly criticised for her work on the Sky One reality show Project Catwalk. Not only did her presenting style come under scrutiny, but she was also criticised for asking contestants to send her free clothes, off the record. She was dropped after the first series of the show, after it achieved only 1% of its target audience.
Elizabeth Hurley: Personal Life
Hurley dated Hugh Grant between 1987 and 2000. In 1995, Hurley stood by Grant when he was arrested with a prostitute in Los Angeles. Five years later, they announced an 'amicable split'.
In April 2002, Hurley gave birth to Damian Charles, the son of the film producer Stephen Bing. Bing denied paternity until a DNA test proved that he is, indeed, Damian's father. Elizabeth Hurley is also godmother to Patsy Kensit's son Lennon.
In 2007, Liz Hurley married the Indian textile heir Arun Nayar. They were first married at Sudeley Castle, followed by a second, Hindu ceremony in Jodhpur, India. The celebrations were reported to have cost around £2 million, but the couple were paid that amount by Hello! Magazine for the sale of the wedding photographs. Guests at the wedding included Elton John, Elle Macpherson, Patsy Kensit, Donatella Versace, Valentino and Tracey Emin.