The quintessential '80s supermodel, this European beauty endured a tumultuous childhood before taking the fashion world by storm. In 1968 her parents fled their native Czechoslovakia for Sweden, leaving 3-year-old Porizkova behind with her grandmother. It would take seven years before she was reunited with her mom and dad, after which they divorced. Although Porizkova had a difficult time adjusting to life in Sweden, she became a teen model and soon left to pursue a career in Paris and New York. And she was successful: Porizkova appeared in scores of magazines, released sexy calendars, twice graced the cover of the Sports Illustrated
swimsuit issue, and enjoyed a multimillion-dollar stint as the face of Estée Lauder. She also starred in the Cars' "Drive" video, where she met and fell for band front man Ric Ocasek. In the late '80s, Porizkova launched an acting career, earning respectable reviews as a Czech immigrant in Anna
and seducing viewers, along with costar Tom Selleck's character, in the crime comedy Her Alibi
. But the mother of two soon turned her focus to family, making only occasional appearances in little-seen indies (Wedding Bell Blues
, Long Time Since
). In 2007, she returned to the spotlight as one of the celebrity contestants on the fourth edition of Dancing with the Stars,
although she and partner Alec Mazo were the first couple voted off the reality competition. Though she was fired in 2009 from a gig as a judge on America's Next Top Model,
Porizkova has remained in the public eye as a blogger for the Huffington Post
and Modelina. In 2010, she landed a multi-episode arc on the soap As the World Turns
.Paulina Porizkova Fast Facts:
- Left behind to live with her grandmother and brother when her parents fled Czechoslovakia for Sweden in 1968. They were reunited seven years later.
- Was the face of Estée Lauder in late 1980s and early 1990s.
- Met her husband Ric Ocasek, the former lead singer for the Cars, when she appeared in the band's "Drive" music video.
- Wrote a novel, A Model Summer (2008), and cowrote a children's book, The Adventures of Ralphie the Roach (1992); has blogged for the Huffington Post and Modelina.
- Was a judge on America's Next Top Model in 2008 and 2009; was fired the day before her 44th birthday in 2009.
- Landed a multi-episode arc on the soap As the World Turns in 2010.
- Paulina Porizkova Relationships:
- Ric Ocasek - Husband
- Derek Otcasek - Stepson
- Eron Otcasek - Stepson
- Christopher Otcasek - Stepson
- Jonathan Raven Ocasek - Son
- Oliver Orion Ocasek - Son