Elle Macpherson (born 29 March 1963) is an Australian businesswoman, supermodel and actress. She is most famous worldwide for her five cover appearances on Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue in the 1980s and 1990s. Nicknamed The Body, she is 183cm (6'0") tall.
Macpherson was born Eleanor Nancy Gow in Cronulla, New South Wales, the daughter of Peter Gow a former club president of Sydney rugby league club the Cronulla Sharks. She is the eldest of four children; the Australian celebrity Mimi Macpherson is her sister. Her parents divorced when she was fourteen, and her mother later married Neil MacPherson. MacPherson then changed her last name to her stepfather's. She studied law for one year at the University of Sydney.
While on holiday in Tasmania, Macpherson was discovered by Francis Grill and signed to Click Model Management. Macpherson became an international star through her appearance in Elle magazine. She appeared in every issue for six straight years. During this time she married (at age 21) Elle creative manager Gilles Bensimon. Eventually she gained even more exposure through Sports Illustrated magazines annual swimsuit issue. She appeared on the cover a record five times, (1986, 1987, 1988, 1994 and 2006). Rising in popularity, her exceptional body measurements (36-25-35) were the reasons for her nickname "The Body"a tag that was to become her brand. She also released a series of successful calendars and modeled for lingerie giant Victoria's Secret.
By 1986, her popularity had increased sufficiently for Time magazine to run a cover entitled The Big Elle. The Australian government offered her a post on the tourist commission as an unofficial ambassador.
On 26 April 1999, the post office of Antigua and Barbuda issued a sheetlet of eight different $1.20 postage stamps with images of Elle Macpherson (Scott #2241) the first time that any post office had issued stamps to honour a Super Model.
Soon after Sirens, Macpherson appeared nude in Playboy magazine. She chose for the pictures to be published in all countries except Australia, as she didn't want her parents to see them. At the time she posed for Playboy, Australian magazines Women's Day and New Idea published shots from the shoot. They were also featured on current affairs programs A Current Affair and 60 Minutes. Macpherson also published two calendars in which she appeared in see-through tops.
In 1999, Macpherson appeared in five episodes of the United States sitcom Friends as Joey's roommate and girlfriend, Janine Lecroix. (The actress had been named in an earlier season as someone Chandler would picture during sex.) Macpherson went on to film Batman & Robin with George Clooney, Jane Eyre with William Hurt and has also appeared alongside Ben Stiller and Sarah Jessica Parker in If Lucy Fell. Her most controversial acting to date is the Showtime Cable Network miniseries A Girl Thing. In it she plays a woman experimenting with bi-sexuality. Macpherson appears in several nude love scenes with co-star Kate Capshaw.
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