Playmate Review 1989 - Features
August 4, 2005
Glendale CA USA
Erika Eleniak has jumped over tremendous hurdles to reach this point in her life. At the age of thirteen, blonde-haired Erika made waves on the big screen when she played Elliot’s schoolyard crush and first kiss in Steven Spielberg’s E. T. the Extra-Terrestrial. Unfortunately, the young starlet’s began to experiment with drugs and alcohol, as a way to cope with her parents’ divorce. “I was going through so much pain. I had a boyfriend I had no business being with, and I felt not good enough, abandoned,” admits Erika about her past. “I chose to be the girl you don't want to mess with. I didn't have a lot of direction in my life, so I partied too hard.” Miss Eleniak’s troubled teen years came to an end when she was 17 years old, when a new boyfriend introduced her to Alcoholics Anonymous, enticing her to turn over a new leaf. “A.A. has really made me aware of my feelings,” explains Erika. “I want to take charge of my own life and I want to be a good person.” And that’s exactly what Erika Eleniak did—focusing her energies on her modeling and acting career, she landed roles any girl would give her left arm for—a red bathing suit on Baywatch and a centerfold spread as Playboy’s Miss July 1989. The busty beauty rose to fame on the small screen playing rookie lifeguard Shauni McLain—every Friday night, her fans were glued to their TV screens, her nautical-themed centerfold hanging on their walls. Yes, Miss July 1989’s career was on the rise—thanks to her Playmate background and acting skills, she was given many more famous roles. Producers for Steven Seagal’s Under Siege were looking for a gorgeous blonde Playmate with blue eyes and a perfect body to play the action star’s leading lady. They turned to Playboy’s Photo Director to help them find the perfect Playmate for the part, and he pointed producers to Miss July 1989, who was given the role instantly. “I am completely satisfied with who I am and where I am, inside and out,” says Erika, whose fame propelled her to roles on CSI: Miami and Desperate Housewives, not to mention several Playboy covers. “My ambition is to be a successful, happy person. One day I’d like a house in the country and happy babies.” From troubled teen to Playmate of the Month to Hollywood star, Erika Eleniak makes the comeback look easy.