Rachel Sterling has the face of an angel and an amazing body … of work. In addition to being one of the most photographed women on Al Gore’s Internet, she has also appeared in Wedding Crashers and on The Man Show – two surefire ways to ensure most of the men in the country have enjoyed her talents.
Even though she’s just finished filming her next movie role and she’s in the process of putting together her own Voltron vanity group, Rachel took a few minutes out of her busy schedule to sit down and talk to us about everything from cauliflower ear to Tara Reid boobs as we learn about the life of a hottie.
Before we get started, tell us a little bit about yourself. Where are you originally from and tell us a little bit about your childhood?
I feel like I’m in therapy. I grew up back and forth from Texas to California.
So do you call Texas or California home?
Well, my sister lives in California, so I would call California home, I guess. The rest of my family lives in Texas.
Where you always one of the most popular kids in high school, or were you more of a late bloomer?
I was definitely a late bloomer. My mom was really strict, so I wasn’t allowed to wear jeans and I had really big glasses and was very flat chested. Plus, I was kind of geeky.
If you consider yourself a late bloomer, how old were you when you “blossomed,” so to speak?
Probably when I was 19.
Is that when you began modeling? How did that come about?
The modeling thing was a joke, actually. I was in Santa Barbara trying to go to college, I didn’t finish. A couple of my friends were in a photography school out there and they just needed to finish an assignment. I was really, really shy and I didn’t want to do it. They were like, “No, no, no, just do it.” Then one thing lead to another and here I am.
You have to be one of the most photographed human beings on the planet. How many photo shoots are you a part of each year?
I have no idea. I know last year alone I did over 20 photo shoots and I was on the road a lot promoting Wedding Crashers. I managed to squeeze in at least 20, I know for sure. I’m actually scheduling some shoots now. I just finished up doing a little art project with Scott Caan – we were just going to shoot a roll of film and it ended up like five rolls of film later. It’s kind of one of those things where you accidentally keep shooting.
Some people might not know this, but you played a pivotal role on one of the most groundbreaking television shows of the last decade or so – you were a Juggy on The Man Show. How did that job come about and how exactly does one audition for such a role?
I was friends with all of the girls that were Juggys on the original Man Show. I’ve known Vanessa since I was 18 and a lot of the girls, we’re all actresses, of course, so we’d go on auditions together or we’d done Hawaiian Tropics or something crazy like that. So it was basically like going to work with eight of your friends and just being a crazy person.
As for the auditioning, I know I got picked because I did the sketch comedy for a year and a half before I joined the cast. They would just kind of see who had a decent sense of humor and kind of go from there. They did this weird auditioning process, where they were like, jump up and down and scream and stuff like that, but I think that was more for their own amusement.
What was it like working on that show when it was still good and how long were you involved with it?
(Laughs) All in all, I was a regular cast member for a season and I did the sketch comedy for two seasons. So, I got a few seasons under my belt with them. It was so much fun. A lot of people don’t realize how hard of a job it is, though. You’ve got to get there at 8, no being late, and you go straight into hair and makeup and there’s a whole bunch of us, so there’s not like there’s a lot of downtime like there is on most sets. You are constantly rotating into wardrobe – there’s set changes and wardrobe changes for every segment and we would tape three shows in one day. So we had to do all of the blocking and rehearse, rehearse, rehearse because if you are not in a certain space when we are actually filming live, then you’ve messed up the shot. There’s no do-overs. And if you’re not in the shot, then you’ve messed up a cue for somebody else. It’s not just jumping around.
So, Jimmy Kimmel and Adam Corolla, what can you tell us about them?
I love them to itty-bitty pieces. They were such a fun team to work with and they have this horrifying sense of humor and they’re just disgusting and I love it because I’m disgusting. Sometimes I have these disgusting thoughts and I just say them and they’re the only two people probably on the planet that won’t look at me like I’m crazy.
You realize when you say something open ended like that, you’re going to have to share with the class. What kind of thoughts are we talking here?
I can’t really think of anything now, you’re putting me on the spot. I will laugh at any fart or poop joke. They happen to really like the fart and poop jokes. So, if there’s anything that the end of the joke is like “something sphincter,” I will laugh. Most girls would go, “Eww, that’s so disgusting.” I will completely laugh and cry from laughing so hard. I turn into like 10 years old again.
You’re definitely a girl after our heart then because that’s definitely our demographic there.
In addition to The Man Show, you’ve found your way onto another Comedy Central show – playing the role of Madam Caramel on Reno 911. What makes that show enjoyable is that a large part of it is improvised. Is that a challenge for you or is it something you really enjoy doing?
I loved it. I thought it was fantastic. I was actually really excited to be part of something that is improv. The characters are so good. There are some scenes, because, you know, they break them up among two seasons. When I watch the show, I don’t know what is coming first – what scene. Some scenes, its just as simple as looking at them like they’re crazy. In some scenes, I’m trying to come up with a whopper back. The camera just keeps rolling. I remember we rolled camera for about 20 minutes on one scene. It just kept going and going.
Do they just give you a ball park of where they want to see the scene go and you’re kind of free to play with it?
Yeah, I was in an acting conservatory for years, so it’s the same thing, except, I’ve never taken a comedic class. All of my classes have always been dramatic. I was really happy that I got an opportunity to do that. It’s kind of like dancing, you know. They were good instructors. They lead well and it was really easy to follow them.
You played a role in the biggest comedy of 2005 – Wedding Crashers, which recently came out on DVD. What was it like working on a movie with such a talented cast? Was it a fun atmosphere? Did you hang out with Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn?
The atmosphere was surprisingly fun, fun, fun. The director was amazing and all the people in production really wanted it to be a fun project. Everybody was treated really, really nicely and they really kept the momentum going. I worked with Vince Vaughn and there was some downtime when we got to hang out. We were just chatting about random stuff. It’s definitely an opportunity that I’m very happy that I got a chance to do.
And we do think you were easily one of the biggest people in that movie. A lot of good things from the character “Brunette.”
(Laughs) Yes, I was really upset I didn’t get a name though.
If you could name your character, what would her name be?
Maybe her name would have been like Josie because she had that flippy hair.
We understand you are currently working on a film called Price to Pay, which is being produced by Brad Wyman, who also produced Monster. What can you tell us about the film and your role in it?
The film is an 80s piece, so we are definitely eighties-ed out, which is an exciting process. I don’t really remember the 80s much. I was a little kid, so I guess I didn’t really pay attention to what I was wearing. I don’t think my hair has ever seen this much hair spray. My hair was crunchy – I washed it, it was still there. And, oh my gosh, so much makeup. People really went out like this? It’s crazy.
But, it’s an 80s – it’s a timepiece and it’s about this group of friends – it’s a drug culture movie, definitely. The Price to Pay – all of these horrible things start happening. They’re coming of age, but in the movie, they all should have come of age already. It’s the first time I’ve gotten to do something that was super dramatic on camera. One of the lead characters overdoses and I’m friends with them, so I got to cry and react. I was a big mess – makeup everywhere – and actually got a little sick. There was a lot of drugs going on and I can’t even watch fake needles. Good times.
Did you have to resist the urge after a long day of filming to go out with the 80s hair and makeup?
I left it on when my girlfriend came over. She wanted to borrow some double stick tape. Double stick tape, for everyone that doesn’t know, you usually use it for wigs. But you put it on your boob and you put it on the fabric of the clothes you’re wearing, so you don’t have a “Tara Reid moment,” where your nipple is hanging out. I’m really paranoid about that, so I double stick everything.
She came over and I still had this make up on and she laughed at me. I said, “It doesn’t look that bad,” and she said, “Oh, yes it does.”
What direction do you hope to take your career from here? What type of roles would you like to play down the road? Which actors or directors would you like to work with?
I’d really like to do a romantic comedy. I think because of what I look like, it’s harder for people to envision me in a dramatic role. So I think it’s a little easier for people to take me as a funny person. I’d love to do a dramatic role, but I think I’ll wait a couple of years. Every time I audition for something, I’m always auditioning for a kid – like a teenager or something like that.
So in your romantic comedy, who would be starring opposite of you?
I would love to come back and star with Vince Vaughn. I think that would be a fantastic full circle. Wouldn’t that be great? We could sit on set, “Remember when I was Brunette? When I was Josie?”
Are you worried about getting typecast?
A lot of people worry about getting typecast, I’m just so happy to get cast.
You are a member of the Purrfect Angelz. For those who aren’t familiar, who are the Purrfect Angelz? How did you get involved with them and what can you tell us about their shows?
One of my good friends, Lisa Ligon, she was a Dallas cheerleader and she just has this amazing group of all of our friends that all have dance backgrounds. They performed for the troops for the USO tour. They are kind of into the biker scene, a bit, they do the Easy Rider tour and stuff like that.
I still try to help out with fundraising for them, but I actually started my own group. I’m like a dance group whore. I was a Pussycat Doll, then I took a break, I wanted to have fun with my friends. The Purrfect Angelz is more about dancing with my closest friends – Pussycat Dolls is more corporate. Then, I kind of missed performing, so I ended up calling together the formation of Voltron – who do I know that’s a model that has credits that’s in a FHM, Maxim, something like that? I just kind of went through the list in my head of who I wanted and I came up with this group of girls. We are actually having our first press shoot on the 29th.
So what is your Voltron group called?
It’s called Sugar Blush. The Sugar Blush beauties.
And what do you hope to accomplish with them?
It’s completely a vanity project. (Laughs) I wanted to dance, I wanted to perform. I was going to dance class anyway, so I thought maybe I should put together a little group and we all have credits and we all do appearances. And sometimes when you are not doing anything, you wish there were more appearances to travel on the road more. So, work begets work, why don’t we put together an act and take the show on the road when we’re not doing anything. Of course, now that it’s coming together, I bet anything all of us will book movies and we won’t be able to do anything.
One of our favorite parts of your resume is your stint as an XFL cheerleader. What was it like being a part of that experimental league and do you wish it had been more successful?
I don’t know a thing about football, so it was very confusing for me. The outfits were kind of cute – it was more of a dance thing for me. We didn’t exactly know what was going on. They were like, “Okay, now jump up and down.”
The common theme is – as long as there’s dancing involved, you’re game.
I’ve got to surrender to the beat.
Although you may not be a big football fan, we did hear you’re a big Ultimate Fighting Championship fan. What is it about UFC that you like?
I think I just like the carnage. It’s kind of like the Romans. There’s something about sweaty men beating the pulp out of each other that just makes me giggle. I find the cauliflower ear quite hysterical.
Enough about that other stuff and back to what’s important – you. How often do you get recognized in public? Can you go out in public without guys hitting on you?
I think it’s strictly a numbers game. I think even if I wasn’t on television, that’s just what guys are programmed to do. It’s like girls and shopping. I think half the time they’re not really trying to get my number, they’re just bored. At least that’s what I tell myself.
If you would be so kind, we’d love to hear an example or two of some of the worst pick-ups lines that guys have tried on you.
Guys, if a girl looks up at you and smiles and continues to talk to you, proceed. If the girl looks up and says hi, then turns around or starts playing with her phone or is doing anything to ignore you, take a walk. Do not proceed to whip out your cell phone and say, “Can I get your number?” Well no, honey, because if I wanted to be talking to you, I’d be speaking to you. We are in a day and age where women will go after what they want, so unless you are Amish and living on the plain, you don’t need to try so hard. Every guy that hits on me absolutely gets nowhere. The guy that gets me is the one that says something nice and then leaves and like completely ignores me.
Do you have a type?
In the past, I’ve always gone for the blue-eyed artistic type. I’m dating someone now who definitely doesn’t have blue eyes and is everything opposite. Definitely one common theme is they have a lot of patience because you need a lot of patience to deal with me day in and day out. I’m very strange.
There’s impromptu dances, there’s questions like, “Baby, what if I passed out here on the middle of the floor and jell-o came out of my nose?” I puppeteer my dog a lot, I have conversations with my dog. Sometimes, my boyfriend looks at me and says, “What did I get myself into?” I’m really messy, I hate cleaning, but at the same time I’m very anal retentive, where I want stuff put away, I just don’t want to put it there. I always have to be right. Oh, and I’m a horrible backseat driver.
Tell us something not many people know about you.
I eat like a pig. I’m a junk food junkie. I will eat any type of pizza, any type of hamburger. If I don’t have to get out of the car, I’m happy. I like white trash food – like Frito pie.
We’ve got one last thing for you here. We’re going to do a word association. We’ll just throw out a name and tell me the first thing that comes to your mind.
Cake. Boobs and cake.
Ugly lingerie. The cheesiest lingerie. Boobs, cake and lingerie.
Hopefully lots of money. Money can’t buy you happiness, but it can buy you a lot of stuff that will put a smile on your face.
Interviewed by Brian Murphy, January 2006. Price to Pay is schedule to be released in May. Rachel will be filming six episodes of The Price is Right in February and she will be featured in the March issue of Playboy magazine.