Sharon Stone is practically unrecognizable as Linda Lovelace's strict, working class mother in "Lovelace" — so unrecognizable, in fact, that her own manager of 30 years couldn't spot her when she was in costume. "It was fun to be walking down the street and have my manager drive right by me and be like, 'Where is she?'" Stone remembers. "It's just great to be so immersed in a character that people don't even see you."
That Stone disappears into a woman so bland and normal-looking is particularly humorous to her, considering her early struggles in Hollywood.
"In the beginning of my career I couldn't get parts because people didn't think that I was sexy or pretty," she says. "My manager used to call me up and say, 'You know, you can't get that movie because they don't think that you're hot.' I'm such a bookworm and I was always at home and shy in my library."
Luckily, she had some influential pals. "My really good friend is and was Marilyn Grabowski, who was the editor of Playboy, and she was just like, 'You should do a Playboy spread.' It seemed so far-fetched," Stone remembers. "She said, 'If you tell people you're sexy, they'll think you're sexy. Use your brain.' So we did this Playboy shoot, and then people decided that, 'Oh, she's sexy!' And then I got 'Basic Instinct,' which was for me this tremendous stretch to turn myself into this super-beautiful, sexy character."
And it was all Hollywood history after that — except that Stone soon found herself in exactly the opposite situation she was in at the start. "I only got cast in the sexy parts, and that was fantastic because who doesn't want to be gorgeous and hot and sexy? Then, you know, I couldn't get any other kind of parts," she says. "It's taken until now where I start getting these other kind of parts. People thought I was a sex symbol, which to me was just the most hilarious thing of all time, because you should see me in the morning. It's not really that frigging hot, honestly."
To hear Sharon Stone tell it, gratuitous nudity isn't as off-putting in a movie as filmmakers gratuitously going out of their way to avoid nudity. "It's so disappointing in films when you see the comforter toupee-taped to someone's chest. It takes you out of the scene, it doesn't protect you from something within the scene," she says. "I remember my father asking me when we did 'Basic Instinct,' 'Do you really have to be naked all the time?' And I'm like, 'Well ... yeah. I'm playing a sociopathic sexual serial killer.' And he goes, 'Yeah… that's really true.'"