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Then & Now: Tia Carrere

Aug. 17, 2012by: Salacious Crumb
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If I were given a time-traveling Delorean, there are many hotties whom I'd like to visit in their prime. Over the past few weeks, we've time-traveled to the past and present of Marty McFly's mom, Phoebe Cates and Lauren Holly. They've all been quite pleasant to catch up with. A lot is bound to change overtime, and I'm here to embrace the acceptance of that. Thanks to this golden age of the internet, we can keep up with all of our favorite vanished, nostalgic movie hotties, whether they'd like us to or not. So let's spin a wheel of fate and hope for the best with the babelicious Tia Carrere!

THEN:

From what you could most likely dig out of your memory of Tia Carrere, you probably know her best, simply as a babe. In fact, she's a robo-babe. In Latin, she would be called "babia majora". If she were a president, she would be Baberham Lincoln. You may remember she was favored in the "Battle of the Babes: Movie Rock Chick Battle" a couple months back. I've always been daunted by Tia Carrere, due mostly to her tropically delicious look. Not enough Hawaiian natives wind up making it as Hollywood eye-candy, mostly because, you know, they're in Hawaii. Though Tia Carerre was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, her parents were both Filipino. She says herself that she's of "Filipino, Spanish, and Chinese descent ... raised in Hawaii." I think we can all appreciate "mixed-heritage" hotties, because often-times, they're the best. In her years as a youngling, she strived to be a singer. The first thing about Carrere's career that we should all acknowledge is that her first break in Hollywood was becoming a model. Let's enjoy that slice of history for a moment.

Yum. It didn't take long for Tia to be noticed by the Hollywood big-wigs. Her first role was on the TV series Airwolf. If you were to chalk up the ridiculousness of that show with the zaniness of B-movie culture, you pretty much have Tia's filmography. However, she did so well with her next performance, on The A-Team, the show would've had her back to join the team, had it not been for scheduling conflicts with General Hospital, on which she spent about 2 years. Way to prioritize, Tia! She sang her soul out for the win on another '80's TV program called Star Search, where she was eliminated during the first round. However, soon after that appearance she was approached in a grocery store, by a producer in shining armor, who casted her in the movie ALOHA SUMMER. Her first released movie, though, was none other than Adam West's ZOMBIE NIGHTMARE. If you ever intend to check out this movie, I'd recommend checking out the Mystery Science Theater 3000 version, to hold your hand and walk you through the terror.

While one would think ZOMBIE NIGHTMARE was going to rake box-office bucks and get Tia into the big-league, she still had some competition as far as the era's "hotties" were concerned. She continued to make appearances on MacGyver, Quantum Leap, Anything But Love and Friday The 13th: The Series. She even played Kelly Bundy's rival modeling chick on Married... with Children.

                           

Kelly Bundy was always boiling hot, so to be put up on the same pedestal of hotness must've been overwhelming for Ms. Carrere. After all, she came into town wishing to be a singer, and that just hasn't worked out for her. But she did manage to pick up some more eye-candy roles in the Mickey Rourke "vehicle" vehicle, HARLEY DAVIDSON AND THE MARLBORO MAN, and then again in SHOWDOWN IN LITTLE TOKYO, showcasing her hotness, but not her singing. What gives, Hollywood? The producers were all focused on casting the sexiest female leads they could in order to attract an audience. So all Tia had to do was find a movie to work on that embraced her vocal skills while simultaneously embracing her T&A qualities. And this is where WAYNE'S WORLD finally came in.

                 

"Ooh, dream weaver... I believe you can get me through the night..." The bass-whaling, hair-waving, pube-sprouting Cassandra Wong. Talk about the perfect role for a hottie/rock enthusiast! Not only was she hot in the movie, but she also brought her voice to the table, making "Ballroom Blitz" her first professionally released single. She really does have a killer voice on that soundtrack, so much so I actually didn't think it was her real voice until I researched it myself.

                                                Camera one.. camera two.. camera one.. camera two..

WAYNE'S WORLD is a very well-written and executed comedy. It has such a specific Mike Myers-style sense of humor, it can't really be compared to much else. So in other words, Tia really lucked out on this one. It's not like she was a cast member of Saturday Night Live, and all she had going for her was a zombie flick and a slew of TV guest appearances. I guess this is why Tia is mostly known for her role as the gorgeous Cassandra, but that wasn't the last cinematic character she played for the sake of sleazing up a film. She landed a nice part in James Cameron's TRUE LIES, which is a movie to take pride in being credited for. The same may or may not be said for MY TEACHER'S WIFE, which was initially titled BAD WITH NUMBERS, a story of a troubled student seeking a tudor and winds up finding something more like this...

                                                                                                                Is this going to be on the exam? Please let it be..

The film was produced by Savoy Pictures, which dealt with a financial collapse in 1995, when the film was supposed to be released theatrically. Since the film wasn't entirely finished, eventually Trimark Pictures picked it up and released it on DVD, with the new title. I suppose MY TEACHER'S WIFE is more enticing than BAD WITH NUMBERS. MY TEACHER'S WIFE is more like a porno name, so more kids would be likely to pick it up, but that was years down the road. So what did the ever-so-hot Tia Carrere get into when she realized her first lead role was being set on the shelf?

                               

I'm betting (and hoping) that at least a handful of you saw that picture and went "Ohhhhh yeeeaaa" in your heads. Remember back when computer games were simplistic, but still adventurous and fun? Well, Tia herself decided to delve into that territory with The Daedalus Encounter. The story is centered on a group of space marines who, after reviving their dead captain to life in the form of their ship itself, crash into an alien spacecraft which is on a collision course with a star (it a was a little overwritten), but the main point of the game was solving puzzles, puzzles and more puzzles. The only thing that kept you going was the hope of Tia stripping her clothes off, or at least taking a damn shower. But, noOOoo. Oh well, at least Tia got involved with the times and did something different. Therefore, her career was just about set on track, so long as she didn't make any ill-advised moves.

      

Make that two ill-advised moves. In a row. I don't know who told Tia that Pauly Shore was a rising star just before the movie JURY DUTY started production, but she grabbed that sick, three-legged bull by the horns and went for it. I mean really went for it. I've never seen an actress take a romantic role with Pauly this seriously. Her character is pretty much there for both the "serious juror" aspect as well as the "falling for Pauly Shore" aspect. It was as upsetting as watching Jenny McCarthy fall for Larry the Cable Guy. And who was the hunk she decided to star alongside in her next flick? Oh yea, Jon Lovitz, he's hot. When I was a young warthog, I used to kinda dig HIGH SCHOOL HIGH. I was into silly humor, but I was also into Tia's role in it. It's the first-released picture that really acknowledges how hot of an actress she is.

                                 

Okay, so in the '90's, a lot of productions were shut down, and many movies played as puzzle pieces trying to find the right fit in the Hollywood jigsaw agenda (for some reason those masterfeces above had pulled through). One of the movies in the later '90's that didn't quite pull through was CONAN THE CONQUERER, all because Arnold Schwarzenegger couldn't work it into his schedule. So instead of, you know, not making it, they went ahead with the production but changed the lead character and title name to KULL THE CONQUERER. Can you take a wild guess? Yea, it sucked.  

                                                                 Tia makes for a smokin' hot redhead, though.

Maybe, just maybe, with all the scheduling conflicts and studio's financial collapses and reacting to shapes and numbers through a computer screen, it was time for Tia to step back into TV world. Inspired by the success of TOMB RAIDER, the UK put together Relic Hunter, a TV show working around Tia Carrere's archeologist character, Sydney Fox. Even though the show was rushed into production, and ran 66 episodes, I'm doubtful that it was anything short of an attempt to get Tia in outfits like this...

                                 

Hmmm, a little KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL action going on there, am I wrong? The series was filmed all across Europe, as well as overseas, as it's set in many different countries and time periods. It was a lot like Tomb Raider, only without the gameplay and therefore, none of the fun. With the exception of moments like this accidental sixty-nining position with her co-star Christien Anholt.

                                           Did I mention my envious hatred for that lucky bastard, Christien Anholt? 

      

I get that the show was trying to be silly, and directed a lot of attention strictly towards how hot Carrere was at the time. Still, it wasn't a great show, and therefore, it eventually died. It's not as unfortunate as you think, because just about the same time the Relic Hunter was going downhill, Tia decided to pose for Playboy for fun (and cash).

And so the fantasies of many Wayne-oholics were fulfilled. She topped off the '90's like no other. Since Relic Hunter filmed it's last episode, Tia has lent her voice to numerous cartoons such as Johnny Bravo, Duck Dodgers, American Dragon, and let's not forget she did the voice of Nani in LILO & STITCH, but she hasn't made an appearance on film in over a decade. So what are we waiting for? Lets get a load of the whereabouts of this lovely Filipino, Spanish, Chinese Hawaiian hottie!

NOW:

Well, if you're like me, the first big difference you noticed is the change of face. It's nothing drastic, but it's clearly there. Also, if you're like me, you wouldn't mind porkin' that till next Thanksgiving. She hasn't seemed to change all too much otherwise, at least as far as these recent pics from the PARANORMAN premiere are concerned. It seems like all of her pics from the past couple of years vary from mildly hot to very hot. Why don't you be the judge and take a look for yourself?

                          

It could be the meth talkin', but I'd say she's still one fine looking wahine. Tia didn't quite dissappear Carmen Sandiego style after the "Archeologist Booty Hour" got dropped by the network. She went back to her roots and danced just like Lea Thompson would like to on Dancing With The Stars. Strange how they took the chick from WAYNE'S WORLD but they passed on the mom from BACK TO THE FUTURE. Oh well. And Tia didn't stop her reality television streak there. She's more recently been a contesant on The Celebrity Apprentice, in which she did rather well. She's been caught in tangled celebrity gossip by being accused of having an affair with her fist husband in 1999, which led to divorce. She got married again in 2002 and had a daughter, Bianca, and in 2010 divorced that guy for unknown reasons. She takes her daughter to a ton of animated movie premieres.

Overall, I'd say Tia Carrere is doing well. She won a Grammy for her music in 2009, and won another in 2011 (Best Hawaiian Music Album) for her album Huana Ke Aloha. She always seems smiley and energetic, which has probably helped her stay in shape after all these years. While she's been skipping around to different reality TV shows, she hosted a telecast for the Grammy Awards a couple years back with Wayne Brady, and she's made a ton of TV guest appearances on shows like Curb Your Enthusiasm and Nip/Tuck. Anyway, mahalo for all the hot memories, dream weaver. Tia Carrere, we salute you: SHAAA-WING!!!

Extra Tidbit: What do you schmoes think Tia Carrere scores on the Babe-O-Meter?

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10:16AM on 08/18/2012
Another tidbit for Ms. Carrere is that she also sang the song "I Never Even Told You" which was the end-credits soundtrack for Batman: Mask of Phantasm. A powerful song that goes with the theme of that Batman's movie. She's hot, even now she's still hot, and she can sing. Who wouldn't fall in love with her?
Another tidbit for Ms. Carrere is that she also sang the song "I Never Even Told You" which was the end-credits soundtrack for Batman: Mask of Phantasm. A powerful song that goes with the theme of that Batman's movie. She's hot, even now she's still hot, and she can sing. Who wouldn't fall in love with her?
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11:09PM on 08/17/2012
She was and still is amazingly hot, just smoking. I remember trying to find episodes of Relic Hunter and just loving the heck out of it, it was a pretty fun adventure series and they new their biggest draw would be putting Carrere in a variety of abbreviated outfits, so there was a lot of that. She was terrific as the bad gal in True Lies, a true femme fatale.
She was and still is amazingly hot, just smoking. I remember trying to find episodes of Relic Hunter and just loving the heck out of it, it was a pretty fun adventure series and they new their biggest draw would be putting Carrere in a variety of abbreviated outfits, so there was a lot of that. She was terrific as the bad gal in True Lies, a true femme fatale.
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8:07PM on 08/17/2012
I think puberty kicked in for me when I was watching Wayne's World and she showed up with that string bikini.

An all-timer for me. She'd give a dog a bone.
I think puberty kicked in for me when I was watching Wayne's World and she showed up with that string bikini.

An all-timer for me. She'd give a dog a bone.
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7:48PM on 08/17/2012
She was also in Showdown in Little Tokyo with Dolph Lundgren and Brandon Lee back in the early 90s, and she got totally nude (sex scene with Lundgren).
She was also in Showdown in Little Tokyo with Dolph Lundgren and Brandon Lee back in the early 90s, and she got totally nude (sex scene with Lundgren).
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5:06PM on 08/17/2012
This woman is so hot. Has been for years.
This woman is so hot. Has been for years.
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4:15PM on 08/17/2012
she is an all time dream girl
she is an all time dream girl
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3:20PM on 08/17/2012
Sweet mother of God I love this column. Tia is a babe then and a MILF tiger now.
Sweet mother of God I love this column. Tia is a babe then and a MILF tiger now.
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1:43PM on 08/17/2012

Timeless Dimepiece

She's been smoking hot since the 80's (even though I was born in '85). Wish I could see more of her in films. True Lies 2 with Arnie, perhaps???
She's been smoking hot since the 80's (even though I was born in '85). Wish I could see more of her in films. True Lies 2 with Arnie, perhaps???
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