Star March 8, 1988

Dressed to Kill
By Anne Eaton

The hot new cover girl is just a baby doll from the 7th grade

At an age when most girls haven't begun to experiment with makeup, Milla Jovovich is jetting around the world to glitzy fashion assignments, leading the fast-track life of a well-paid model.

She has been on the covers of a dozen leading international fashion magazines in grown-up poses, which is hardly surprising for a red-hot model - until you consider that this one is only 12 years old.

Milla's a junior-high miss wearing to-die-for clothes that cost a fortune. Not that she'd bat a lash if she had to buy them - because she earns $3,500 a day. Hailed as the new Brooke Shields, the globe-trotting schoolgirl is one of the hottest properties on the international modeling circuit.

Yet when the morning alarm rings, even if she's been out until the wee hours the night before, Milla is back to being an ordinary seventh grader.

"I just came back from New York yesterday," Milla said after returning to her Beverly Hills home. "Actually it was today at 3 o'clock in the morning. I slept for a couple of hours. But it seemed like I slept for five minutes, when I heard my mom coming into the room saying 'Milla, you're going to be late for school!' "

Milla claims a model's life is "fun -- but it's hard."

She explains: "You always have to think about how you can please the photographer. You have to look your best and watch how your hair looks, and you have to be careful not to touch your face and not mess up your hair."

But when she's not working on a modeling or acting career, she can let her hair down like other California girls -- going to shopping malls with friends and taking music and dance lessons

"I try very hard to make her weekends as normal as possible," says her mother, actress Galina Loginova. "I make sure she's around people her own age, and I spend a lot of time driving Milla and her friends back and forth all over the Beverly Hills area."

On weekends, Milla sheds her haute couture for all-American sweats and jeans. "I wear ripped jeans sometimes," she says. "I mean, it's kind of cool to wear ripped jeans, but usually I wear work shirts and sweat pants.

"I play the piano and the guitar," she adds. "I take ballet and jazz dancing and I used to take tap, but right now, I'm really busy, and it's kind of hard for me to do everything at once."

Her father, Dr. Borgi Povovich, is a physician, and her mother was a Russian film star.

They brought Milla to the United States in 1981. The family settled in Beverly Hills and enrolled 5-year-old Milla in the local public schools. She learned to speak perfect English in three months, and soon blossomed into an American dreamgirl.

"School is very important," says her mother. "I make sure she doesn't fall behind when she's on modeling assignments."

Milla has already appear on 10 magazine covers, including Mademoiselle, French Elle, German Stern, and British Face. She will soon be seen in British Vogue and Vogue Bambini.

Her agent, Jeffrey Dash, says Milla is such a success because she chooses only the cream of modeling jobs.

"Milla doesn't have to take everything offered her," Dash says. "That's why we have turned down all but the best assignments. And we can afford to do the less profitable but more prestigious covers."

Having taken the modeling world by storm, Milla next hopes to become an actress. She remembers visiting sets where her mother was filming in Russia, and she loves the great Hollywood stars, especially Vivien Leigh and Clark Gable. "I really like the classical actors more than the new actors," she says. "Of the new actors, I want to be as good as Jack Nicholson. My favorite movie was The Witches of Eastwick.

"My other favorite was Cleopatra with Elizabeth Taylor. I'm very interested in Egypt. In fact, if I can't be an actress or a model, I want to be an Egyptologist."