THE former actress and model once known as Kate Fischer has posed for a revealing photo shoot for New Idea magazine, admitting she “changed her mind” after previously insisting she was a private person who wanted to stay out of the media.
The 42-year-old, who legally changed her name to Tziporah Malkah after embracing Orthodox Judaism, looks happy and healthy in a three-page shoot for the latest issue of the women’s mag, out today, accompanied by an interview in which she opens up about her new life.
“Life is much more rewarding now,” she says of her new role, working night shifts at an aged care home. “I wish I’d done this kind of geriatric psych work years ago.”
As Fischer, Malkah was a true 90s ‘It girl’, with a starring role in controversial Aussie film Sirens, a ton of modelling work and a high-profile five-year-relationship with billionaire businessman James Packer. She launched a bizarre attack on her ex in posts to her public Facebook page earlier this month, declaring that Packer — from whom she split in 1998 and who has been married twice since — “will do ANYTHING to continue to be associated with me!”
In her New Idea interview, Malkah — who moved to LA after their split to try to make it as an actress — admitted her relationship with Packer had “cast a long shadow”.
“I had to put up with false rumours that I got multi-millions out of splitting from him. Once, I was at the supermarket when someone yelled out: ‘Nice job, getting 10 million bucks for lying on your back, Kate!’ I’d hear those types of awful remarks for years.”
Malkah cleared up rumours about her so-called ‘multimillion-dollar’ payout from Packer, explaining that in fact she was given the house they’d shared plus an extra few hundred thousand dollars.
Malkah was thrust back into the spotlight earlier this month when rival mag Woman’s Day published unflattering pictures of her, wrapped in a bedsheet and collecting her mail, apparently unaware she was being photographed.
Malkah says she was initially “shocked” to have been targeted.
“But then I got so much support from people, it was really heartening. Really, why should anyone feel ashamed about how they look when photographed without their knowledge?”
While she insisted after her initial tabloid coverage that she was “no longer desirous of being a public figure,” Malkah took to her public Facebook page today to explain to her followers why she’d changed her mind and opted for a lingerie photo shoot.
“Well. I’ve done something that no woman has ever done before or will ever do since: change my mind! I’ve received and continue to receive so much positive feedback since I was essentially body-shamed by a nasty publication,” she writes.
“As “Kate” I had a zillion minutes of fame but as Tziporah I reckon that this is my 15. I do live a simple life now and the paparazzi can only get so many pictures of me in my work outfit or mismatched pyjamas! So why not do something that helps people within this tiny time frame? There is always opportunity within crisis.”
“I don’t advocate fatness or thinness, but some of us fight the good fight in regards to our weight all the time. It can be mentally all-consuming and very draining- particularly if there are other stresses and distractions going on in one’s life.”
Asked by New Idea what advice she’d give to her younger self, Malkah issued what seemed to be a pointed jab at her ex: “Don’t go round kissing goannas hoping they’ll become princes!”