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Paz de la Huerta: 'Everyone in my family is a bit of an exhibitionist'

Wonderwall, Tuesday, February 15, 2011, 4:51pm (PST)

Paz de la Huerta has made headlines lately for her mostly nude scenes in "Boardwalk Empire" and her drunken sloppiness after the Golden Globes. And luckily for us, Wonderwall caught up with the much-buzzed-about actress at Fashion Week during the Diesel Black Gold Fall Winter 2011 runway presentation in New York. See what Paz had to say about being an exhibitionist, her love for fashion and how Zac Posen befriended her in junior high.

Wonderwall: You are in your birthday suit pretty often on "Boardwalk Empire." Are you just totally comfortable with your own nudity?

Paz de la Huerta: If it's for a scene … you know, if I'm filming … I'll do it. No problem. I mean it's like art. I feel like we all have flaws, and I embrace mine. I have a big scar on my back, and I'm still fine with my body. You shouldn't have to focus all your attention on having to look a certain way. That's the way I was raised. My mother was a super-feminist and worked hard for women's rights around the world. She let me know I wasn't defined by just my body. And everyone in my family is a bit of an exhibitionist. I've always felt very free. And I was sick as a child, so I had to learn to be comfortable in my own body.

WW: How did the Lucy role come about? Did you expect for it to be such a big hit?

Paz: I auditioned for the part and I was cast. I worked very hard for the role. Many a girl wanted this role. My business is so competitive, so many girls auditioned for that role. I continue to work very hard on the role.

RELATED: Paz and more of the most famous stripteases

WW: What part of yourself do you bring into your role as Lucy?

Paz: Everything I do, I have to bring out aspects of myself [for] that role. It's just like I have to channel whichever emotion I am feeling at any given moment into the character. You always have to be honest as an actress -- it's a way of manipulating what you're feeling at any given moment and making it work for the scene. I still go to acting classes. It's like if you play the guitar, you need to always practice playing the guitar. If you're an actress, you need to practice. I go to yoga as part of my practice. It keeps my heart open. And you have to be very healthy; you have to drink lots of water to take care of yourself and body [because] it's your only instrument as an actress.

WW: What we can expect from the new season of "Boardwalk Empire"?

Paz: We are about to start the second season and it will be full of surprises, especially in Lucy's life, but I can't tell you what.

RELATED: Find out which of your favorite celebs have been hitting Fashion Week

WW: What do you think is more "Paz," acting or modeling?

Paz: I'm an actress to the heart. Even when I'm modeling I have to create a story, create a scene. I become the character. I do it with the photographer to make it real for me.

WW: Tell us about your friendship with Zac Posen. You've known each other since you were kids?

Paz: We met in high school. Actually, he was in high school and I was in seventh grade. I was this awkward little skinny thing, and I only wore leopard print, and he became my first friend. He was like, "You're cool, and I want to be your friend." And this was at a time in my life when I really needed a friend. I really wanted a friend, and Zac became that person. I felt very alone. He's like my brother, my heart.

RELATED: Learn all about 'Boardwalk Empire' on MSN

WW: You're also Zac's muse. What's harder: walking the runway or dressing for an awards show?

Paz: I would say movie premieres or award shows. You have to worry about hair and makeup getting done. And you got to choose the right dress. You have to hope that people like it and that you make a statement. And when you show up for a modeling job, you just have all that done for you. And you have all your beauty sleep and you're not stressing.

WW: Speaking of makeup, is it true that you always match your lipstick to your dress?

Paz: That's such utter bulls---. I just wear whatever lipstick I feel looks good at the time. I'm not going to wear a green dress and wear green lipstick. No, that's not true. I don't know where that came from.

WW: How do you feel about the viral video of you being slightly inebriated post-Golden Globes?

Paz: That's not going to happen again. You know, we all have moments. It was 5 a.m., everyone was totally wasted and they just happened to be following me with a camera. And I learned a big lesson to not ever drink on an empty stomach again.

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