Face-to-face: Life's a spin for model, television anchor, DJ and Bond girl Catherine McQueen
Modesty has an irresistible allure; when it comes from a tall and lissome Bond girl, it is even more alluring. Catherine McQueen admits her reputation as a Bond girl is misplaced. “The role is so tiny that if someone blinks his eyes, he will miss it,” says the Scot, referring to “Die Another Day” (featuring Pierce Brosnan), in which she plays a Russian model. But, without exception, clubs in India play up this “tiny role”, while advertising their events featuring Catherine as DJ. So, recently presspersons trooped into Blend at Taj Mount Road to find out how a Bond beauty ended up in a DJ's cabin.
“The 2007-08 Writers Strike (spearheaded by the Writers Guild of America) crippled work in the studios. In Los Angeles, out-of-job television personnel were hanging out at coffee shops. As an unemployed TV presenter, I had to choose between whiling the day away quaffing coffee and finding an alternative employment.” Catherine turned her hand to DJing. It has stayed on the turntable ever since, despite commitments as model, television presenter and actor.
Catherine's career as presenter includes shows on Sky Two, ITV1 and Channel 4; she has done much work on sports and gaming shows. With self-disparaging humour, she explains: “After I landed work at ESPN, everyone began to believe that sports presenting was my forte.” She enjoys appearing on television, but is careful not to repeat mistakes such as ‘The Celebrity Five Go Dating' show (on Channel Five). “I had a horrible time on the show. How can you date when cameras are thrust into your face?”
When 16, bagging the Elite Model Look title opened up a modelling career. “Persuaded by my parents, I continued my studies. I am glad I did.” Thanks to a degree in law and business, Catherine was signed up for a law programme, her first as a television presenter.
Catherine is as passionate about modelling as she is about everything else she does. Assignments include those for Dior and Chanel. Around seven years ago, a calendar for the Taj Group brought her to India for the first time. “I posed, dressed as a girl of the 1940s,” she says, adding that the visit was an eye-opener. It helped her appreciate the best India offers.
Multifaceted Catherine travels extensively on work. It seems to have moulded her personality. There is a lot of appreciation in Scotland for this global citizen. In 2004, Scotland on Sunday, an Edinburgh-based broadsheet, ranked her fifth on its Most Eligible Singles' Chart. The Bond girl mumbles self-effacingly: “I don't know how they found me!”