Gigi's secrets are revealed
By GARRY WILLIAMS 30mar03
Dad and me: Gigi Edgley and her famous father Michael embrace the limelight.
Picture: Tim Carrafa
MICHAEL Edgley's daughter is about to eclipse her father in the fame stakes.
Gigi Edgley, 25, makes her debut in The Secret Life Of Us next week, a role
that could put her at the top of the celebrity circuit in Australia.
But the daughter of one of the nation's most high profile promoters is no stranger to fame.
She has earned a cult following in the United States with her role in the sci-fi series Farscape.
Although Farscape did not take off in Australia, despite being made in Sydney, it built up a massive following in the US and Britain - and Gigi's character, "space trollop" Chiana, was a fan favourite.
"I was at a US convention and saw a line that ran across the room and out the door," Gigi said. "I asked if Buffy the Vampire Slayer was here and I was told, 'No that's the line for you (to sign autographs), dear'.
"It was madness," she said, producing an action figure of her character out her bag.
"I couldn't believe all the merchandising. I was on plates, and forks, comic books - you name it."
She admits her dad was not impressed when first told of the role.
"After I did Water Rats a few years ago, I played a junkie, a hooker, then an alien. And Dad said, 'When are you going to get some real work'?"
But Gigi said her father could not be more supportive and, unlike many celebrities with famous parents, is happy to talk about him.
It was her idea to have her father in a photo shoot for the Sunday Herald Sun.
"He made me what I am, why wouldn't I want to talk about him?"
"We are so open with each other. I ring him every time I have a problem. He's on the end of the phone going, 'What am I, the bloody complaints department'?"
Gigi said she was destined to go on stage.
"I never stopped dressing up and playing make-believe," she said.
"You couldn't help it with my home life. With dad's job I was living with circuses, living with the Marcel Marceaus, living with the Tina Turners and the Olivia Newton-Johns.
"There was a lot of plate-throwing, but there was also a lot of love.
"My parents split up a long time ago, but it's hard to tell. They're great mates. They gang up me all the time. They are complete opposites - my mum (Jeni, a former Miss Australia) is into alternative lifestyles and is always telling me to follow my passion, while dad has a work-till-you-drop then work-some-more ethos - but they both give great advice."
Gigi's character in The Secret Life Of Us, George, is an industrial design student. She returns from overseas to rekindle her relationship with Christian (Michael Dorman). But there is a unexpected romantic twist coming up.
Gigi's other TV credits include the recent critically-acclaimed telemovie BlackJack, starring Colin Friels.
She played Friels' daughter, Liz, confined to a wheelchair because of spina bifida.
"It was good meaty role," she said. "I did a lot of research interviewing women who suffered from the condition. It must have been intense for them with this fit, young chick coming in and asking them if they can go to the loo or make love."
Ten has commissioned three more scripts for BlackJack based on the success of the original.