Lohan has so completely embodied the current cultural fascination with young Hollywood starlets gone wild—the Paris Hilton types, conspicuously consuming, frantically text-messaging on rhinestone-encrusted cell phones from inside big Mercedes-Benzes, boozing, dancing, tanning, popping out of dresses, making out with high-profile lotharios—that when she scrunches into the corner of the sofa, hugs her knees to her chest and talks candidly about her dad, it comes as a delightful surprise to find that she is, after all, about 10 percent vixen and 90 percent sweet kid. But kids in show business grow up fast, and Lohan, who at age three became the first redheaded child model signed to Ford, has long since surrendered the right to a normal adolescence. And, media be damned, she’s not embarrassed about being a party girl.
“I’m the type of person who doesn’t really hide anything,” she says. “I go to clubs and everything, and if I hang out with Paris Hilton, I don’t think that’s a bad thing. She’s a nice girl. I relieve my stress by going out and having fun. Some people may go and take a yoga class, but people don’t care about that. I’ll be in L.A., and if I drive to the gym, they take that picture but they never use it because that doesn’t sell. Because people like the drama. That’s kind of what Hollywood’s become in a way, as sad as it is, especially for younger girls.” She tries out a disapproving baritone. “'Lindsay’s 18 and she’s at a club and she’s probably drinking.’ And, ‘Oh, she was seen making out with Colin Farrell.’ I mean, I like older guys. It’s easier for me to relate to an older guy. I have a career, and, maturitywise, to be with a guy that’s in college, it’s going to be a little difficult. I mean, we have 18-year-olds that go to war, and they can’t even have a drink. So what does that say about society? I mean, what does it really say? So then when you have an 18-year-old in Hollywood, at a party, and maybe she sees drugs on a table&.”
If Lohan seems especially candid, it’s because scandal clings to her as tightly as her white cotton T-shirt (no bra) clings to her famous breasts. Whether they’re real is only one question she’s prepared to answer; there are rumors about cocaine, anorexia, husband stealing, diva behavior on the set, a nervous breakdown. “Even the doctor today,” she begins, then moves back to the baritone. “He was like, ‘Are you anorexic? Are you making yourself throw up? Are drugs involved?' And I was like, ‘Are you saying this because you’ve read it in magazines?’ Because I don’t!” She scratches her new tattoo, a tiny star on the underside of her wrist. “People lose weight when they grow up; they lose their baby fat. But, you know, I’m around girls, even in the movies, that are like, ‘I don’t feel good, I just ate a lot, I’m going to go throw up.’ Like at the Vanity Fair shoot of all the young stars, no one ate. I was going straight to the pasta, and the other girls were eating salad. And I’m the one who people say that about.”