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Last Updated: Saturday, 9 June 2007, 14:18 GMT 15:18 UK
Paris Hilton's not-so-simple life
By Mark Savage
BBC News entertainment reporter

Paris Hilton
Hilton's CV includes several modelling contracts
"There is no sin in life worse than being boring," wrote Paris Hilton in her 2004 autobiography, Confessions of an Heiress.

It is not a sin the heiress-turned-model-turned-singer-turned-actress can be accused of indulging in.

A godsend to the tabloids, Hilton never seems to be far away from a raucous night out, a bitter feud with a former friend, or a relationship rumour.

Not that she savours her notoriety.

"Newspapers and magazines write that I'm spoiled and privileged and that all I do is dance on tabletops and party with my friends," she says in the opening page of her autobiography.

"Pretty much everything I read about myself is ridiculous."

Sex tape

Paris Whitney Hilton was born in 1981, the eldest child of Richard and Kathy Hilton.

An heiress to the Hilton hotel fortune, she was raised in a variety of luxury homes across the US - including a suite at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York.

Paris and Nicky
Hilton says her sister, Nicky, is her "other half"
After dropping out of school, she snubbed "snobby all-girl colleges" to sign with Donald Trump's modelling agency, and soon became a mainstay of the New York party scene.

With sister Nicky by her side, she was never far from a paparazzi lens - but it was a different type of camera that was to cement her celebrity status.

In 2003, a video of Hilton and former boyfriend Rick Salomon performing a sex act was "leaked" on the internet - just days before the her TV show, The Simple Life, made its US debut.

Her parents threatened legal action against anyone who distributed the tape, and the family issued a statement saying they were "greatly saddened at how low human beings will stoop".

I'm not having sex for a year
Paris Hilton in 2006
But the heiress's new-found notoriety turned The Simple Life into a huge success, attracting 11m viewers for the Fox TV network.

The programme stripped the heiress and her friend Nicole Richie of their credit cards and mobile phones and encouraged them to do an honest day's work.

Their shrieking antics and inability to cope with the real world was compulsive viewing for millions - but it sealed Hilton's reputation as a spoilt child.

She has since claimed she was deliberately playing dumb for the camera - taking inspiration from films like Legally Blonde and Clueless. But the reviews for her infrequent big-screen outings suggest Hilton doesn't possess the acting skills to pull off such a character convincingly.

Feud

Paris and Nicole
Hilton and Nicole Richie have made five series of The Simple Life
In 2005, former best friends Hilton and Richie fell out for reasons that were never disclosed.

A rumour that Richie had played Hilton's sex tape at a party was denied, but the heiress released a statement reading: "Nicole knows what she did."

"I didn't really understand what that was about, because we hadn't been friends in such a long time," Richie told Vanity Fair in 2006, shortly before the pair were reported to have reconciled.

Hilton's love-life has been similarly complicated. She was briefly engaged to fashion model Jason Shaw in 2002, and broke off another engagement to shipping heir Paris Latsis in 2005.

Last year, she told men's magazine GQ she had sworn to celibacy.

"I'm not having sex for a year," she said. "I'll kiss, but nothing else."

Her comments came as she promoted her latest venture - a pop career.

Hilton's debut single, Stars Are Blind, was a top 10 hit in the UK and her album, Paris, was called "shockingly listenable" by Rolling Stone magazine.

But it stalled on both sides of the Atlantic, and Warner Brothers says there are no plans for a follow-up.

Jail sentence

Paris at court
Hilton admitted to being scared before starting her jail sentence
Her career took another wrong turn last September, when she was arrested for driving under the influence.

She was fined and given probation, which she violated several times by driving with a suspended licence - leading to a 45-day jail sentence.

Despite being placed in a special facility reserved for celebrities and police officers, Hilton completed five days before being released for unspecified health reasons, sparking severe criticism.

"This lady has some severe problems", Los Angeles county sheriff Lee Baca said, opting to place her under house arrest instead. But a court overruled him and she was returned to jail a day after her release.

Just hours before she turned herself in, Hilton had been living it up at the MTV Movie Awards in Los Angeles.

"If you see pictures of me out, I'm being paid," she protested last year. "When I turn up at an event, it is work."

Despite the jail sentence, it is unlikely that demand for Hilton's unique style of employment will decrease in the near future.

At least, it seems, she won't be bored.




SEE ALSO
Paris Hilton must return to court
08 Jun 07 |  Entertainment
Paris Hilton released from jail
07 Jun 07 |  Entertainment
Hilton 'doing well' in LA prison
05 Jun 07 |  Entertainment
Paris Hilton starts jail sentence
04 Jun 07 |  Entertainment
Paris Hilton drops prison appeal
18 May 07 |  Entertainment
Paris 'ready to face punishment'
10 May 07 |  Entertainment
Paris Hilton gets 45 days in jail
05 May 07 |  Entertainment

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