Jennifer Lesley Ellison (born 30 May
1983) is an English actress, glamour model, television personality, dancer
and singer. Ellison, who was born in Liverpool, is perhaps best known for
playing Emily Shadwick in the television soap opera Brookside until 2003
and has recently made appearances in many different television shows, and
as Meg Giry in the 2004 film adaptation of The Phantom of the Opera.
Ellison is currently featured in Maxim magazine's Girls of Maxim gallery.
She has appeared regularly in almost all of the mainstream British "lads'
magazines" over the last eight years, though her first appearance was in
1999 in a sexually suggestive shoot for FHM at the age of just 16, under
the heading "Jailbait". Recently, Ellison took over a contract with
lingerie giant Ultimo for its "Young Attitude" line from fellow model
Jordan barely two months after she had been signed on. Though Ultimo boss
Michelle Mone had chosen Jordan for being "sexy, fun and outgoing," she
later changed her mind, stating, "Jordan was just the wrong choice for
[us]. Jennifer is a far better option and far classier." In 2005 Ellison
was voted "world's sexiest blonde" by readers of the UK magazine Nuts,
beating model Victoria Silvstedt, who came second, and pop superstar
Britney Spears, who was voted third. Ellison is also a regular in the
yearly FHM "100 Sexiest Women in the World" feature. She first appeared in
2003 at number 60; then at number 29 in 2004; by 2005 she was at number
17; in 2006 she was number 31; in 2007, she fell to number 87; and in 2008
she did not feature. Her drop down the list over the last two years is
largely attributable to her taking a break from modeling from late 2006 to
early 2008. However, she has since returned to modeling. She won the Rear
of the Year award in 2008.
Ellison studied dance from the age of three, first at a dance school in
Liverpool, then later at the Elizabeth Hill School of Dancing in St.
Helens, Merseyside. She has achieved examination passes with the Royal
Academy of Dance and appears on the RAD's instructional video for the
Intermediate Foundation syllabus. She has also taken examinations with
International Dance Teachers Association and also won Ballet and Modern
Dance titles at the IDTA Theatre Dance Championships in in 1996 and 1997.
Choosing to pursue a professional career in dance, she successfully
auditioned for the Royal Ballet Lower School, but was asked to leave after
two years due to a large bust, which ruined her lines for classical
In 2006, Ellison released Jennifer Ellison's West End Workout, a fitness
DVD which combined her love of dance with exercise routines.
In 2007 Ellison was a judge in the British reality TV competition Dirty
Dancing: The Time of Your Life.
She is a winner of the Carl Alan Award for outstanding services to dance,
an industry award voted for by dance professionals.
Ellison had a run in the London West End theatre version of the musical
Chicago in 2004 at the Adelphi Theatre, and returned from 10 July to 9
August 2006 again playing the leading role of "Roxie Hart", this time at
the Cambridge Theatre. Ellison was actually supposed to finish on 12
August, but was forced to pull out three days early due to a knee injury.
Ellison subsequently toured England in Chicago from 25 September 2006
until 5 May 2007, appearing in Birmingham, Manchester, Sunderland (she
switched on the Christmas lights there), Nottingham, Southampton,
Stoke-on-Trent, Liverpool and Edinburgh.
On 1 October 2007, Ellison joined the cast of a revival of Boeing Boeing
at the Comedy Theatre, London, playing the part of Gloria, an American TWA
On 5 December 2007, she featured in a 10th Anniversary Gala performance of
Chicago at the Cambridge Theatre alongside a galaxy of stars and on 16
December 2007, she played "Angel" in Liverpool Nativity, a contemporary
retelling of the Christmas story for BBC Three which was performed live
from the streets of the City.
Ellison featured in the Liverpool Empire Theatre's Christmas Pantomime
Cinderella for 2008 opposite Cilla Black and Les Dennis.
She also played Beth in Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of The War of the
Worlds at the major arenas of the UK in June 2009.
Ellison made her international movie debut as Meg Giry in the 2004 film
version of The Phantom of the Opera. In spite of this being her debut in a
Hollywood movie, Ellison has yet to make another American film. She also
starred in the British horror movie The Cottage, which was released in the
UK on 14 March, 2008.
It was announced in early 2009 that Jennifer has been cast in the Barbara
Windsor type role in the upcoming Carry On relaunch Carry On Bananas.
Filming is due to start later in 2009.
Ellison has also flirted with a pop rock career. Her first single was
"Baby I Don't Care", released in June 2003, which reached number six in
the charts. The song was originally released by Transvision Vamp in 1989.
The following year in July, after being brought back into the public eye
after winning Hell's Kitchen, Ellison released her second single, "Bye Bye
Boy"- a song from the Japanese singer Nanase Aikawa- which reached number
13 in the UK charts.
In 2003, Ellison appeared in the travel documentary Jennifer Ellison does
Thailand and in 2004 she appeared on the reality television show Hell's
Kitchen, which she then went on to win. In 2005, she appeared on the
celebrity challenge show With a Little Help From My Friends for ITV.
In spring 2007 Ellison appeared in the BBC reality TV show The Verdict,
based on a fictional courtroom, alongside the likes of Jeffrey Archer and
In 2007, she appeared as a judge on Dirty Dancing - Time of your Life a
United States based reality television show for the Living TV network.
In December 2007 Ellison began appearing as a guest panellist on the ITV
daytime show Loose Women. Ellison has also acted in episodes of the
British television series The Brief, Hotel Babylon, New Street Law and The
In September 2008 she appeared in a 2 hour long show, called Ghosthunting
with Paul O'Grady & Friends, filmed in Sicily, with fellow Liverpudlians
Paul O'Grady, Philip Olivier and Natasha Hamilton.
She is a former girlfriend of Steven Gerrard, the Liverpool and England
Dated Liverpool businessman Tony Richardson from 2000 until 2007.
She married boxer Robbie Tickle in Mauritius on 10 October 2009, and are
expecting their first child in January/February 2010. The couple started
dating in May 2008 and got engaged on holiday in the Maldives in October