Supermodel Kate Moss was only 18 years old when she was launched into the stratosphere in a series of advertisements for Calvin Klein. She starred in their perfume ad for Obsession, and also for Calvin Klein underwear alongside Mark Wahlberg who at the time was known as a rapper in Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch.
The 1992 Calvin undies spot, shot in black and white, was an iconic moment for fashion and pop culture, but as Kate retells it, she was not only scared of the Daddy’s Home star, she also felt objectified by him.
In an interview with BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs, the British beauty revealed her true feelings on the Ted star, noting that having to sit on his lap topless didn’t help her feelings of fright and objectification, especially at such a young age.
“Not very good memories,” she told host Lauren Laverne when asked about filming the commercial and magazine shoot. “He was very macho, and it was all about him. He had a big entourage. I was just this model.”
“You felt objectified?” Laverne prompted.
“Yeah, completely,” she admitted. “And vulnerable and scared … I think they played on my vulnerability.I was quite young and innocent, Calvin loved that.”
She also revealed during the interview that in the lead-up to the shoot, she suffered from "severe anxiety" and was prescribed Valium by a doctor.
"I really didn't feel well at all before the shoot. For like, a week or two, I couldn't get out of bed," she said.
This isn’t the first time she’s opened up about her true feelings surrounding The Planet of the Apes star. In 2012 she told Vanity Fair that Wahlberg was “such a d***head” and that the shoot precipitated a nervous breakdown when she learned she had to "go and work with Marky Mark."
For his part, the artist formerly known as Marky Mark has admitted that he wasn’t exactly a nice person in those days. He told The Guardian in 2020, "I never really had a problem with Kate… I think I was probably a little rough around the edges. Kind of doing my thing. I wasn't very... worldly, let's say that."
He continued, “But I've seen her and said hello. I think we saw each other at a concert here and there, we said hi and exchanged pleasantries."
Of course in 1992, his lack of worldliness was more widely known than it is now. In the 1980s, while his brother, Donnie Wahlberg, was an international pop sensation in New Kids On The Block, Mark was a troubled teen who took part in several racially-motivated hate attacks on the streets of Boston. According to The Independent, in 1986, 15-year-old Wahlberg physically attacked and verbally accosted groups of Black children on more than one occasion.
Then in 1988, Wahlberg served 45 days in jail after beating two Vietnamese men in the head while shouting slurs at them, leaving them for dead. Mark was charged with attempted murder. In 2014, he sought a pardon from Massachusetts state officials, but he dropped the pardon request in 2016, telling The Wrap at the Toronto International Film Festival that his request for a pardon was “ill advised.”