By  on May 12, 2008

Eva Mendes, who is featured in the new Calvin Klein Underwear advertising campaign, is no newcomer to the iconic brand. She is a self-proclaimed aficionado of Calvin Klein G-strings, particularly a seamless microfiber Nude number she wears on and off the movie set.

"I wear the G-string because it's very nude in colors that blend in with your skin," Mendes said in an interview at the Calvin Klein offices in Manhattan. "I wear them all of the time on the red carpet and when shooting for a film because you don't see the [panty] lines. Actually, I'm wearing one right now."

Before being named in April to appear in a global ad campaign for Seductive Comfort that breaks this fall, the Cuban-American Mendes had a brief stint in the early Nineties as a model in Calvin Klein Underwear ads.

"It was when I was in junior high, or maybe high school," she said. "It was just the hottest thing ever. Kate Moss and Marky Mark were there. I recently did a film with Mark Wahlberg, 'We Own the Night,' and he's really a fine actor. But I still visualize him in his Calvin Klein underwear, who wouldn't? It's kind of fun looking at people in their underwear."

Mendes, who wore a strapless turquoise evening gown at the Metropolitan Museum's Costume Institute gala on Monday, said she felt "so fantastic, so appropriate."

"One of the things I love is a little drama, but I also like it when things that are clean and clear," she said. "I never want the drama to jeopardize the way I feel. And I love color on the red carpet. At the Met I felt very architectural, as if I was wearing a Frank Lloyd Wright building."

Mendes can relate to the theme of the new Met exhibit, "Superheroes: Fashion and Fantasy." She will star with Scarlett Johansson and Samuel L. Jackson in a comic book-inspired movie, "The Spirit," which was written in the Forties by the late comic Will Eisner. It's due to be released in January.

"Frank Miller, the director, told me to look at old films with Patricia Neal to get a feel of the characters," she said. "I play a jewel thief who's been married 14 times and kills every husband over a heist that's gone wrong or they get in the way, so I exterminate them. She's a fierce woman who's lost her father, a cop, and she's very antiestablishment and antiauthority, and lives her life as a man killer. It's a complete fantasy ride."In October, Mendes will be a leading actress in a remake of George Cukor's classic "The Women," which will also feature Annette Bening, Bette Midler, Jada Pinkett Smith, Debra Messing and Candice Bergen.

"I play Crystal Allen, the role that put Joan Crawford on the map in 1939," she said. "I'm a spritzer counter girl at a store and attempt to steal her husband, well, I actually do steal him from Mary Haines, played by Meg Ryan. I lure him in theory with my witty charm and bust size — the double whammy."

As for her next project, Mendes said she's been working on a movie called "The Heretic," a satire directed by Tim Robbins that will also feature Susan Sarandon and British actor Simon Pegg. However, the film has been "pushed back" due to the writer's strike earlier this year, she said.

Regarding her state of health following a recent stay in rehab at Utah's Cirque Lodge, where Lindsay Lohan also sought treatment, Mendes said, "I drink tons of water, three liters a day. At home, I drink Penta water because it goes down smooth for me and I can guzzle it down. If I'm not drinking enough water, I can see it in my skin and I have dark circles under my eyes. I'm really big on cardio and run outside, in the hills, and the stairs built in the Fifties all over Beechwood Canyon. I feel wonderful, so fortunate to have so much."

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