The former prostitute who hit headlines for her famous 1995 encounter with Hugh Grant has publicly thanked the actor for "changing" her life because she was able to carve out a "wonderful" new existence after the scandal.
The British star was publicly shamed when he was arrested in Los Angeles with Hollywood hooker Divine Brown and she went on to land a series of lucrative publicity deals to talk about her experience with the actor. Brown, real name Stella Thompson, quit prostitution after the furore and now lives comfortably in Atlanta, Georgia after her estimated $1 million earnings set her up financially.
And the 41 year old admits she will always be grateful to Grant for giving her a second chance at life, insisting she felt like Julia Roberts' character in 1990 film "Pretty Woman". She tells Britain's Daily Mail, "That was the trick that changed my life. The event that earned me a million dollars... the fuss afterward scared me right there and took me off the game."
"I have the most wonderful life now. I've got a nice new home... there's no pool but there is a picket fence. I thank the Lord everyday... I was always attracted to the glamorous life and that half an hour with Hugh Grant made me able to buy all the things I'd dreamed of having. That film 'Pretty Woman' seemed to be what my life was about. Hugh Grant was my Richard Gere."
And Brown is convinced the embarrassing incident actually worked in Grant's favor, because he went on to carve out a highly successful movie career. She adds, "I know he helped to upgrade my future and my family, but I upgraded his, too. He got more recognized and more movies after that night."