.: Charmed, we're sure! :.
"Imagine dealing with wolves, warlocks and goo-spitting demons on a daily basis. For Charmed Star Holly Marie Combs, its all part of the deal. Sara Graham met her onset in La and sat down for a long chat, a warm latte and a little girl talk"
Q: Do you believe in Magic?
Holly: Not in the way the show believes in magic. I believe more in mystical things and intuition. I believe in positive thinking, which is basically what spells are - repeated positive thinking.
Q: What's a day on the set like for you?
Holly: There's always some special effect happening. And we have to imagine all of this, like fireballs or frost or demons flying at us.
Q: Do you ever get used to that?
Holly: I think we have gotten used to it now, because they say the most ridiculous things to us. They say things like, "Okay, now the demon is going to explode and now he's dust." And we just know!
Q: Can you even see it?
Holly: No - we look at a green screen most of the time, and then they add in the effects after we do our stuff. Most of the time we don't even know what the demons look like.
Q: What do you do in your down time?
Holly: We site, we do crossword puzzles. Alyssa and I play Scrabble. And Alyssa makes me watch every talk show that's on at the time.
Q: Are you closer to "little sister" Alyssa than you are to "big sis" Shannen?
Holly: I'm equally close with both of them, but I've just recently become close with Alyssa. I didn't know her at all from before the series, but I'd known Shannen for seven years before. My boyfriend at the time was friends with some of her friends, and we just met that way.
Q: Were you a Beverly Hills, 90210 fan?
Holly: No, I wasn't really into it when I was a kid. I was more of a rebel when I was a teenager, but a lot of my girlfriends were into it.
Q: How about Who's the Boss?
Holly: I did see that, because I was younger then - I hadn't gotten into my rebellious stage yet. And it was great. As a girl growing up in New York, it was very easy to relate to Alyssa's character.
Q: Are the three of you like real sisters?
Holly: Yeah, we have that sisterly bond going. We spend so much time together that it's hard for it not to happen. Everybody tells Alyssa she sounds like me, and everybody tells me I sound like Shannen. And we have our own little inside jokes that nobody understands.
Q: Is is it nice to have "sisters" now?
Holly: It's really nice. I had surgery recently, and we shut down for two weeks these are life-and-death things when you really need people, and they were both there. It's nice. It's become this family atmosphere where we take care of each other. It is different than any experience I've had, but it's also a lot of fun. And we've all synched up our menstrual cycles. It's weird!
Q: Do you ever find yourself acting more like your character when you're giving advice to each other in real life?
Holly: Yeah, sometimes. Its weird for me and Alyssa because she's actually older than me, but she plays the younger sister. So it's weird to switch roles on TV, and give her advice as the old her sister when, usually, its the other way around.
Q: Unlike Piper, are you the responsible one amongst your friends and family?
Holly: I'd like to think so! Piper is so much more unreliable than me, mostly because she overreacts and is worrisome. She's always neurotic and always high-strung. I just don't have the energy to be like her all the time.
Q: What's the food like on the set?
Holly: It's bad! I think our budget on Charmed goes to other things like special effects. Our show is expensive to make, so the food is not so great. But I think it's so bad to discourage us from eating it. It's the Aaron Spelling diet plan!
Q: Was it very hard to adjust to Charmed after filming the drama Picket Fences?
Holly: Yeah, it was. On Picket Fences there were so many scenes where we just sat and talked and acted. And in Charmed there's so much action, which I thought would be fun and easy. I thought, "Oh, I get to kick some butt and run around and scream," but it's actually a lot more difficult than I thought. Running away from a demon you can't even see is hard to make look convincing. You have to be scared to death.
Q: Did you imagine Charmed was going to take off like it did?
Holly: No, we really didn't know. When it started, the network had hyped Felicity so much that we were on the backburner. So it was a nice vindication for us. We were like, "Ha Ha!"
Q: Does your family watch Charmed? Yeah, my mum watches it every week.
Holly: She'll call me and say something like, "That green sweater did not fit you. It was too big in the shoulders and it didn't look good."
Q: Are you the star of family reunions?
Holly: I am with the little girls, my little cousins, because they just absolutely love the show. They go to school and say "That's my cousin," but of course nobody believes them. But they'll say "No, Piper really is my cousin!"
Q: What's the biggest misconception about starring in Charmed?
People think its glamorous, but it's really not. It's us standing around in our boots and sweatshirts. The other day we were in wigs and false eyelashes and I guess the finished product looked very glamorous but, at the time, our eyelashes were aching from the glue, the wigs were itching, and all we wanted to do was tear them off. It's not nearly as glamorous as it seems -especially on Charmed. Usually I've got goo on me, or some kind of alien slime!
Q: Do you have a website?
Holly: Alyssa and I do. Her mum has her own company on the net called safesearching.com, which is a porn-free search engine. So you can look us up and find our sites and not see us naked, basically.
Q: That must be such a pain.
Holly: It's weird, as I've only been topless once, in one film. And there are all these other pictures floating around that aren't me. I'm almost okay with the one picture that is me, because what am I going to do? It is me and I actually did do it. But I didn't think at the time they would free-frame it into 15 different pictures!
Q: That must be the worst thing thought, when it isn't even you!
Holly: Well, it depends on the picture. (laughs) It really depends on the body!
(The last 8 photos are from the photo shoot, but didn't get printed in the magazine.)