Gemma Atkinson is quitting modelling in a bid to boost her acting career.

The ex-Hollyoaks babe and I’m A Celebrity… contestant is a lads’ mag favourite, often posing for raunchy underwear shoots to show off her 36E curves – but she has told The Sun she now wants to be taken seriously as an actress.

Gemma, 24, said: “I am not doing any shoots this year, I finished Hollyoaks, which was amazing, but I don’t want to do soap again – I want the next step up.”

The former Ultimo lingerie model from Bury, Greater Manchester – who has been cast as beautician Elaine in the West End production of Calendar Girls – has even had elocution lessons to hide her Northern accent.

She said: “You can’t just expect to have done a Channel 4 soap and become a movie star, so I have had to start all over again.

“I made a decision to take a year out from the modelling. I wanted to audition and take acting classes – I want to start afresh.

“I have been coming down to London to meet with my acting coach and to have elocution lessons. Then I went to the States and worked over there.

“I think the lads’ mags might have been a bit disappointed. I will still do my calendar, which is different, as it’s my own styling, my own team.”

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