Stallone Is Hers Alone

updated 08/02/1993 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 08/02/1993 AT 01:00 AM EDT

SYLVESTER STALLONE'S CAREER HAS been a yo-yo these past few years, reaching a low with 1992's Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot., then snapping back up with this summer's high-altitude hit, Cliffhanger. But for the last five years, the one element that has been on solidest terra firma is his steady relationship with model Jennifer Flavin, 24. She is, for sure, his greatest fan.

The former Rocky's now 47-year-old body is "flawless" says the golden-haired, 5'9", 120-lb. Flavin, sitting in the airy living room of her rented two-bedroom condo in Manhattan Beach, Calif. "I look for fat when he's sleeping at night, and I can't squeeze any. And he's got a perfect behind. It's like a little peach."

Wait: There's more. "He's funnier than any comedian I've ever met. He'll pretend he's Sylvester the Cat."

And more more! "He's so smart. He writes, he sings, he paints." In fact, one of Stallone's abstract paintings is hanging in the stairwell. "I consider him a Renaissance man.

Their relationship, of course, is not without its flaws. "In the morning, he tells me what's wrong with my body," she says. And there was that time when, hard at work on a script, Sly turned up in a grumpy mood. "I was eating Gummy Bears," says Flavin, "and he had told me not to eat candy. He started screaming at me for eating them. He broke a plate and threw the Gummy Bears at me."

But that unpleasantness is forgotten when the phone rings. "Hi, honey," she coos. "Going golfing today? I love you too. Call when you finish."

At the time she was introduced to Stallone in 1988 by a mutual friend at a West Hollywood restaurant, Flavin was a fledgling model, studying psychology at Cal State-Northridge and working part-time al a tanning parlor. Sly, surrounded by a bevy of beauties, asked her what she did for a living. When she told him, she recalls, "these women started laughing." But Flavin wasn't intimidated: "I wasn't like, 'Oh, my God, it's Stallone!' I didn't care to be on the arm of a famous man." Soon, though, his humor charmed her: "He goofed on everybody that walked through the door." A few days later, they went horseback riding together.

When Jennifer, the sixth of seven children, was only 11, her father, Donald Flavin, a postal worker, died of a heart attack at age 47. "He was a big, protective figure," says his widow, Shirley May, who was left to raise the kids in the San Fernando Valley while working three jobs. "Maybe that's why she likes an older man."

She certainly likes Sly's lifestyle and his generosity (a Cartier watch, a Mercedes, living-room furniture for her mom)—but for Flavin what really counts is fidelity. "We date exclusively," she says, denying Hollywood rumors that Sly is quite the ladies' man. "We wouldn't have a relationship otherwise." So if he was monkeying around? "I would leave, definitely."

Though she and Sly have talked marriage, "I'm not desperate to have a home right now," says Flavin, who finds herself in great demand for European modeling jobs. Slaying physically fit and Gummy-free—that's the challenge now. "It's a problem," she says, eyeing the well-stocked candy dish on her coffee table, "that I have to get over."

TOM GLIATTO
JOHN GRIFFITHS in Los Angeles

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