The Underworld star stashed the phallus in her mum’s hand luggage while she was packing to return home to England after a film set visit – because she thought it would amuse her when customs officials found it.
But the actress’ make-up artist, who gave her the penis as a gift, persuaded her not to put her mother through the humiliation.
Beckinsale explains, “We’d sort of had a little bit of an argument and she was leaving… and my make-up artist had given me… for Easter – I don’t know why – this enormous penis… a rubber one… it was quite wobbly… It was definitely decorative… It wasn’t functional.
“I kept on stashing it in my trailer… and I thought, ‘I’m just gonna put it in her hand luggage when she goes to the airport and maybe that’ll somehow cheer us up,’ so I did that.
“I was gonna let it get to that point but my make-up artist was so horrified that I’d done it… I had to call her up and say, ‘Look, I’m really sorry, but just look in your bag.’ She went, ‘Oh my God, Kate, I can’t believe you’ve done it…. What am I going to do with it?’
“I think she had to somehow… dump it at the airport… She said she dumped it.”
Beckinsale admits she was taken aback by her mum’s shock because they have a family tradition of making penis jokes.
She adds, “I do like a penis joke… Doesn’t everybody… We have a tradition in my family now. Whenever I visit my mother’s house I always have to leave a banana and two apples, or whatever fruit she has, in a penis state in her fruit bowl… just so she thinks of me when I’ve gone.”
“My daughter was actually in an arts and crafts store the other day with my husband and she did it with some pretend fruit and vegetables, which is really bad because she’s only 13.”
That probably explains why the actress found her Golden Globes co-presenter Seth Rogen’s erection gag so funny on Sunday night (15Jan12) – Beckinsale could hardly announce the nominees in their category as she giggled at the actor’s saucy gag.