Take a dashing, wildly popular British sports star who wears diamond earrings and headbands, then add a beautiful pop singer who has a penchant for designer clothes, and you have created an English obsession.
Meet the Beckhams — 29-year-old Victoria, better known as Posh Spice of the '90s pop phenomenon the Spice Girls, and David, at 27, already a soccer legend with world famous Manchester United.
They're rich and glamorous, a match made in tabloid heaven. As Victoria Newton of The Sun, one of Britain's most popular tabloids, put it, "It was like a dream come true." Newton said, "They're now our royalty. Once Princess Diana died we didn't have anybody else to put on the front pages every day."
Bonnie Fuller, editor in chief of Us magazine, describes the pair as the J. Lo and Ben Affleck of the British world.
The couple's new multimillion-dollar estate in London, dubbed Beckingham Palace, is worthy of their status. They're enjoying the glow of life on the front pages, but Britain's most glamorous couple has learned some tough lessons about life in the spotlight.
"I think it … it's very, very difficult, because obviously everything they say isn't always going to be positive," Victoria tells 20/20's Deborah Roberts. David agreed, saying, "It's sometimes hard to cope with. But, you know, we've got used to it now. We understand that it's part and parcel of, you know, us being famous."
Indeed, fame on this grand scale is what Victoria dreamed of growing up in suburban London as a timid, awkward teenager yearning for stardom. "I wanted to be one of the kids from Fame. I just wanted to be famous. I wanted to be a dancer. Then I wanted to be a singer," she said.
Her dream was fulfilled nine years ago when she answered an ad to audition for an all-girl singing group, which would become the sensation of the decade called the Spice Girls. They struck gold with their first single and later went on to sell 40 million records.
Victoria was called Posh Spice, the cool, glamorous one. Though critics questioned whether she could sing, her striking presence would catch the eye of a certain soccer player who spotted her in one of the group's videos.
"I remember saying, 'I like that one in the short skirt and the bob. I've got to meet her,' " he recalls. And as formidable as he may be on the soccer field, David says he was intimidated by Victoria's glamorous world. "I'm a quiet shy person, and to be in that sort of circle, it's very intimidating," he said.
He describes their early romance as a bit of both love and lust at first sight.
The soccer player and the hot singer began dating secretly, dodging the paparazzi — but soon took their relationship public, generating mega-celebrity wattage.
David's new ritzy lifestyle was a long way from the East London working-class neighborhood where he grew up sharing his father's obsession with a sport known across the pond as football.
By the tender age of 16 he was recruited by Manchester United, now England's most successful team, and he quickly turned heads with his wild haircuts and astounding winning kick known as the Beckham bend — sort of like baseball's curve ball. It's even the topic of a hit British film, Bend It Like Beckham.