Like many of the MK actors at the time, she was employed at Lakeshore Athletic Club in northern Chicago when Midway came calling in 1992 in search of martial artists willing to shoot digitized footage of the game's characters. Following fans' requests for a female character during early beta testing of MK, she was brought on board by Midway to play Sonya, who was a last-minute addition to the game.
After the success of MK, Malecki felt that she deserved a share of the profits after her uncredited likeness was also used in one of the backgrounds in Mortal Kombat II. In 1997, she filed a lawsuit together with fellow MK actors Phillip Ahn and Katalin Zamiar. The lawsuit was ruled in favor of Midway, stating that in Illinois, a claim for quantum merit cannot succeed where there is a valid, enforceable agreement between the parties.