Jay Manuel was ‘horrified’ by race swap challenge on America’s Next Top Model

America’s Next Top Model star Jay Manuel was “slightly horrified” when contestants were made to “swap races” in a 2005 episode. The reality TV show and its creator Tyra Banks have recently come under fire from people watching old episodes of the serie…

America’s Next Top Model star Jay Manuel was “slightly horrified” when contestants were made to “swap races” in a 2005 episode.

The reality TV show and its creator Tyra Banks have recently come under fire from people watching old episodes of the series, with social media users noting comments and challenges which haven’t aged well, such as Banks telling a model to close the gap in her teeth and assigning models races or ethnicities for a photoshoot.

In an interview with Variety, make-up artist Manuel, who served as creative director between 2003 and 2012, admitted that the photoshoot made him feel uneasy.

“I was so, so, so uncomfortable with this. I was never scripted for my intros or anything, and I didn’t know how I was going to be able to set this up – I was so afraid that I would wear this because I was the creative director, but it was not my idea… I was basically told that I had to execute the creative, and it made me very uncomfortable,” he stated. “I was slightly horrified… There were just certain people working on the show in a senior position where several producers, not just myself, became very scared to speak up. I actually brought my concern first to another co-executive producer because I was too scared to even take it up higher to an executive producer.”

Over the weekend, Banks told her Twitter followers she agreed with the criticism of some “off choices” and the show’s co-creator Ken Mok insisted that “the entire creative team made the choices”.

Manuel told Variety that while he thinks “it’s a little unfair for people to persecute Tyra now,” the decisions ultimately came down to Banks and Mok.

“There were sometimes several objections by other producers and myself about layers that were added to creative, and we were just told to execute,” the TV personality said. “I think it’s a little unfair to throw the whole team under the bus.”

In the interview, Manuel also insisted it was his decision to leave the programme after Cycle 18 and he currently has “no relationship” with Banks.

He has written a novel titled The Wig, The B**ch & The Meltdown, inspired by his time on the show. It will be released on 3 August.

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Tyra Banks addresses ‘insensitive’ clips from America’s Next Top Model

Tyra Banks has responded to criticism over controversial comments she made on past seasons of America’s Next Top Model.Clips from the show have been resurfacing on social media lately, with fans taking a look back at some of the more cringeworthy momen…

Tyra Banks has responded to criticism over controversial comments she made on past seasons of America’s Next Top Model.

Clips from the show have been resurfacing on social media lately, with fans taking a look back at some of the more cringeworthy moments from the TV contest’s history.

Viewers have taken to social media to vent their frustrations at specific moments, including a particularly cruel clip from season six in back in 2006, in which Tyra tells hopeful Dani Evans that she will never make it as a successful model because of the gap in her teeth.

“Danielle, you went to the dentist but you refused to have your gap closed,” the host said to Dani, who eventually went on to win that season. “Do you really think you can have a CoverGirl contract with a gap in your mouth?”

“Yes, why not?” the young model replied, prompting Tyra to pretend to create a tooth gap with her finger: “This is all people see. It’s not marketable.”

However, the 46-year-old, who is also an executive producer on the programme, later took to Twitter to explain her comments.

“Been seeing the posts about the insensitivity of some past ANTM moments and I agree with you. Looking back, those were some really off choices. Appreciate your honest feedback and am sending so much love and virtual hugs,” Tyra wrote.

Dani also responded to the America’s Next Top Model incident and insisted she wasn’t surprised by the backlash because she’s “heard it all before”.

“So I’mma take this time to build up and to speak to all of my young queens that saw that episode that were truly affected by Tyra’s words… You’re beautiful,” she shared.

Other contentious moments include season 13’s “biracial themed” photoshoot, where contestants had their skin darkened, and season four runner-up Kahlen Rondot being asked to do a photoshoot in a coffin in a graveyard – just one day after her friend died.

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Ashley Graham fled New York for Nebraska just before coronavirus lockdown began

Ashley Graham took a 20-hour drive from New York City to her native Nebraska before the coronavirus lockdown kicked in.The model, who gave birth to her first child 10 weeks ago, had a feeling the Big Apple would shut down and took her mother’s advice t…

Ashley Graham took a 20-hour drive from New York City to her native Nebraska before the coronavirus lockdown kicked in.

The model, who gave birth to her first child 10 weeks ago, had a feeling the Big Apple would shut down and took her mother’s advice to get out of the city with her newborn son Isaac and husband Justin Ervin.

“I was like, ‘Let’s go’,” Ashley told Miley Cyrus during her appearance on the pop star’s Bright Minded Instagram Live show on Tuesday, admitting she’s so glad she took the drive across country.

“It’s been a breath of fresh air. I’m looking out now and I can see grass… I went for a walk.”

And the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit model has a positive way of looking at the lockdown, revealing if it wasn’t for the global pandemic she would be back at work now after her maternity leave.

“I’m having that time that I wouldn’t have been able to have…,” Ashley said. “I’m incredibly blessed.”

Ashley also revealed that a family friend lost his life to the coronavirus, but she and her family are well – and she is using her forced time off in Nebraska to focus on working out, eating well and “self-havening”.

“I learned it from my midwife,” she added, explaining it’s the practice of comforting yourself with hugs. “It teaches you touch and how to connect with self. All you’re craving (right now) is someone to give you a hug.”

The former America’s Next Top Model judge is also planning to learn Italian, so she can speak with her husband Justin’s family in Italy.

“I’m going to come out of this knowing a new language,” she laughed.

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Tyra Banks credits Cindy Crawford with inspiring her to branch outside of fashion

Tyra Banks was inspired by Cindy Crawford to pursue a career outside of modelling.In a new interview, the TV personality, producer, businesswoman, actress, and author has credited the supermodel for paving the way for others in the industry to establis…

Tyra Banks was inspired by Cindy Crawford to pursue a career outside of modelling.

In a new interview, the TV personality, producer, businesswoman, actress, and author has credited the supermodel for paving the way for others in the industry to establish their own brands.

“I kind of followed in the footsteps of Cindy Crawford, but just did it my way,” she told WWD. “I was very inspired by her. I remember reading an article saying she had a Revlon contract and an office in the Revlon building, and I’m like, ‘Wow, that’s cool.’

“I couldn’t really understand what that meant, but I know there was something powerful behind it. I liked that she took her name and made herself a brand and household name.”

However, the America’s Next Top Model host and creator went on to explain that she is pleased she gave Cindy’s career her own spin and headed into television.

“I added my own passions. It’s producing television and creating a talk show and now being the founder of ModelLand,” the 46-year-old added, referencing her upcoming modelling theme park

The unique attraction, which will give visitors the chance to live out their “ultimate modelling fantasy”, will open its doors in Santa Monica, California in May.

And Tyra said her vision for ModelLand was to give other women the tools to create their own careers in the fashion business.

“I like to say we’re like the Disney of fashion and beauty and self-esteem,” she shared. “It’s a place where everybody can be the fantasy versions of themselves.”

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Tyra Banks shares details of ModelLand theme park attractions

Tyra Banks has finally shared details about her modelling theme park, ModelLand.The model/businesswoman is set to open the unique attraction, which will give visitors the chance to live out their “ultimate modelling fantasy”, in Santa Monica, Californi…

Tyra Banks has finally shared details about her modelling theme park, ModelLand.

The model/businesswoman is set to open the unique attraction, which will give visitors the chance to live out their “ultimate modelling fantasy”, in Santa Monica, California on 1 May.

The 21,000-square-foot, multi-level venue will offer budding models access to photoshoots, beauty products, runways, shops, and workshops.

“I believe all shapes and all sizes and all ages and all shades deserve to feel beautiful, powerful, and be the fantasy versions of themselves. ModelLand is not just an attraction. It’s a place full of story that challenges what ‘attractive’ means,” Tyra said in a statement. “When you step into ModelLand, you enter a fantastical world where we celebrate your uniqueness while we help you master your angles and up your photo game. You are ModelLand’s star. Our cameras are waiting for you.”

Prices start at $59 (£45), with the general access ticket giving visitors a photo lookbook, as well as tips on how to take “industry quality photos” with posing tips and tricks from the America’s Next Top Model host.

The Fantascene Photoshoot package, priced at $549 (£424), gives guests a professional makeover, hair styling, and a “magazine-quality photoshoot”.

And the ultimate VIP experience, which Tyra calls the Fantascene Dream, will set visitors back a whopping $1,495 (£1,154). Guests will be treated to a personal consultation with a ModelLand fashion and beauty expert, along with a photoshoot.

The 46-year-old also revealed that every visitor will be automatically in the running to be discovered by the ModelLand Discovery Society and potentially get the opportunity to star in a professional cosmetics campaign.

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Tyra Banks never washed unflattering beach swimsuit

Tyra Banks has never washed the infamous swimsuit she was shamed for wearing over a decade ago.The America’s Next Top Model host faced harsh criticism for her fuller figure back in 2007 after paparazzi snapped unflattering pictures of her wearing the b…

Tyra Banks has never washed the infamous swimsuit she was shamed for wearing over a decade ago.

The America’s Next Top Model host faced harsh criticism for her fuller figure back in 2007 after paparazzi snapped unflattering pictures of her wearing the brown strapless one-piece, which featured colourful stripes across the breasts, on the beach.

At the time, she refused to be defeated by the harsh tabloid criticism, and donned the same swimsuit to host an episode of her now-defunct daytime series, The Tyra Banks Show, and slammed her haters in a defiant speech.

“To all of you who have something nasty to say to me or to women built like me… I have one thing to say to you: Kiss my fat a*s!” she declared.

During a recent appearance on U.S. chat show Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen, the 46-year-old revealed that she has never washed the brown one-piece and has since stored it in a personal archive.

“Oh my gosh it is totally in an archive,” she shared. “Oh my god, it is so there. And it still has like the oil and the sand in it. Like I did not wash it. I’m like, ‘It’s gonna stay stank and real’… I have a good archive.”

Last year, Tyra opened up about her hopes for her fellow models and said she was happy with how the fashion industry was now embracing diversity.

“What I’m hoping for is that the Ashley Graham’s, the Gigi Hadid’s, everyone is just models. Not plus, not short, not trans, not curvy. I just want it to be normal,” she shared. “I’m happy that the fashion industry is finally catching up.”

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Tyra Banks pledges to fight ‘oppression’ in modelling industry

Tyra Banks has candidly discussed her struggle against oppression in the fashion industry.In a video titled The UpriXing Begins, recently released to promote her new attraction, ModelLand, the model/TV host passionately tackles the problems she faced d…

Tyra Banks has candidly discussed her struggle against oppression in the fashion industry.

In a video titled The UpriXing Begins, recently released to promote her new attraction, ModelLand, the model/TV host passionately tackles the problems she faced during the early days of her career.

In the clip, Tyra pretends she’s having an argument with industry bosses while standing outside on a street, and is role-playing ending their toxic relationship.

“Twenty-eight years and now this. It’s always something with you. I was too skinny, then I was too fat, then my a*s was too big – oh, but you all about that now, huh?!” she fired, noting the trend of diversity in fashion in recent years. “Oh, excuse me? You loved me? Oh, you want to talk about the ’90s? Okay, let’s talk about the ’90s! Let’s talk about how I had to mix my own make-up colours because if I left it up to the people you chose for me, I’d look like an ashy clown.”

Tyra continued the lengthy tirade, and accused fashion leaders of having to change because “if you didn’t, no one would want your a*s.”

She ended the fiery video on a positive note by emphasising that she had overcome the setbacks in her modelling career to become a successful businesswoman who knows her worth.

“I am wise enough to know my beauty is not defined by you,” the 46-year-old added. “Beauty is all shapes and sizes. All colours and genders. Young and old. Tall and short. Thin and thick.”

Finishing the footage with an ominous threat to the fashion industry, Tyra claimed it was “payback time”.

“Every single day, I will continue to fight your oppression that makes people feel like c**p about themselves,” she stated.

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Ashley Graham uses acupuncture to sculpt her face

Ashley Graham has been using acupuncture to sculpt and contour her face during pregnancy.The curvy model has taken to her Instagram page to share her secret for relieving stress, and in a series of videos, showed fans footage of her undergoing the trea…

Ashley Graham has been using acupuncture to sculpt and contour her face during pregnancy.

The curvy model has taken to her Instagram page to share her secret for relieving stress, and in a series of videos, showed fans footage of her undergoing the treatment.

“We are sculpting into my cheek, into my jawline,” Ashley told her followers in the first video, as acupuncturist Sandra Lanshin, founder of Treatment by Lanshin, tells the camera: “Getting the muscle tension out… And then we’re going to sculpt, sculpt, sculpt.”

In another clip posted on Wednesday, Ashley mimics Santa Claus while the needles are in her neck and jawline.

“Ho, ho, ho, Merry Christmas!” she laughs. “It’s a needle Christmas.”

And in the last video, Sandra is seen taking out the needles, which makes Ashley briefly bleed in two places on her face.

“Oh well, it’s worth the sculpt,” the 32-year-old joked.

In the caption alongside the videos, Ashley explained that she’s been doing acupuncture throughout her pregnancy.

“I have to say it’s been keeping my body feeling so good! Yesterday, Sandra @treatmentbylanshin did a little face sculpting with the needles and I love the results!” she added.

Ashley is expecting a baby boy with husband Justin Ervin in January. The former America’s Next Top Model judge has regularly shared social media updates with fans throughout her pregnancy journey, and recently posted a naked selfie on Instagram over the Thanksgiving holiday.

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Pregnant Ashley Graham shares nude selfie

Ashley Graham has showed off her growing baby bump in a nude selfie on social media.The curvy model stripped off for the racy picture, in which she can be seen covering her chest with her hands while holding her phone in the other to take the photo, an…

Ashley Graham has showed off her growing baby bump in a nude selfie on social media.

The curvy model stripped off for the racy picture, in which she can be seen covering her chest with her hands while holding her phone in the other to take the photo, and posted the snap on her Instagram Stories on Thursday.

The former America’s Next Top Model judge shared the make-up free image alongside a series of photos documenting her Thanksgiving celebrations with family, friends, and her husband Justin Ervin in New York.

Filling up on the traditional turkey feast, Ashley – who was wearing an all-black ensemble with a cropped pink wool jumper – and Justin later got competitive with their loved ones as they played games.

The couple announced their baby news on their ninth wedding anniversary back in August, and the bundle of joy is due in January.

Ashley revealed the sex of her unborn baby in a recent interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show while she was participating in a lightning round of questions with the host.

“I’m having a boy!” she screamed, before waving her arms and exclaiming: “I’m gonna be a mommy to a boy!”

The 32-year-old has also been sharing details of her pregnancy journey on social media and has been honest about the impact her changing body has had on her mental health.

Speaking about posting an image that showed off her stretch marks during a chat with another mother for her new digital show, Fearless with Ashley Graham, the brunette beauty explained that she had actually been struggling with her “new body”.

“It’s interesting that you say that because the reason why I had posted that original photo, I had just announced that I was pregnant and I thought then I was going to feel good and I didn’t. I just felt terrible,” Ashley said.

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Tyra Banks once had to walk the runway with her shoelaces tied together

Tyra Banks has recalled the time she had to take “tiny” steps down the runway because her shoelaces were tied together.The supermodel launched her career at the age of 15, and after becoming one of the world’s top-earning names in the early 2000s, foun…

Tyra Banks has recalled the time she had to take “tiny” steps down the runway because her shoelaces were tied together.

The supermodel launched her career at the age of 15, and after becoming one of the world’s top-earning names in the early 2000s, found success in co-creating her reality TV series America’s Next Top Model.

While Tyra has appeared in numerous fashion shows over the years, in an interview with Footwear News, she remembered her worst-ever footwear fail.

“I did a fashion show when I was really young. I was 18 or 19,” she stated. “My dresser was dressing me really fast and I’m running to get to the stage. I get on the runway and my shoelaces are tied together.”

Even though most young models would have crumbled in the same scenario, Tyra took it all in her stride.

“I don’t know if my dresser was paid by someone to do that, but I ended up taking tiny little steps down the runway the whole time and I just made it a thing. (Afterwards), the designer was like, ‘Oh that was amazing,’ and I’m like, ‘My shoes were tied together!'” the 45-year-old laughed.

Tyra was recently named as the new global brand ambassador for shoe and accessories company Nine West. The model will front the Groudbreakers advertising campaign, as well as feature in marketing imagery throughout the next year.

“For years Nine West has helped women from all walks of life look amazing from the ground up,” she said of the gig. “It’s both inspiring and exciting to partner with a brand that is committed to empowering the modern woman and giving her the confidence to take on her nine-to-nine lifestyle in the fiercest fashion.”

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