‘America’s Next Top Model’ Apparently Recruited Potential Contestants on MySpace
When it comes to reality TV shows, America’s Next Top Model is one of the most memorable ones. Contestants competed to become a high-fashion model, and some behind-the-scenes stories show how intense the competition could get.
‘America’s Next Top Model’ saw contestants compete for a contract with a modeling agency
America’s Next Top Model premiered in 2003. Model Tyra Banks created and hosted the show. Each season, a group of wannabe models would compete to become “America’s Next Top Model.” They participated in photoshoots and challenges that tested their dedication to winning.
The winner received a contract with Elite Model Management, a contract to become a model for CoverGirl Cosmetics, and a spread in a fashion magazine like elle or seventeen. Thousands competed to be on America’s Next Top Model. But some recent audition process stories show how unglamorous trying out for the show could be.
One person claims ‘America’s Next Top Model’ recruited them on MySpace
One person revealed in a BuzzFeed article that they were “recruited to audition for America’s Next Top Model via MySpace,” a popular social media platform in the early 2000s. That is interesting, considering most of the aspiring models auditioned to be on the show, sending in videos or attending casting calls.
These casting calls were apparently not a good environment, either. In the same article, one person wrote about what those open calls were like. “They had a whole bunch of girls line up chest-to-back against three walls, and we were all so squished, worse than sardines.”
“The girl behind me tried to block me from being seen by Tyra, who was on the computer screen [video-calling into the casting call],” they went on. “She was the only one who was chosen. She didn’t make it on the show. I was mad I was blocked, but it was for the best.”
Former ‘America’s Next Top Model’ contestants speak about their treatment while on the show
If auditioning for America’s Next Top Model sounds tough, actually competing on the reality TV show was even harder. Many former contestants have spoken out about their treatment on the show and at the hands of Banks.
Dani Evans, a contestant from Cycle 6 of the show, was pressured to have the gap between her two front teeth closed. Evans refused, which led to some tension between her and Banks. A video of Banks repeatedly asking why she wouldn’t have her gap closed recently went viral. Evans took to Instagram to address the situation.
She said it was clear Banks thought having the gap between her teeth closed would be “good for TV.” She said the incident “carries weight and [it] clearly affected a lot of young girls in America after watching it.”
In Cycle 4 of America’s Next Top Model, Keenyah Hill notified Banks that a male model on the show was sexually harassing her. Instead of receiving support from the show’s host, however, Hill said she was told to use her “feminine wiles” to defuse the situation in a way that “doesn’t really put static in the air” [per BuzzFeed News].
Viewers point out problematic photoshoots and handling of issues in ‘America’s Next Top Model’ episodes
Others have slammed America’s Next Top Model for problematic photoshoots, including having some contestants do blackface and insensitive handling of issues like eating disorders and disabilities.
America’s Next Top Model is still considered a classic 2000s reality show with many memorable moments. But today, it is viewed as a largely problematic show that did not treat its contestants respectfully.