July 17, 2010
July 17, 2010
(Dani appears at 4:39)
Source: ABC News
July 17, 2010
‘Next Top Model’ Marvels At Her Win
(CBS) Danielle Evans was just named “America’s Next Top Model,” after winning the sixth installment of the hit UPN reality show.
Evans, 20, of Little Rock, Ark., now gets to sign with Ford Models, a $100,000 CoverGirl contract, and a spread in Elle.
“What can I say? My life has completely changed. It’s amazing,” she told The Early Show weatherman and features reporter Dave Price on the plaza Friday.
She overcame some daunting obstacles to make her way to the title, including dehydration and cosmetic dental surgery.
(Update: The video is no longer posted.)
July 17, 2010
America’s Next Top Model 6: Interview With Danielle, 5/23/06
After a strong showing throughout the competition, Danielle, the 20-year-old babysitter from Little Rock, AR, was crowned America’s Next Top Model. She faced some unusual challenges during her time on the show; namely, a bit of a “southern twang” (as she puts it), and a gap in her front teeth that seemed a mile wide to the judges. She emerged with a modified smile, and after some time with a dialect coach, a pleasantly well-spoken demeanor. My personal opinion is that she’s the show’s best winner to date, so excuse me if I got a little fangirly in this interview. I have to admit that I was thrilled at the chance to speak to Danielle.
Good morning, Danielle!
Oh, thank you!
It’s so cool to talk to you, Danielle! I think you’re the most fantastic winner the show has ever had. How does it feel to know you are America’s Next Top Model?
Oh, thank you so much! It’s crazy! I’m loving it! I’m soaking it all up. It’s a whirlwind right now, but I love it!
We’re a website with over 38,000 members called Fans of Reality TV – have you ever stopped by to see what people are saying about you?
Yeah, I’ve checked it out a couple of times.
You went through every challenge and photoshoot, made it to then end, and pulled out a beautiful CoverGirl shot. How did you keep your focus throughout the competition?
Oh, thank you! Just my drive – I was looking at the prize at the end. It’s a long, long haul that we all went through, and that’s what kept me going, just the fact that I’ve wanted to model for eight years, and I wasn’t going to go on national television and just quit. My drive is definitely what kept me going.
You didn’t seem to be very emotional as the competition went on, but when they announced you were the winner, there it all was on your face. How did you keep it all under control until the end?
I was, I really wasn’t trying to get too caught up in missing family and everything like that. I was really, really focused on that I came into the competition not for my fifteen minutes of fame, but to literally become the supermodel that I’ve always dreamed of becoming. So I think that’s what definitely helped me keep my emotions under control. But then at the end – woah. Every emotion just came out at the end.
Don’t you think it’s funny that the two girls with teeth issues were standing in the finale?
(laughs) I do! And I thought about that when I was on the show, I was like, “Hmmm, me and Joanie, we’re the ones who had to go to the dentist and have our teeth fixed.” It was kind of crazy to me.
We know you loved your gap before, and you refused to close it at first, then compromised on a modified gap. What do you think of your teeth now?
I’ve gotten used to them. It did take me a while to get used to the smaller gap. I’ve had a gap all my life, and growing up, no, I didn’t necessarily like it, but the older I got I became more comfortable in my skin. I saw, and still do see, my gap as being a signature trademark. I am glad that I did compromise. I think life is about giving and taking and compromising, so I’m glad I met the judges half way and got it closed a little bit.
Which photoshoot did you like the best, or that you think came out the best?
I loved the beach shot in Phuket. I love being on the beach, and I want to be like a Sports Illustrated model one day, so I really love being on the beach.
Oh, I think that picture will open a few doors
Yeah! (laughs) I love that picture.
On the episode with the insanely tall platform shoes, you actually looked pretty good until you fell at the end. How badly were you hurt?
Oh, that did hurt pretty bad. What happened was when I fell inside with the judges, that wasn’t the worst part. My ankles were kind of weak and they were hurting, but it was when I fell back behind stage, that’s what did the damage. My pinkie toe came out of my shoe and kind of twisted. That’s why I couldn’t get back up and walk off – I had to crawl off. I think a few people thought I was joking when I was saying, “Ow ow ow ow,” but that was all real. My pinkie toe swelled up really bad, so they decided to put me on crutches so I could walk back out there. It didn’t help that the shoes were so big on top of being so tall. They gave me a size 10, and I wear a size 9, and it’s not easy to walk in a bigger heel as opposed to a smaller one.
How long were you out of commission?
The doctor wanted me to keep a shoe off for a complete week, but there was no way I could walk around Top Model without a shoe on. I gave it I think a day and a half. I put a flip flop on and kind of hobbled. I mainly walked on my heel, but it hurt so bad to put complete pressure on my toe, so after a few days I would just walk on my heel instead of flat on my foot.
You also got dehydrated in Thailand, are you drinking 8 glasses of water per day now
Actually I think just the whole fact of not being able to take care of my body, being under the stress that I was under, and not being able to get enough sleep, throughout the competition I could feel my body kind of slowly shutting down. When I was in Thailand, I remember saying to Furonda – I don’t think they showed this – but I said to Furonda, “I think I have something, I feel like my body is about to shut down.” And immediately when I stood up, it was like I had to just grab my knees because I was about to fall down. The doctor said the biggest thing was exhaustion and dehydration. I was just on the go all the time and I wasn’t able to take care of myself the way I would’ve liked to.
But seriously, how were able to handle these physical challenges and not let it keep you from performing well in the competition?
It was hard. I didn’t want to leave the hospital bed. I did realize that I really didn’t need to stay in the hospital. But I thought about my mom a lot. She has rheumatoid arthritis. She works at a daycare, and she goes to work every day even when she’s in pain, and she never complains. I just thought about my mother and drew inspiration from her. And also just the fact that my drive wouldn’t let me. If I relaxed and stayed in that hospital bed, then that probably would result in me getting eliminated. So my drive wouldn’t just let me stay. I had to get up and keep going.
It seems like you got through the competition without a lot of personality conflict with the other women in the house. Is that true, or are there hours of footage on the cutting room floor showing Danielle in a rage?
No, that’s true! I did get along with all of the girls. They all took to me from day one. I’m pleased with that – I’m glad that I didn’t really have any drama with anyone. I don’t really like confrontation and drama. I try to stay away from it as much as possible. It’s not necessary.
How about we talk about the other girls in the house? I’m going to read off some names of the other women in the house, and if you could, I’d like you to tell me what you thought of them in a sentence or two.
Jade: I think Jade just wanted to make a statement, honestly. First off, Jade is really, really good people. The last episode when we were in the bottom two, they didn’t show it, but when I hugged her, she whispered in my ear, “Go win it.” Jade’s really good people. I just think that because she’s 26, it is hard being in the modeling industry after a certain age, so I think she was trying to make a bold statement that she’s the girl that needs to win the competition because she needs to get her career started. She is good people.
Joanie: Oh, she’s so genuine. Just a really nice, genuine person.
Mollie Sue: Oh, my Mollie Sue! Me and Mollie Sue were best friends in the house. She’s great, funny, hilarious – we just immediately clicked. I think our personalities just clicked so well. She’s so goofy, and I’m goofy, so our personalities went well together.
Are you guys still Kitty and Petey?
We are still Kitty and Petey forever! We’ll always be Kitty and Petey. (wistfully) I miss my Petey! (laughs)
Nnenna: Nnenna is really intelligent. She’s a chemist! That says a lot. She’s really intelligent.
Furonda: What’s a great word to describe Furonda? (thinks) I would say over-the-top.
Over-the-top in a good way?
Yeah, in a good way. It’s not a bad thing. I just had to really learn and know who she was in order to get used to her personality. She was the one wearing a crown around the house every day. (laughs) I think she was trying to make a statement with unspoken words, too, you know? That’s why I describe her as over-the-top.
By the last episode, Joanie was telling the camera how sick of Jade she was. Did you ever get to that point with Jade?
No, I didn’t. I was just honest-to-God’s truth so focused on Danielle! It’s like, if anyone in the house did have a problem with me or anything, I was never aware of it because I wasn’t worried about the girls to my left and right. I was completely focused on Danielle. I think a lot of the girls in the house got so caught up with what the other girls thought about them. Something like that, I think it just really blocked them from the competition. They would take that into judging and into the photoshoots, and I think that it really hindered them in the competition.
So nobody in the house drove you nuts, and if they did, you didn’t let it get to you?
No, no one in the house drove me nuts, seriously. My day would consist of waking up in the morning, praying, and going to get my day started. At the end of the day, going back into the house, I literally would just get into bed. I would talk to my mom if the phone was open, but if it wasn’t, I would just go to sleep. And that’s how my day was every day.
Can you tell us about the judging sessions?
They can be really grueling. I think I was the only girl who didn’t get nervous going into judging sessions. I know the judges told me a couple of times that the fact that I was able to go in there and just be myself and just leave my worries at the door – I think I was so relaxed in judging because I knew that the day before in the photoshoot I gave 110%, and I can’t give any more than my best. I realized, “Okay Danielle, if you ever go in judging and it just so happens that you do get voted off, it was just your time to go because you gave it your all the day before in the photoshoot.” But I think a lot of the girls wore their feelings on their sleeves, maybe, and took what the judges said to heart, maybe a little bit too seriously. I was able to let it roll off my shoulders. I did take heed to it and I worked on it, but I didn’t let it upset me to the point where I couldn’t go on to perform the next day.
Tyra made such a big deal about your accent. I might point out that I found your accent charming, and you always used correct grammar. Malapropisms and incorrect grammar – you know, like Jade’s manner of speech – seem like a much worse sin to me than your accent. What do you think about all the emphasis they placed on the accent?
(laughs) It was difficult to hear them say that, because I am from the South and my southern accent is part of my character. I was born and raised in the South, and I do have pride in that. I don’t think that everyone in the world should sound like they’re from LA or somewhere in the West, you know. I do plan on my flaws being my strength later on in my career, my southern accent being one of them. I don’t have any animosity or resentment toward the judges now. I do understand the fact that they were saying to be a spokesperson, you can’t have an accent. I do very much understand that. But, it was kind of difficult for me at the same time, knowing that there are some Brazilian models that have an ad campaign as spokesmodels, and they have a Brazilian accent! I can’t understand why I was being criticized so harshly because I have an accent from the South.
I would say Nnenna has a very strong accent, and she didn’t get that criticism.
Right, right! That’s the thing I was trying to figure out. If you’re going to be criticizing accents, why isn’t Nnenna be criticized? Is it okay because you’re from another country? I think an accent is an accent, regardless of what part of the country you’re from.
And there are plenty of top models who don’t even speak English!
Exactly! That’s my thing, yeah!
At the beginning of the season, Nigel Barker gave an interview where he said that the winner has to have face, has to have walk, and has to have talk. He must have been hinting about you. Did they make you work on the accent?
Yeah, when I got home, I worked with a dialect coach for a while. I think the main thing, just me watching myself on television every Wednesday, just seeing how strong of an accent I did have. Probably the best thing for me is to just slow down when I talk and enunciate my words more clearly to eliminate some of the southern twang that I have.
Age wasn’t mentioned during the competition, but do you think being younger than Joanie gave an edge when it came down to the final two?
I really don’t think so, because I don’t think the judges had that in the forefront of their minds. I have no clue. I think it just came down to performance, maybe. I still really don’t know what the judges saw in me over Joanie. Obviously, I’m very pleased and happy with the outcome, but it’s hard to say from week to week what the judges were looking for.
You and Joanie were so different in style that it’s hard to see what put you over the top against her. What do you think the judges gave the most weight to?
I have no clue, and I never asked. It was like, “Danielle, you are the winner,” and I was like, “Okay, I’m going to take it and run with it!” (laughs) I never really asked questions, I was just so happy about it.
What was the hardest part of the experience
The reality side of television. I think I was one of those people in reality TV who honest-to-God did not sign up for my fifteen minutes of fame. It took me by shock when I realized everything that goes into a reality show, you know, the cameras, the editing, and all that stuff. It was just like, “Woah.” That was the most difficult part.
What do you think of the judges now, especially Tyra?
Tyra is my mentor now. I can call her and she gives me advice, and she’s there for me. I really look up to her. Obviously, I’m very thankful because she’s the woman who helped start my career. I don’t have any resentment or anything towards her. Anything that happened on the show is left on the show. I look up to her in a lot of ways.
I saw some pictures of you and Tyra on the red carpet, and kapow! You look incredible, right on par with Tyra (or even dare I say it, outshining her a little). What was that like?
That moment was great! That was one of the moments where it really sank in: I am America’s Next Top Model. It was my first red carpet, and having all the photographers scream my name, “Danielle, look left! Look right!” That was amazing. If I could get up in the morning and go walk the red carpet before my day started, that would be great. I loved being on the red carpet. It was amazing.
What prizes have you won, and can you tell us a little about where to expect to see you?
I won $100,000 contract with CoverGirl! I’m the new face of CoverGirl, I’m promoting the new Lash Exact mascara. I will be signing with Ford modeling agency, and I will be living in New York! That’s really great, because once a model makes it in New York, she’s officially made it, so I’m really excited about that. I’m going to be having a spread in Elle magazine shot by Gilles Bensimon.
Thanks to UPN for granting the interview, and many congratulations to our newest America’s Next Top Model, Danielle!