Monday, November 10, 2008
Photo: 62 Models
As I mentioned last week, I'd be very surprised if the TV3 execs behind New Zealand's Next Top Model didn't get international model cum stylist Atip Wananuruks involved with the show in some capacity. The straight talking Englishman is a regular fixture on the New Zealand fashion scene, well known for his almost floor length dreadlocks which he wears piled high on top of his head.
When I asked him last week however, Wananuruks insisted that he had not been approached by anybody regarding the show. But that's all changed according to a phone call I had with him this evening.
I was alerted late this afternoon that TV3 had been in contact with Wananuruks, so I gave him a call to find out what was going on.
Here's what he told me:
"I have not [had a screen test] yet, as soon as I get hold of the guy, yeah [I will]. I got a call from John McDonald last thursday, but I haven't been able to contact him since though because I've been away in Christchurch. I don't know [which role I'm screen testing for], he just said...Sara [Tetro] has put my name forward and he wants to get me in to meet me and to have a screen test and see where they can go from there."
Wananuruks moved to New Zealand from the UK four years ago with his Kiwi wife Maddy. Together they set up Maw, a fashion retail store (and clothing label) in the old Pink Pussycat brothel on Auckland's Karangahape Rd. They now run MADE on Custom St. Wananuruks is also Senior Fashion Editor at Black Magazine (don't try typing in www.blackmagazine.com – I had a rather awkward moment at work testing that one out), and frequently works as a freelance stylist for other NZ based labels.
Wananuruks' modelling career began when he was 18 years old in the UK, and he told me last week that his most exciting moment was "walking for Comme des Garcons Homme Plus at the Fall 00 Paris menswear shows". (He also did stills campaigns for Top Man among others.)
An ex-international model (who worked with blue chip clients), stylist and exotic non-New Zealander, Wananuruks ticks all the boxes for Next Top Model judge eligibility as far as I'm concerned.
More on this as it progresses.