Speaking of Ella Drake, I have it on good authority that the first New Zealander to ever walk a Gucci exclusive is flying to Auckland from Sydney right now to shoot an episode of New Zealand's Next Top Model. According to a well-placed source, Drake is this season's celebrity-model guest judge. Sydney based model Nikki Phillips who played the part last season will not make an appearance this time around. Getting Ella Drake is a small coup for New Zealand's Next Top Model. She might not yet be a household name here in New Zealand but she is one of the only Kiwi girls working in the big leagues internationally right now. Her presence will inject a much-needed dose of credibility to the show, which, as a franchise, often errs on the side of flash and hype rather than concerning itself with the realities of the industry. According to my source, Drake will stay in New Zealand for a little over a week before flying out to Sydney, and then Europe later next month. 62 Models and Talent, the agency that represents the winner of Top Model and Ella Drake, declined to comment.
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