Tyra Banks Faces Backlash For Shaming 2004 'ANTM' Contestant's Natural Look

Actress Yaya DaCosta spoke on the moment while highlighting colorism today. 

Recent cultural and political incidents have many sharing discussions on colorism and blackness, with actress Yaya DaCosta reflecting on a disturbing moment she had on America's Next Top Model.

Many may remember DaCosta from the 2004 cycle of the series for her Afrocentric vibe and stunning photos. While a fan favorite, the then 22-year-old was painted as arrogant and cocky to viewers. On Saturday (Jan. 13), the actress shared two clips on her Instagram; one of herself on ANTM and the other, a clip of Love & Hip Hop Miami's Amara La Negra. Both women are shunned for their natural looks.

"People keep sending me videos of Love & HipHop Miami, saying that it reminded them of me as a young girl, learning to navigate the new phenomenon of reality TV," she said of the clips. "Unfortunately, 14 years later, nothing has changed. Same ignorance, new show."

The clip of DaCosta is where the girls had to choose hats to reflect their personal style. While many expected the model to pick up the kenti-designed kufi cap, she picked up a cowboy hat instead. "It looks like you're about to ride a giraffe," judge Nolé Martin said, while judge Rebecca Weinberg stated, "You have this intensity to prove your blackness, and I think sometimes it's overbearing."

With her voice shaking, DaCosta attempted to defend herself, which was interpreted as condescending. DaCosta made it to the next round, but was told by Tyra Banks, "This [photo] is amazing, but what's not amazing is your appearance. Think a little more glamour as opposed to natural." She was also forced to apologize to the judges for criticizing the kufi cap.

A post shared by Yaya (@yayadacosta) on

A post shared by Yaya (@yayadacosta) on

"It took a lot of work to heal from that experience, and looking back, I feel so much for that eager, vulnerable young version of myself," DeCosta said Saturday. She also gave props to La Negra, who has been praised for standing up to a producer who shamed her natural hair. "There are so many things I would whisper in her [email protected] I truly applaud your strength. As another brown-skinned, curly-headed woman with African roots and Latin branches, I stand with you."

In an effort to cater to the Instagram generation as well as changing fashion standards, brands have somewhat embraced natural looks to bring in more consumers. Banks has yet to comment on the video, but made a statement on her blackness.

DaCosta has moved on from the modeling world and has made a name for herself on the big and small screen with roles in The Butler, Chicago Med and the starring role in Lifetime's Whitney Houston biopic. 

She also spoke to The Root recently about her big chop. "I cried, I hugged and kissed myself; it was amazing. And I never looked back," she said. "There’s so much that has happened since [then] that I know would not have been possible had I been weighed down by the weight that I was carrying; the toxic relationships, other people’s expectations of me, safety, hiding, not feeling beautiful without it. ... One of the things that I cut off as well was fear, and in doing so, realized how guided I was, not by love or confidence, but fear."

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Netflix, HBO Max Acquire Streaming Rights To ‘Chappelle’s Show’

Dave Chappelle’s self-titled sketch comedy show is headed to streaming services. The popular series will hit Netflix and HBO Max on November 1.

“The best news you’ve heard all year: Chappelle’s Show is coming to Netflix US,” the streaming giant announced on Friday (Oct. 30).

The best news you've heard all year: Chappelle's Show is coming to Netflix US pic.twitter.com/yMOOaf3BDA

— Netflix Is A Joke (@NetflixIsAJoke) October 30, 2020

HBO Max acquired Chappelle’s Show, Inside Amy Schumer, Reno 911, Nathan For You, and Key & Peele in a non-exclusive licensing deal between ViacomCBS and the Warner-media-backed streaming outlet, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The deals expands on a previously forged $500 million deal between HBO Max and Comedy Central for the streaming rights to South Park.

Chappelle’s Show aired on Comedy Central from 2003-2006. The series came to an abrupt end after Chappelle famously walked away from a $50 million deal with the cable network. The comedian stepped out of the spotlight for a while before re-emerging, and eventually signing a $60 million Netflix deal.

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Omari Hardwick Details Dialing Into His Ugly Flaws For 'Spell' Horror Film

Omari Hardwick is adding "star in a thriller film" to his career accomplishments. After six seasons of playing the fan-favorite James "Ghost" St. Patrick on Starz's hit series Power, he's reemerging onto the big screen as Marquis T. Woods in Paramount's new flick, Spell. His character, an accomplished lawyer, takes his family on a trip to his hometown of Appalachia to attend his father's funeral. After his plane crashes in the midst of a storm, Woods wakes up wounded in a Hoodoo witch's lair and tries to escape Ms. Eloise (Loretta Devine) torturous "healing" to rescue his family before they are sacrificed in a dark magic ritual.

While sitting down with the movie's director Mark Tonderai (House at the End of the Street, Hush), it didn't take much convincing for Hardwick to make a decision around being involved with the project. In fact, it was what Tonderai said about his past onscreen roles that sealed the deal.

"He really, he really lit a fire under me. He said, 'They're all great. They're all good. You've done your part. But I don't know if you've really, really shown all that's in you,'" Hardwick shared with correspondent Jazzie Belle in a sit-down interview with VIBE. "He said, 'Yeah, you've shown so many different colors as an ex-football player, but there's just this layer to you that when I look at your eyes. I see a guy that can really go to a very, very broken, broken vulnerable place, and we haven't seen it.' And I want to take it upon myself to be the director to get that out of you.' And when he said that, that's what did it for me."

In the challenging development of his character, Hardwick admitted he had to dig deep into the unpretty parts of himself to authentically deliver his role and gave the same advice to a younger family member looking to start his career as an actor. "I said, 'I need you to go back into it, and quietly do it...You'll keep that coolness going, but you'll find that swagger, even more, when you get really, really cozy with the stuff you don't like about you.'

"That's what had to happen in this movie. I got right with stuff that I was not really cool with over the years...When I got the role, we didn't know COVID would be here. But now that we're here, I'm glad that I thought, 'Okay, Omari, you got to go real broken. You got to go real ugly.' And so that process was not very easy for me, because unlike [my] 20-year-old cousin, I'm so far from that. I've tried to get away from everything ugly about me, but I had to go so deep back into it."

Watch the full video interview above and see a couple of written highlights below. Spell is now available on premium video-on-demand platforms and screening in select theaters.

On what made him gravitate toward this movie genre:

Definitely the bucket list check-off of trying to get to the point in my career where I can say I've done damn near every genre, if not every genre, so this definitely was a check for that. I didn't want to get down with just horror. I knew that feeling of what every comedian made us laugh about, and saying, "When we look at the scary movie the black people gone in five minutes!" I knew what that felt like and I didn't necessarily (laughs) want to become that in the world. I think at this point in my career, you know, I don't think I would have gotten the script where I'd be taken off the board that quick if it was just horror. But when you add the psychological thriller to the horror, then I think it's the right sort of combination of two for me to say yes to....for me to say yes to.

On lessons learned while working with Loretta Devine:

I would say the constant attention to detail. I think the elder statesman and the elder stateswomen of our industry...they tend to be so detailed-oriented because they had to be. And they didn't have access to as many things as we do. So I looked at her in a way of, "Am I in method? Yeah, I'm in method." She was constantly studying, and it kind of makes you go like, "I guess I should study."

The [one] scene is like, I don't know, like six hours of just her leaning over and telling me about voodoo and hoodoo and what it all means. And yet, in between takes she's like grabbing her script. So there were times I would just stare at her like, "Wow, it's the detail." But Snoop Dogg once said he wants to be the weakest in a room. And he said, "I'm real strong." So to know you're real strong, but yet you want to be the weakest in the room, that's what it felt like being around Loretta. Like man, I thought I worked hard.

On whether he ever believed in any superstitions:

Being an athlete, for me, it's like, I believe in, once you win, you can't change much of what you were wearing when you won. There are definitely moments where I never washed my socks for a long time because we were winning. I believe in that stuff, man. And that's swampy. You talking football, basketball, I mean, baseball, I played in those, all three of those sports I played, all in high school. So there were moments where definitely you could see teammates stopping by my locker and doing a double-take like, "Damn, O." There's definitely that. (laughs)

Interview's music bed provided by Gus.

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Kenya Barris To Make Directorial Debut With Richard Pryor Biopic

Kenya Barris has signed on to write and direct a forthcoming biopic on Richard Pryor for MGM. The movie studio acquired the film in a heated bidding war, Deadline reports.

The biopic will mark Barris’ directorial debut. In addition to directing and penning the script, the Black-Ish creator will also produce the film through his company, Khalabo Ink Society. Additional producers include Pryor’s widow, Jennifer Lee Pryor, through her Tarnished Angel imprint, and Tory Metzger for Levantine Films.

“The way Pryor did what he did — with truth and specificity that was somehow self-aware and self-deprecating, and said with an unmatched level of vulnerability – that was the power and impact of his work,” Barris said in a statement. “Pryor had a voice that was distinctly his and, in many ways, comedy since then has been derivative of what he created. To me, this is a film about that voice, the journey that shaped it, and what it took for it to come to be.”

There have been several attempts to bring Pryor’s story to the big screen, including in 2016 when The Weinstein Company teamed with Jennifer and Lee Daniels on a script by Oscar-winning screenwriter Bill Condon. Mike Epps was slated to start as the comic legend, and Oprah Winfrey was going to play his grandmother, Eddie Murphy as his father, and Kate Hudson at Jennifer.

Pryor began his comedy career in the early 1960s playing local clubs around New York. By the following decade, Pryor rose up the ranks to become one of the most popular Black comedians in the genre appearing in films like Lady Sings the Blues, The Mack, Uptown Saturday Night, Car Wash, Harlem Nights, and The Wiz. Pryor was also a talented writer and producer (he wrote his stand-up comedy specials as well as other shows such as Sanford & Son, The Richard Pryor Show).

The 65-year-old comedian passed away from Parkinson’s Disease in 2005.

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