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HOME > America's Next Top Model > America's Next Top Model: Guys & Girls

Exclusive: 'Top Model: Guys & Girls' runner-up Marvin Cortes talks (Part 2)


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 11/22/2013 

America's Next Top Model's male model Marvin Cortes finished the twentieth season as the runner-up during The CW's finale broadcast of the first-ever Guys & Girls edition.

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Marvin, a 6' 1" 20-year-old sales associate from Bronx, NY, was defeated by Jourdan Miller, a 6' 0" unemployed 19-year-old from Bend, OR, after Top Model judges Tyra Banks, Kelly Cutrone and Rob Evans evaluated and scored both contestants' entire body of work throughout the course of the season. Contestant Cory Hindorff finished in third place. 
 
As the winner of America's Next Top Model, Jourdan walked away with a $100,000 national ad campaign with Guess, a fashion feature in Nylon Magazine and a modeling contract with Next Model Management.

In an exclusive interview with Reality TV World on Tuesday, Marvin talked about his Top Model: Guys & Girls experience. Below is the concluding portion of Marvin's interview. Click here to read the first half. 

To begin reading our exclusive interviews with Jourdan and Cory, click here and here

Reality TV World: What's the status of your relationship with Renee Bhagwandeen like now? Are you two still dating, and if so, where do you see things going?

Marvin Cortes: Oh God, everybody asks about that. (Laughs) We are dating. Actually, I was just on the phone with her. She's coming for my birthday in two days. We are dating still and it's long-distance right now, but hopefully when she moves to LA for sure in January, we'll see how that goes.

But I thought it was just going to be a TV thing, but it clearly isn't. We talk every day and I like her a lot, which is weird because I didn't -- I haven't liked a girl in over like -- well, for a long time, so. I haven't actually stayed with someone for a long time.

Reality TV World: You obviously joked throughout the season how you had basically kissed every single girl in the house. But because of that, some viewers have said you ended up with Renee because all the other girls you were interested in before her were eliminated from the competition. What's your response to that?

Marvin Cortes: Well when I flirted with all the girls, it was more of a playful thing. It was not really a serious relationship-kind of thing, and I think it worked out in terms of me and Renee because I never flirted with her. It was always serious, so when I did start to flirt with her and we did start to talk, like on-camera and off-camera, it was more serious and it was less of a joke than it was like, "Oh, it's 'Starvin Marvin.'"

But with the other girls, I was just being playful and just joking and being overly, like, out there. Because I honestly -- beyond the flirting, I wouldn't go very far with many of the girls on the show. I just wanted to be playful and just have fun. I don't know, I like to be comical, so. But with Renee, it wasn't like that. I never joked with her, so it just became more serious than it was a joke.

Reality TV World: Where did that nickname "Starvin' Marvin" come from that all the contestants were calling you? Who thought of it first and how did it catch on?

Marvin Cortes: It was just clever, I guess, because of my name and how it rhymes. But Nick, one of the semifinalists, he came up with it in the Jacuzzi outside while I was trying to talk to Hayley. And he just came up with the name and it was just so funny, so everyone just started using it.

Everyone, like from production to the people that were taking care of us, like, it just caught on. I should've just made a shirt of it and just wore it on the show, so they'd remember who I am. I'm surprised they didn't use it in confessionals. It was funny. I'm glad everyone was just able to have fun at my expense.

Reality TV World: When you became the finalist to compete against Jourdan in the final runway show, you said you feared letting your family down. Did you really feel like that since you finished at the runner-up or how did your family react to your success on the show?

Marvin Cortes: For awhile, I was a little -- not depressed, but I was sad, because I knew my mom was going to -- it was going to hurt my parents. I wasn't more upset that I lost. I was more upset how they were going to take it, and I had to hold it in for like nine months, because that's when the show aired and finished.

And I knew I wasn't going to win, so everyone just kept looking at me like the winner. Because at that point, it was just me and Jourdan and they thought because it was a guys' cycle, I was going to win, and then it was just such a big letdown when I didn't. My mom, when she called me, she was just so sad and I felt so bad for her -- not for myself, but because she wanted it for me.

But at that point, I was already over it. But it was just like, people were just watching it so they're reacting to what they're seeing. So I'm completely okay with it, but they're just reacting to it. So now I have to deal with people who are close to me reacting to the loss, and they're very close to it, almost like "they" lost it themselves.

Because you know, they get to see this whole journey, so you kind of feel like you're there with me. So I think a lot of fans also experience the loss with me because they were that connected to me, so they kind of understood how I would have felt.

I think that's why I connect so well with the fans, because they're like, "Ah, you should've won. I feel sad." And a lot of people were genuinely sad, like, some fans even tweeted me crying, they made videos. It was just so moving.

Reality TV World: When the results were revealed about who would be the two finalists, were you pretty certain it was going to be yourself and Jourdan, or did you actually think it would be the two guys duking it out in the end?

Marvin Cortes: I thought, by the time Jourdan was called first, I knew I was going to be called second only because I had heard the criticism and you could kind of tell what the judges will give you, the criticism. So I had more positive criticism from the judges overall than Cory did, so I kind of had an idea that I was going to move up.

And then, yeah, I felt like I was kind of a better fit for Guess and Nylon and [Next Model Management] than Cory. So I feel like that also played a role. I was like, "Okay, I don't think Cory..." And he even said it, "Guess is not for me." I think that that played a big role too, because I mean, overall, you do need to represent the clothing brand and not be the other way around. 

Reality TV World: What made you originally want to apply to be cast on America's Next Top Model?

Marvin Cortes: Well originally, I wanted to be on the show just to kind of meet girls. No, I'm just kidding. (Laughs) I wanted to go because I wanted to see if I had what it takes. Like you know when you're on American Idol, you want to sing as much as you can. And then at that point, I was like, "People keep telling me I can model, so I want to see if I actually can."

And then when I made it, I was like, "Wow, okay." And then on top of that, I didn't want to keep working retail. I worked for these brands, and I'd rather model for them than be a sales associate.

Reality TV World: What's next for you now that Top Model has finished airing? Any plans or current goals?

Marvin Cortes: Right now, I'm in LA and I'm about to sign with a major agency. And then I'm also planning [to sign with] a commercial agency and a theatrical agency, so I'll probably move my modeling into TV very, very soon. And I'm in classes and everything, so that's why I'm in LA. And also, me and Renee are getting married, so stay tuned for that!

Reality TV World: Okay, just making sure, that's a joke right?! (Laughs)

Marvin Cortes: Oh, I'm just joking.

Above is the concluding portion of Marvin's exclusive interview with Reality TV World. Click here to read the first half. To begin reading our exclusive interviews with Jourdan and Cory, click here and here

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