Janice Dickinson talks about 'The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency'
By Christopher Rocchio, 08/21/2008
The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency's fourth-season cast had an unexpected roommate when they moved into their Hollywood Hills mansion -- the self-proclaimed "world's first supermodel."
"Truthfully, it was exhilarating," Dickinson told Reality TV World during a Wednesday conference call. "I'm a pretty tough boot camp sergeant, and I demand perfection in myself and expect it from the people around me -- especially keeping the kids focused. Honestly, I don't expect anything from the kids that I don't do myself."
Dickinson said when she started her modeling career 32 years ago she lived in an agency house in Paris and thought it gave her a leg up in the industry. She hopes to provide the same for her current talent roster.
"What motivated me when I was that young living in Paris out of an agency house was that it truly gave me an added advantage to get a jump-start on what I truly wanted to achieve with my life in modeling," she told Reality TV World.
"All I did was eat, sleep and exercise modeling. It was 24/7 modeling. So [executive producer Stuart Krasnow] and I both wanted to incorporate that, and to provide for the boys and girls proper nutrition, proper health, proper finance -- all things that your average model won't receive unless you're living in a house like this. This is the first of its kind."
Krasnow -- who also participated in the conference call -- said he couldn't have envisioned any other star living in a house with a show's participants.
"I think if I had done this with any other talent, the first conversation would have been, 'Okay, how do we fake it? How do a I sneak out of the house and sneak back in the morning?' Janice lived there 24/7," Krasnow told Reality TV World. "She was in for the full run. I really can't think of anybody else who really would do that along with the cast of a reality show. I almost think it was harder for the kids to be in the house than it was for Janice to be there."
Dickinson sounded elated that she had the opportunity to live in the agency house with the fourth-season cast.
"It means everything. I eat and sleep for kids achieving their dreams," she told reporters. "This allows me to give back in a field -- in an industry -- that I worship. I just want to remain in the picture. If I can't be in front of the camera, I'm behind it, I take photographs. If I'm not taking the photographs, I'm dining with the clients. It's all facets of the industry that I absolutely love."
Since she loves the modeling industry, Dickinson said she's trying to add some spice to a business that she thinks follows trends too easily.
"It's a show that is so unique and different. We are trying to bring diversity and equality into the agency with a vision that doesn't quite fit the magazine and the editorial mold that's out there as to date," she told reporters, adding that Brazilian and Russian models have dominated the industry's landscape in recent memory.
"I want it to be American, and that's primarily what we're doing. We're trying to keep it all American."
Not only will the fourth-season cast members be living in a house with Dickinson, the former America's Next Top Model judge will also be watching them Big Brother-style.
"The models do not know they're being observed by me 24/7 so they can't get away with what they think they can get away with," she told reporters.
Krasnow added that Dickinson's constant monitoring made it difficult for the cast to be anything but themselves.
"I think with all of these reality shows, there's a certain awareness that they're on camera and they get very savvy about it -- they always try to stay a step ahead of us," explained Krasnow.
"You will see as the show progresses that not in a million years did they suspect that Janice herself was having the same access as the producers have -- being able to go into the bedroom, hit a button that's hidden inside of a mannequin and really be in the know and see everything the models were doing and really be able to watch it unedited and raw the same way we do. We weren't filtering anything for Janice. It really worked out well."
Dickinson said the 24/7 access to the cast allowed nothing to slip by her.
"You can't have hidden secrets because if it comes out on a job somewhere, you're going to come up into some serious trouble," she said. "I discovered some of the models are having eating disorders, others are having romantic trysts when it wasn't allowed inside the house. You have to tune into the show to uncover what I saw on our surveillance cameras."
While the cast was wary of Dickinson watching them at all hours, Krasnow said they also appreciated the access they had to her.
"They really, really do trust what she has to say," he told reporters. "Since these models are up for real jobs and potentially real campaigns and real exposure -- it's not an elimination show -- every piece of information they get from Janice can be the difference between getting a job and not getting a job. It's real."
Krasnow added that Dickinson even gave her housemates her cell phone number so they could contact her if they went off site for a job.
"It goes way beyond what we document on the show," he said. "Her relationship with them is very real and very genuine and she's very much in their lives on every level."
Krasnow said The JaniceDickinson Modeling Agency's fourth season will also allow viewers to meet the real, genuine Dickinson.
"I think one of the things that being in the house really allowed us to show even more of this season than previous seasons is the full character that Janice is," he explained.
"I think people mistakenly think that Janice is this over-the-top caricature. What anybody who knows Janice knows that she's so multifaceted that as much as Janice can have a side that's really tough and really extreme, she also has a side that's really emotional. She has so much heart... I think that you're really going to see this very den mother side of Janice that I don't think we're used to seeing. It's actually very moving and very real."