All she needs is her signature smize! Tyra Banks got her start as a model, but she is perhaps more well-known as a TV host in this day and age.
The businesswoman took the world by storm when she kicked off America’s Next Top Model in May 2003. She not only served as a host and mentor to up-and-coming catwalk stars, but she also created and executive produced the hit reality show.
Although Banks shepherded the careers of more than one major model during her time on the series, she does not necessarily want son York — whom she welcomed via surrogate with ex Erik Asla in January 2016 — to follow in her footsteps.
“Only if he wants to,” she told Us Weekly and other reporters in November 2019. “I’m not really into that. If you notice, I don’t put him on social media. I feel like he hasn’t asked for that, so I try to protect him as much as I can.”
Banks added that she didn’t have to teach York how to smize because “it’s in his genes.”
“I think the challenge is stepping into shoes. I mean, you know, Tom Bergeron and Erin. They lead the show, this is one of the top-rated shows in the world,” she exclusively told Us in September 2020. “So [I’m] respecting the stage that they have set and then adding my icing to that. I feel confident about that, but of course, it’s a challenge, but I don’t back away from challenges.”
Banks was not afraid of messing up in the gig either. “I love when something wrong happens because the world can see, like, the imperfection,” she explained. “I always say, ‘Show the mishaps and the malfunctions and the mistakes.’ … It’s my job to show everybody that I can do this so that I can entertain you.”
After receiving some criticism for how she handled her role on Dancing With the Stars, the Coyote Ugly star fired back in September 2020. “If I didn’t want to mess up, if I wanted to be perfect, I know how to do that,” she told Us at the time. “There’s a very clear way as a host that you just read the words and you’re perfect and you know exactly how to do that. But when you’re relaxed and you keep it real, the mess-ups happen. And the producer in me knows that even though somebody might be like, ‘Oh, my gosh, you’re messing up!’ it’s live, and it’s real. It’s better than being like a doll.”
Scroll down to revisit the model’s hosting jobs through the years, from America’s Next Top Model to Dancing With the Stars and more.