Monday, October 20, 2008

MTV rethinks Model Makers

Awhile back, MTV had put out a casting call for their new show "Model Makers," a show transforming young girls into models at any single cost. There was much upheavel about this new show, and apparently it was enough to make MTV stop from airing the show. Here's the news from Darryl Roberts, the filmmaker of "America the Beautiful:"

As some of you may be aware, MTV was involved with a
new "reality" program entitled "Model Makers." The show aimed to take
15 young women between the ages of 17 and 24 and turn them into high fashion models by forcing them to lose weight. Sounds disturbing doesn't it?
It's actually worse than it sounds! The website for the site itself
pulled no punches in its description of the program which "dares to go
where no modeling show has gone before":

"Have you always wanted to model but don't know where to start? Maybe
you don't know the right people. Maybe you are not thin enough. Women
come in all shapes and sizes, but models don't."

Read it for yourself here!

A lot of words popped into my head when I found out about MTV's plans
to broadcast such filth: Disappointment, Disgust, Anger - to name but
a few. For two months I blogged about the deleterious effects of the show in blogs like this.

I even took it upon myself to write an open letter to MTV on
behalf of teenage women on my October 6th Huffington Post blog.

Huffington Post article

In my letter, which I know many of you read, I warned MTV of the
dangers of promoting such a careless and destructive message. A
message that has become almost pervasive these days and leads to
millions of unnecessary eating disorders.
How many millions of young girls everywhere would be negatively
affected by the ludicrous premise of the show: A beautiful woman = A
very thin woman. None, if I could help it.

Recently I was on CNN News talking about the show and the potential dangers. I encouraged all of you to write MTV and a lot of you did!

I have tons of letters from mothers and teenagers themselves that were sent to MTV, letting them know that this kind of programming would not be tolerated.

I had even come up with a great idea. On the first night of "Model Makeovers," airing, whenever that was, I was going to have all of you across the country interview every teenager that you could find with your video cameras and cell phones, having them tell us in their own words what they thought of the show.

I was then going to take the footage and turn it into a documentary, entering it into film festivals and theaters across the country. The name of the documentary was going to be called "MTV, look at what you done to be." Catchy title!

I called MTV today to find out when they had planned on airing the show and they said, "We no longer plan on airing "Model Makers."

WOW! My first thought was the American public is awesome. When you decide that you've had enough, you can move mountains.

Speaking of which, I have a tree outside that I can't quite dig up, why don't the thousands of you come on over, so we can talk about it.

Seriously, I'm so proud of every person and every organization out there that voiced a complaint. From the bottom of my heart, if I could afford it, I would treat all of you to a taco and a glass of tap water. I'm sure you'd rather have juice or soda, but it has too much sugar in it. Hey, just trying to do my part!

I take no personal credit for "Model Makers," not being released. The credit is all yours. Every person and every organization. I'm just one guy, trying to make a difference. It's all of you collectively that have the powerful voice.

For all I know, someone at MTV decided the show was ill-conceived. What's important here is that the show doesn't see light of day, not who's responsible.

This is a step in the right direction for millions of
teenage girls everywhere!

To teenagers across America,

I want to say that we love you!
You're beautiful, exactly the way that you are!

And thank you MTV. You did the right thing. If this show not airing creates an extra half-hour in your schedule, call me. I have plenty of show ideas.

Darryl Roberts
"America the Beautiful"

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