"I Was Beyond Shocked When I Was Eliminated" Ė An Interview with America's Next Top Model 8's Feliciaby Phil Kural -- 03/23/2007
I have to admit that Felicia being sent packing so early in the competition really did shock me. After all, I had her pegged for the final three! I did have a chance to chat with Felicia about her time on the show, and she was able to shed some light on a few things Ė like Reneeís attitude, the judges calling her cocky and what she would have done with a $40,000 bracelet!
RealityNewsOnline: Hey Felicia! I have to admit that Iím a little shocked to be talking with you so soon!
Felicia: I know! I still donít know what happened Ė maybe it was just a bad case of the flu that did me in!
RNO: Had you watched previous seasons of the show and what factored into your decision to apply?
Felicia: I watched a little, yes. My friends and family were the ones that told me I needed to apply though. I was actually supposed to try out for season seven, but never got around to it, so when season eight was casting, I promised everyone I would go for it. I walked into casting and it was totally random, and I got called back!
RNO: The judges said that you were beginning to come across as cocky. Do you think they were confusing confidence with cockiness?
Felicia: I have no clue what the judges were thinking with their comment that I was beginning to get cocky. Maybe it was them confusing confidence and cockiness, Iím not sure. It doesnít make sense though, since I never went into panel trying to be too confident though, or being cocky Ė at least that I knew of!
RNO: Had you ever felt that you might have been gloating a bit too much in front of the other girls or getting ahead of yourself with your comments about your photo shoot going well?
Felicia: No. Because I remember saying to the other girls that if I got a good review at panel, I was going to rejoice. I thought my photo shoot was much better than they made it out to be and to be honest, I think they chose the worst photo Iíve ever taken in my life. I just hope the whole thing isnít predetermined. I thought about that, but I really hope thatís not the case.
RNO: What about your makeover, what did you think of it? Personally, I liked your older look better and thought it made you stand out more!
Felicia: Really? You liked that brown hair? Youíre the only one! I like the darker hair, and I think it helped play down the whole comparison to Tyra thing. Iím sticking with it right now.
RNO: Speaking of which, we saw a lot of comparisons between you and Tyra. Was this originally brought up by you, the judges or the other contestants and do you ever feel it was used against you?
Felicia: During the semi-finals, one of the girls made the comparison. However, once other girls heard it, they agreed and all started calling me ďBaby Tyra.Ē So I thought it would be funny to tell Tyra about it when I first met with the judges, and Iím not sure if she took it seriously or as a joke. I mean, I doubt she was jealous and used it against me. Sheís Tyra Banks Ė thereís no reason for her to hold a grudge over that.
RNO: You had commented that with Renee, you never know which personality you are going to get. Did anyone ever talk to her about the whole bi-polar personality?
Felicia: I donít think anyone ever brought it up to her. At least, I havenít heard of anyone bringing it up to her and I didnít either. I think that girl has five people living in her head. It was just weird the way she would click, and be nice and sweet one minute, then be bitchy and sarcastic the next. It was so strange!
RNO: What was the time span between Jaelís friend dying and the most recent photo shoot? Do you feel like she was given a proper time period to mourn before being thrown into something so deep?
Felicia: They didnít give Jael any time to do anything Ė they didnít give ANY of us time to do anything! I think Jael handled the whole thing very well, and better than I thought she would, especially having to depict someone in her photo shoot that died of a drug overdose. Jael is very strong.
RNO: Previews for next week show Renee telling Whitney that a plus-sized girl could never win the competition. Do you think itís possible for a plus sized girl to ever win?
Felicia: I do think a plus sized girl can win. I mean, why not? Whitney has the potential and won the challenge this week! I donít understand how Renee can tell Whitney that she doesnít have a chance to win while she was the only girl that didnít get her key at the last challenge. Not only that, but sheís trying to lecture the winner of the challenge? Sheís out of her mind.
RNO: Okay, so admit it Ė you would have sold that $40,000 bracelet if you won it!
Felicia: Ha! I donít know! Whitney let me put the bracelet on and it was so cold, and icy. All I could think was ďOh my God!Ē It was crazy. If I had won it, I probably would have just stared at it for a very long time.
RNO: When you were standing with Dionne in front of the judges, did you have a feeling you were going to be eliminated or based on critiques, did you think you would be staying?
Felicia: Half of me thought I was going home because I had the worst photo for the week, but the other half figured I had a good chance of staying since my other three photos were good. I was beyond shocked when I was eliminated though, and when they called Dionneís name, the only thing I could hear in my head was ďAre you kidding me?! You canít be serious!Ē I mean, I would have been just as sad if Dionne left because we were so close, but it was me, so of course I was more sad!
RNO: Is there anyone specific you are pulling for now that you have been eliminated? Who do you think has been showing the most potential?
Felicia: Oh, that would be Dionne Ė thatís my buddy! We were the closest and she was like my sister. Jael and I got close too though, and if Dionne doesnít win, Iíd love to see Jael take it.
RNO: You have a choice: Youíre either stuck in a room with Renee crying on the phone for an hour or Brittany complaining and crying about her weave for two hours. Which do you choose?
Felicia: Brittany Ė no doubt! At least I can help Brittany with her hair, which I did while we were there. With Renee, I would be stuck and the reason Iíd be stuck with her is probably because we were arguing. Someone would get hit in the end.
RNO: Wait, was there more animosity with you and Renee that we didnít get to see?
Felicia: There was some. I remember this one time, while we were in the limo, I was asleep and had a headache. We were waiting on the crew and when they finally arrived, we were getting out of the limo and Renee pushed me in the back or tugged on my jacket or something. I turned around and said to her ďGirl, if you donít shut up and stop talking to meÖĒ We just didnít get along.
RNO: What are your immediate plans after the show finishes airing? Do you plan on continuing to pursue a modeling path?
Felicia: Oh yeah, I want to move to LA and pursue modeling. Houston is home, and I love it there, but LA is hot. I really love it here and Iíd love to try and get into modeling out here, thatís a definite.
RNO: What are your other goals for the future and what do you want to do if modeling doesnít end up working out in the long run?
Felicia: Well, I do dance and have hip-hop training. I love all kinds of dance, but hip-hop is one of those things I do when I get mad to blow off steam or just work out, so I could always get involved in that. However, I donít see modeling not working out. Modeling could always lead to other things like acting, clothing or even a shoe line. Iím just taking this as they go!
RNO: Is there anything you would like to add or say to fans of the show?
Felicia: I want to thank three people in particular. My boyfriend, his sister and his mom, Barbara. The three of them are the most important people to me and really pushed for me and rooted me on. I owe a lot to them! Thank you everyone though that was rooting for me!
RNO: Thanks, Felicia! I think youíre going to do great Ė I had you picked for my final three!
Felicia: Ha! Iíve been getting that all day! Thanks, Phil.Phil Kural is an office manager at a law firm, and graduated from Temple University with a degree in journalism. You can send feedback to him at email@example.com.