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Common misspelling: Tira Banks


Given Name

Date of Birth

Birth Place

Tyra Lynne Banks December 4, 1973 Los Angeles, California

Table of Contents

Biography News Websites Discography Filmography Books Posters Other Items


The following biography is from Wikipedia.org “The Free Encyclopedia.”


Tyra Lynne Banks (born December 4, 1973) is a popular American supermodel, television personality, author, actress, executive producer, and talk show host, who's best known for her role since 2003 as both the host and judge of America's Next Top Model. Banks is widely-recognized as one of the most famous fashion models in the world and she is part of a group of supermodels of African descent. Banks is best known as one of the original Victoria's Secret Angels.



Born: December 4, 1973

Los Angeles, California

Occupation: Talk show host, television personality, actress, supermodel, authour, executive producer

Salary: 18 million [1]

Net worth:  140 million USD (2006)

Website: TyraBanks.com




Early life

Banks was born in Los Angeles, California to Don Banks and Carolyn London. She was raised in Inglewood, California with her brother Devin, and attended Immaculate Heart High School, an all-girls, independent Catholic private school in Los Angeles. Growing up, she was very thin and often teased; she was considered to be an "ugly duckling." Banks later said that this was a very difficult time for her and she developed a "very strong self-image problem." Banks has publicly stated that she has an extreme fear of dolphins. [2]


In 1991, Banks was about to begin her freshman year at Claremont McKenna College when Elite Model Management gave the 17-year-old her first modeling job. Prior to this entry into the fashion world, Banks had been rejected several times for modeling assignments. In fact, she states that she did not deem her first job to be the start of a long career in fashion: "An agent saw pictures of me and said that I was the only girl she wanted to take back to Paris... I didn't leave thinking I was going to be some big fashion model. I just wanted to make money for college." [3]





Banks' career took off when she made the move from high-fashion to a commercial market. She was the first African-American to be featured on the covers of GQ, Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue, but is most famous for her work as a Victoria's Secret model. In 1997 she won the prestigious Michael Award for Supermodel of the Year. Banks has done runway shows in Paris, Milan, and the U.S. She has been featured in a variety of magazines, commercials, and billboards. Her modeling credits include runway and/or print work for CoverGirl, Swatch, Pepsi, Nike, XOXO, LensCrafters, Tommy Hilfiger, Victoria's Secret, Ralph Lauren, Dolce & Gabbana, Yves Saint-Laurent, Chanel, Escada, Anna Sui, Liz Claiborne and Richard Tyler. Banks has graced international fashion magazines, including the covers of Vogue, ELLE, Amica, ELLEgirl, L'Officiel, Harper's Bazaar, Photo, Cosmopolitan and Sports Illustrated.


In a time when waif fashion models were in prominence, Banks stood out with a more voluptuous physique at 5ft 11in tall and reported measurements of 34½-23½-35½. Banks had to work hard to persuade fashion designers that her physique was well-suited to the catwalk and ultimately walked for the best haute couture designers all over the world. Later on in her career, Banks decided that the world of high-fashion was no longer something she wished to pursue and so began seeking work in the commercial side of fashion. She says: "I was proactive [...] I told my agency to call Victoria's Secret, and I told them to call Sports Illustrated [...] I said my body is changing, and seamstresses are calling me 'grosso' in Italian, and I know what the hell that means. And I'm not about to starve."


Banks addressed her physique in an interview with The Sun, saying, "I am totally against plastic surgery. A lot of people think I have breast implants because I have the biggest boobs in the business. But I was a 34C when I was 17… They stay up when I wear a push-up bra. But if people could see me when I come home and take off my bra, how could they think these are fake?". She is known for being openly proud of her body, once commenting, "Some models are quite flat-chested so they can run around without bouncing. I can't […] Black women don't have the same body image problems as white women. They are proud of their bodies. Black men love big butts, and they cannot lie."


Despite her phenomenal success as a supermodel, Banks began venturing from modeling to becoming a media personality after 2000. She is the host, head judge, and an executive producer of the UPN television show America's Next Top Model. She also receives executive producer credits for all ANTM spinoffs. Banks also enjoyed a brief stint as a recording artist and during season two of America's Next Top Model the contestants danced in her first music video for the single Shake Ya Body ( Music Video) produced by experienced record producer Darkchild. Banks also acts as the patron for TZONE, a leadership program created by Banks for young girls that according to the organization, "reinforces core values of trust and support, challenges teen girls to resist negative social pressures, and enhances self-empowerment—inspiring girls to become confident leaders in their communities." She has also established the Tyra Banks Scholarship, a fund aimed at providing African-American girls the opportunity to attend her alma mater, Immaculate Heart High School. Currently ranked #4 out of 25 as the Sexiest Supermodels in the world, by models.com.


Banks retired from modeling in 2005. She made her final walk down the runway at the 2005 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show.



Banks' television career began on the fourth season of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, in which she played Jackie, Will's ex-girlfriend. She also appeared on Felicity. As well as her role as executive producer, host and head judge of the hit TV show America's Next Top Model, she currently hosts The Tyra Banks Show, a daytime talk show which premiered in the United States on September 12, 2005 and has just been given the greenlight for a second season. The show features stories about everyday people mixed in with celebrity interviews, much like the early format of The Oprah Winfrey Show. Under the slogan "Every woman has a story," Banks promoted her show using emotional flashbacks to her own childhood and adolescence. Many of the episodes deal with issues facing women today and how she loves using the term "dookie" to describe feces. She has also starred in an old episode of MADtv. Banks' has also starred as the ficticous brought to life doll 'Eve' in the Disney film Life-Size, along side Lindsay Lohan.



Banks appeared in Michael Jackson's "Black or White" video in a scene in which Glen Chin morphs into her, and with fellow supermodel Linda Evangelista, in George Michael's "Too Funky" video. In 2004, she recorded her first and, only single, Shake Ya Body (Music Video). She had a failed pop career, which she commented about in ANTM, "I don't know what I was thinking! ...models don't sing!" She has also had a single with NBA star Kobe Bryant, "K.O.B.E.," and has a single/soundtrack from the Disney movie Life-Size, called "Be A Star". In total, she has recorded three songs.



Banks has had minor roles in many films over the years. Her debut in film came in 1995 when she co-starred in the critically acclaimed drama Higher Learning. She also co-starred with Lindsay Lohan in the Disney film Life-Size, playing a doll named Eve who comes to life. She co-starred in 1999's Love Stinks, 2000's Coyote Ugly and 2002's Halloween: Resurrection – the eighth film in the Halloween franchise.



Banks has had a number of high-profile relationships with men, including director John Singleton, investment banker Craig Davis, basketballer Chris Webber, and Seal.


Banks has expressed her preference for a relationship with a 'normal guy' in order to escape the pressures of being together with another well-known celebrity and the media scrutiny that comes with it. She says she wants a man who "knows how to appreciate natural curves when he sees them."


On May 8, 2006, Banks was named as one of the world's 100 most influential people in TIME magazine.



Supermodels in the Rainforest: Costa Rica (1995) as herself

Higher Learning (1995) as Deja

A Woman Like That (1997)

Love Stinks (1999) as Holly Garnett

The Apartment Complex (1999) as Unkown Name

Life-Size (2000) as Eve

Love & Basketball (2000) as Kyra Kessler

Coyote Ugly (2000) as Zoe

Halloween: Resurrection (2002) as Nora Winston

Eight Crazy Nights (2002) (voice) as Victoria's Secret Gown


TV Series/Movies

Inferno (1992)

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1993) "You've Got to Be a Football Hero", "Take My Cousin... Please", "Fresh Prince After Dark", "Blood Is Thicker Than Mud", "Father of the Year", "All Guts, No Glory", "Where There's a Will, There's a Way" as Jackie Ames

New York Undercover (1997) "Descell", "Hubris", "Outrage" as Natasha Claybourne

The Hughleys (1999) "Sap and the Star" as Nicole

The Apartment Complex (1999)

Mad TV (2000) "Episode #5.25" as Katisha, "Episode #5.17"

Felicity (2000) "A Good Egg", "Kissing Mr. Covington", "One Ball, Two Strikes" as Jane Scott

Soul Food (2001) "Ordinary Pain" as Nina Joseph

America's Next Top Model (2003-present) as Executive Producer, Host

Marple: The Body in the Library (2004) as Executive Producer

American Dreams (2004)

Larceny (2004)

All of Us (2004) "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" as Roni

The Tyra Banks Show (2005-present) as Executive Producer, Host''

The Price Is Right (February 2006) as a guest Barker's Beauty




The above biography has been copied in part or in whole from an article on Wikipedia.org "The Free Encyclopedia."  It has been modified under the GNU Free Document License Section 5 in the following manner: (1) All links within the article have been removed, including text links such as "[#]"; (2) The "[Edit]" text and link have been removed [if you would like to update the article, you may do so from the original page]; (3) the table of Contents links and text have been removed; and (4) all of the sections of the original article have not been copied. All of the above text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Document License.

URL of Original Article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tyra_Banks

Date Article Copied: September 2006

We will try to replace this article with an original biography in the near future, but we hope this will be of help to our visitors in the mean time.

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