Dani Evans Addresses Tyra Banks Backlash Over Resurfaced 'America's Next Top Model' Clip [Video]

Tyra Banks has been catching hell all week over problematic clips from America’s Next Top Model that have resurfaced on social media.

One clip, in particular, focuses on Tyra’s urging of season six contestant Dani Evans to close the gap in her teeth because her look was “not marketable.”

“So Danielle, you went to the dentist but you refused to have your gap closed,” Tyra told Dani in the episode. “Do you really think you can have a CoverGirl contract with a gap in your mouth?”

“Yes, why not?” Dani responded.

“This is all people see …” Tyra said while sticking her finger on her front teeth. “It’s not marketable.”

This was 2006. In 2020, there are plenty examples of models with gaps dominating the modeling industry…like Slick Woods.

Slick, who’s known for her gap, took to social media to criticize Tyra’s comments

“No one should ever talk to you like that @danievans1, that episode fucked up little Simone/Slick so that’s how y’all feel @tyrabanks @miss_jalexander?” Slick wrote on Instagram.

Dani decided to speak out on the backlash and her experience.
“I knew in that moment, after reading [Woods’] words, that I have a responsibility to address what really happened and to speak my truth,” she said. “But let me tell you what this video is not. This is not a video to war against anyone, this is not a video to defame anyone’s character, and this is not a video to discuss my relationship with Tyra. This is a video for me to speak my truth and to provide clarity and for me to address an issue that was done 15 years ago that carries weight and that clearly affected a lot of young girls in America …”

Dani then Spoke on some unaired events that led up to Tyra’s comments.

“So, I go forward and Tyra’s like, ‘Why didn’t you get your gap closed?’ I’m like, ‘Huh?’ She like, ‘I told you to get your gap closed.’ I’m like, ‘No you didn’t'” Dani recalled. ” … In that moment, I knew what was happening. I knew that I was basically set up.”

She said all the contestants were sent to the dentist in small groups. When she arrived, she told the doctor she just wanted a cleaning and a whitening, but he repeatedly asked her if she wanted to close her gap. Dani said she declined because she was very secure with how her teeth looked; though she said the gap was something that used to make her cry when she was a child, as her family couldn’t afford braces to close it.

In the moment, Dani said she chose to get her gap partially closed because it was her ticket out of Arkansas.

“What you think I’mma choose, fam?” she continued. “So Tyra says to me, ‘If I send you back to the dentist, will get your gap closed?’ And I meet her with another question: ‘So, what you’re saying is, if I tell you no, you’re gonna send me home tonight?'”

“I was not going to allow something that is physical on my face to stop me from getting out to make a better life for myself …” she said. “Nothing or no one was going to stand in my way. And it wasn’t about copping out, it was about understanding what really carries weight and holds value in my life—and teeth wasn’t one of them.”

Watch Dani’s full video below.

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