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Next Up From Tyra Banks: ModelLand, the Theme Park

It's opening in Santa Monica this year
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 6, 2019 2:49 PM CST
Tyra Banks arrives at the world premiere of "Life-Size 2" at the Hollywood Roosevelt hotel on Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018, in Los Angeles.   (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

(Newser) – Some theme parks have boardwalks; one coming to California will have catwalks. The attraction, set to debut at the Santa Monica Place open-air shopping mall later this year, will be called ModelLand, and it's the brainchild of Tyra Banks, herself a former supermodel and America's Next Top Model creator. Banks tells Women's Wear Daily the idea is to let anyone (who pays for a ticket) live out their dream of being a model. "It’s my calling to bring modeling to the masses," Banks says, explaining that she created her aforementioned modeling reality competition "to expand the definition of beauty based on my own pain of being told 'no' that I couldn’t do something because I’m curvy or I’m black." ModelLand, she says, takes that idea even further. She announced the theme park Tuesday on Twitter, saying it will be "a place where everyone can be a model."

The 21,000-square-foot attraction is permanent, not a pop-up, and it will be a "fantasy version of the modeling world," per a press release, that will include what the Los Angeles Times refers to as "interactive entertainment, curated retail, and user-generated [shareable] content." There may even be clothes from Hollywood designers that visitors can wear. Modelland is also the name of a 2010 young adult novel by Banks based on her life, and she says she's been working on ModelLand the attraction since before that was published. Specific details were scarce, but she says "there is a storyline I have been working on for a year" and she tells Variety she wants to capture the same "spirit of adventure and storytelling" that places like Disneyland and Universal Studios do. Eventually, she plans to open more parks in other cities. The Cut responded to the news with many, many exclamation points. (Banks was once sued for an odd reason.)

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