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Tyra Banks wants to be the next Walt Disney with her new venture Modelland

Tyra Banks wants to be the next Walt Disney with her new venture Modelland
[Photo: John Shearer/Getty Images For dcp]

Having impacted the modeling world by bucking body and beauty standards in her own career and launching the careers of modeling hopefuls through her long-running show America’s Next Top Model, Tyra Banks is embarking on a new endeavor: Modelland, a sprawling attraction à la Disneyland with the aim of celebrating and empowering all types of beauty.

“Modelland is not just a place to us; It’s a movement,” said Banks in an interview with Variety. “Yes, it’s an attraction and a destination, but above all, it’s the genesis for people with all types of different beauty to feel seen and validated.”

But don’t think of this as just an Instagram-focused pop-up experience like the Museum of Ice Cream. Modelland’s flagship location will debut later this year in a 21,000-square-foot, multi-level space in Santa Monica, California. There are already plans in place to expand in the U.S. and globally with programming possibilities that could spin into features, TV, or other forms of content.

With Modelland, Banks is, of course, pushing her mission of inclusivity in the modeling business, but she’s also trying to establish a lasting legacy.

“I’ve always looked up to Walt Disney’s empire. He’s created this world for us that we love as a child, cherish as an adult, and enjoy as a family,” Banks said. “It’s his legacy that is never-ending. I have always wanted to create something that exists beyond me, so that when my time on Earth is done, people–young, old, women, men, families, friends–will still have many outlets and physical destinations to visit to be the dream versions of themselves, to have their beauty celebrated and to just let loose and have fun.”

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