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Hair Battle Spectacular Interviewby Pattye Grippo    

This is an interview with Eva Marcille and Derek J on August 8, 2011 about the show Hair Battle Spectacular.

Hair Battle

Question:
Of the episodes that you filmed so far what has been your most memorable moment from the show?

Eva Marcille:
One of my most memorable moment from the show has to be the episode where we had drag queens. And what was so amazing is that every week we used female models to display the hair designs as well as the makeup and the outfits. But for this particular week was the one week where we were allowed to use gentlemen. So for me to have men on set was amazing, but they put on high heels. So it was an absolute riot the entire day and it was just amazing to shoot.

Question:
What do you think it is about the show that keeps viewers they keep coming back each season to watch it?

Eva Marcille:
I think what brings people back is the whole mystery and elusion of what goes on behind the scenes, what all it takes to create such amazing pieces, and what the models go through between hair and makeup and wardrobe. And to put that out I think was what's so amazing and why viewers want to see it because it's kind of the behind the scenes of what happens in the glamming process.

Question:
What's next for you beyond this?

Eva Marcille:
Well the sky's the limit for me. I'm currently developing projects of my own and I'm acting and still modeling. So the next thing for me is more work, more work.

Question:
Since you yourself have been a reality show contestant and winner, do you feel like you were able to offer the contestants some advice in what it's like to compete?

Eva Marcille:
I was. As you'll see as this evening goes along, I won't give anything away but competition is hard. It's not an easy thing. If you see a basketball player and he's on the court and he's shooting his free throws or his three-(pointer), it's easy by yourself. But it's hard when you have people guarding you and everyone else on the court. So that's the same thing for competition.

There are amazing stylists, but when it comes to them having to compete and amount of time allotted giving an inspiration and you have ten other people that are equally as amazing, it just makes for a crazy, crazy situation. And I know what that situation is like having to live with 14 people and having to put my best face forward every morning in a strange environment. It can be crazy.

Question:
Had you watched the show before and why did you want to become a part of it this season?

Eva Marcille:
I have watched the show and the pop culture has definitely taken on fantasy hair as one of the leading things right now and if you look at like Lady Gaga who came to award show in an egg with crazy hair and crazy fashion, that's what we play off of. And we kind of shed a light on what's going on in our pop culture outside of what's just simple and mainstream. And that was so intriguing to me because I see everything. I mean being blessed to be in this business, you see it all. But fantasy hair is something you don't see on an everyday basis, but it's something that you want to know about. So that's why I just kept tuning in.

And then to be a part of the project was absolutely amazing to work with experts such as Derek J and Taylor Jacobson who knows everything fashion. To see all of these creative minds together making such an amazing project it was a joy for me everyday.

Question:
Eva, I wanted to know after watching past hairbattle competitions what do the current contestants need to do to stand out?

Eva Marcille:
After watching the last season and participating in Season 2, what I can say is that everyone that participated had to watch the season before because they set a bar so high on the first challenge, it was absolutely amazing. And I think what's so amazing this season is they saw what happened last season and they saw that Derek J is not playing. He knows what he's talking about, so you better take the notes. And they did. They took all the notes that Derek J gave last year and incorporated them in their hair designs this year, and it was absolutely spectacular.

Question:
I was curious as to the rules of the competition in terms of how much of the designs can be non-hair related like crops and other elements like extensions and things like that?

Derek J:
When you're dealing with fantasy hair most of the hair is extensions and they have foam fillers, and wire fillers, or things of that nature. So 90% of the piece is the nails, you know. And so they just use that and they have to use their regular hair to kind of incorporate into it to make it all one cohesive piece. So it's all about wherever your mind takes to you, you're able to use it and do whatever you want to do with it.

Question:
In your experience is there one region of the country that has better hair designers than anywhere else?

Eva Marcille:
I'll answer first because Derek knows most likely the right answer. But I would say for some reason I notice that in the Midwest and in the South that hair designs tend to be very extravagant, and elaborate, and very well groomed in detail. And a lot of it I think is the way fantasy hair got its start. It got its start in your mom and pop's beauty salons and barber shops and tried to figure out how you can take a regular hairstyle and make something of that. Make it stand out beyond just an up do or beyond just a ponytail and it's been going on for ages in the Midwest and the South. And I think they have totally perfected it. Cities like Detroit, Michigan; their hair designs are absolutely I mean just amazing. What do you think, Derek?

Derek J:
Well definitely for me it's the Midwest because first I'm from the Midwest. But it's crazy because like what we do in the Midwest, they actually wear their hair like that to work so hair stylers are able to create on a daily basis on a daily client less where in Georgia ??? where I'm at now -- in Atlanta women don't wear their hair like that. They're kind of basic free flowy type of chicks and the same in LA. So in the Midwest they're able to do those things daily. They're doing skyscraper ponytails, and yellow and blue hair, and long fingernails, and things of that nature to do that. So they're able to create on a daily basis.

Question:
Eva, as a model, what was the most outrageous you had to pose in?

Eva Marcille:
Actually, I did a shoot for Vibe magazine more recently where celebrity hairstylist makeup artist Terrell Mullin did my hair. It was a laced front ponytail, lace front wig, and he made this huge ponytail and this fishtail braid that went all the way down to my knee. The hair had to weigh at least 15 pounds. And I had to wear this taped to my head and deliver the shots that they want. And that was definitely outrageous. It allowed me to have a lot more respect for hair models because that is not easy work.

Question:
You both said that fantasy hair really is extravagant and elaborate, and it really isn't a mainstream phenomenon. So do you think that the show's focus on fantasy hair will attract all types of audiences and viewers or mainly high fashion viewers? Who do you think will watch the show?

Eva Marcille:
I think the show is a show for everyone because the show is boat loads of fun. Where fantasy hair might not be in the mainstream walking down the street in Los Angeles, like Derek J had said you will see it walking in the streets of Midwest. I went to college in Atlanta, Georgia and I remember my first week in school. I saw women from the Midwest; they had zippers in their hair. They had like two French rolls kind of pushed together to make a zipper that you could actually zip up and down.

I remember people having these things in their hair that if you press a button, it would light up. So the beauty of it is you're bringing to the cities what their city doesn't already have which is this fantasy hair. And the neighboring city right next to them might have totally been on this new trend for a long time. So what you're allowing people to do is kind of travel in time and travel across the world while they sit at home for an hour and they get to see all these amazing designs inspired by people from all the US.

And even on the show we have people from Brazil. We have people from all the world where like Carnivale is something that's really big overseas. It's actually happening right now, and it's all about going big and going elaborate. So the hair pieces of very indicative of head pieces that you might see around the world.

Derek J:
I think the show is everybody. It is a fun, fun show at the end of the day. So regardless if you're not a hairstylist, if you're not into fantasy it's just seeing it being done and being created and just seeing creativity at its best dealing with hair. So it's going to relate to anyone. They are going to love the show.

Question:
Eva, when I was reading about the show the prize is $100,000. What do you think is more beneficial to a contest winner in the long run? Do you think an elite contract in their field or money would be more beneficial to them?

Eva Marcille:
For America's Next Top Model, the prize was $100,000 and a Cover Girl contract. This situation being it different, I would say $100,000 would be an enormous prize because it gives you an opportunity to basically setup shop and start doing what you want to do. As a hairstylist, you're basically freelance. You're basically independently employed. And because of that, the money helps you to start your business. It helps you to start where you want to go because you are independent. And so being able to setup shop be it building a shop or being able to partner up with someone else in creating or traveling and being able to go into the hair shows because it's not cheap to create this designs. It costs.

You have to pay for all the different hairs and the things that you use for your techniques and your fillers and then the fashion. So it definitely helps give you a leg up in the business as having like a little starting fee.

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