Vice Studios, OUTtv Plan Transgender Makeover Series
'Clothes Minded' will tackle gender identity by helping trans and gender nonconforming people find a unique look to celebrate their true selves.
Canadian LGBTQ+ TV channel OUTtv and Vice Studios are at work on an empowering reality makeover series to help trans and gender nonconforming people find a unique look to comfortably express and celebrate their identity.
Clothes Minded, set to hold casting calls across North America ahead of a planned 2020 debut, will during each episode follow a young person facing a key event in their lives — a job interview, a wedding, a prom — who will receive help to authentically and emotionally represent who they are.
OUTtv COO Philip Webb told The Hollywood Reporter the reality series will be intimate and personal as it assists people across the full gender spectrum in receiving a makeover. The participants in Clothes Minded will include many people who are not transitioning from male to female, or female to male, and having surgery as a result.
"It's a one-on-one experience of someone who has requested the assistance with defining their own look. You literally become part of their journey," Webb explained.
Clothes Minded will also continue the path towards visibility and acceptance for trans and gender nonconforming people and characters in TV begun with Jill Soloway's trans-centric storytelling with Amazon's Transparent, Laverne Cox receiving an Emmy nomination for her work on Orange Is the New Black and Ryan Murphy's FX drama Pose.
Vice Media has already produced LGBTQ-friendly shows like Gaycation With Ellen Page and The Trixie & Katya Show; Vice News has covered issues surrounding the transgender community; and Viceland produced the Twiz & Tuck series in 2017. Clothes Minded marks Vice's first makeover series that celebrates the trans and gender nonconforming communities.
Vice Studio Canada senior vp Vanessa Case said the reality series will target young people who are open and proud of their LGBTQ+ identity, but need help with an upcoming life event and who have family and friends who may support their personal journey, but don't fully understand it.
"This makeover series will see someone at the end become comfortable in their own skin, as they truly feel the part they want to feel, and we will have family and friends better understand the process of what it's like to be in the LGBTQ+ space," Case explained.
The series producers have yet to reveal the co-hosts for Clothes Minded, but add they will come from the LGBTQ+ community to help bring the show's makeover participants through their journey. OUTV and Vice Studios will also fill the series' North American crew with trans and LGBTQ+ community members as added support for the participants and their families.
Vice Studios will distribute the series outside of OUTtv’s existing territories, which includes Canada, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and India. Case said discussions are ongoing about licensing Clothes Minded to an American partner.
And while the series will put a focus on a participant's fashion, makeup and hair makeover, Clothes Minded will also deal with the emotional struggles of those from the trans and gender nonconforming communities, which includes universal feelings of fear and shame — but in an entertaining and compassionate way.
"The series is a story-driven, motivational and a beautiful factual series that's meant to entertain and inform, but not more be than that," Case explained.