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Tyra Banks is back on daytime with the new syndicated lifestyle talk show FABLife, and she’s the first to admit she didn’t expect to return.
“When the Tyra show ended, I said, ‘I’m done with talk,’ ‘ she said at the Television Critics Association summer press tour on Tuesday.
The model, actress and America’s Next Top Model host led the Emmy-winning The Tyra Banks Show for five seasons. Banks cited her hectic schedule juggling both ANTM and her daytime show for her decision to step away from the industry and attend business classes at Harvard.
“It just wasn’t a healthy thing for me,” Banks said. “At that time in my career, I was probably the most successful … and the most unhappy.”
(It also didn’t help that her first daytime show was “conflict-oriented,” as Banks noted. “I took that home a lot.”)
Banks said she would receive calls from ABC occasionally, but it wasn’t until Lisa Hackner joined ABC as evp daytime and syndicated programming that Banks took a meeting. The two had a relationship from when Hackner worked for Telepictures Productions, which produced The Tyra Banks Show. “In that meeting, it was everything I have ever dreamed of,” Banks said. “She pulled me back in.”
However, Banks knew that she didn’t want to do The Tyra Banks Show 2.0. In addition to Banks, who also serves as an executive producer, FABLife features a diverse panel of lifestyle experts including model Chrissy Teigen, fashion editor Joe Zee, interior designer Lauren Makk and YouTube star Leah Ashley.
“[Lisa] knew that I did not want to do it by myself,” Banks said. “I can’t.” Each expert will focus on their respective area of expertise, such as Teigen’s cooking skills and Zee’s fashion tips. “I’m always about things that are first or unique or best and I was like, ‘Yeah there’s no daytime show that has these different pillars to it,'” she said.
As a lifelong fan of daytime, Banks said she the genre could use some shaking up. “What I noticed over time is that I feel, from a producing standpoint, shows have the same kind of content, same-looking set with a little different colors, the same theme song,” she said.
“[There’s] just not enough innovation and when I look at primetime and How to Get Away With Murder and Scandal ... they’re taking chances, they’re taking risks”
Added Banks: “And I feel like daytime is a little tentative.”
How else with FABLife stand out? Banks pointed to the show’s set, which features pop art, and the theme song, which a single, not a jingle.
“If its been done before, we’re like, ‘Make it different,'” she said. “It doesn’t have to be the same old, same old.”
FABLife premieres on Sept. 14 at 9 a.m. on ABC.
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