Tan France On How Next In Fashion Tells Queer Stories & Opens Hearts

Tan France host of Next in Fashion

Tan France host of Next in Fashion

Netflix’s fashion competition series Next in Fashion is back this week, and returning with it is the always delightful and chic Tan France. Joining him this time is a new co-host: supermodel extraordinaire Gigi Hadid.

For fans of the show, its renewal came as a delightful surprise because the series, which originally aired in 2020, was canceled despite being excellent. But baby, we live in the era of the reboot and now the fashion competition series is back, bigger and better than ever!

For those unfamiliar with the premise, France and Hadid play host to a group of fashion designers whose talents and aesthetics are at the forefront of what’s “next in fashion.” Each week, these designers compete in challenges to show off their skills, hoping to walk away with a prize of $200,000 and the chance to share their designs with the world.

France and Hadid are joined on the judging panel by plenty of iconic and familiar faces including Hailey Bieber, Emma Chamberlain, Bella Hadid, and true fashion royalty, Donatella Versace.

While all these elements add to the excitement and drama of the series, the real heart of the show are the designers, many of whom have overcome great barriers to be there — and, of course, many of them are queer and trans, and here to share their stories. It’s an aspect of the show that’s especially powerful to France who opened up to PRIDE about how his career has become a platform for humanizing people from all walks of life, including the LGBTQ+ community.

France shares how meaningful the series is to him personally, talks about his beautiful friendship with Hadid, and offers some fashion advice for people trying to take their fashion to the… wait for it… next level

PRIDE: I loved season one of Next In Fashion and was so excited when I heard it was returning. How did you feel when you got the news?

TAN FRANCE: I was overjoyed. I love this show. But more importantly, for me, personally, I love this job so much. It’s my favorite job I’ve literally ever done in my entire life. And so the fact that I got to do it again, and this time with Gigi, who I love so much… dream. It really is.

One thing this season does so well is tell queer and trans stories. How did it feel for you to get to tell those stories and elevate those voices?

You know, I’ve only ever known that in entertainment. When I got the job on Queer Eye, I didn’t want to do anything that didn’t represent everyone I wanted to represent. Diverse stories, and obviously, we’re a cast of five queer people. But we continue to tell stories of other queer people who don’t have the same story as us.

Then going into Next in Fashion — even in season one we had incredible queer stories. But for me it’s not just about sharing queer stories, it’s any story that isn’t really highlighted on our screens typically. I am multifaceted. I am intersectional. I’m queer, I’m brown, I’m Muslim, I’m an immigrant, I’m so many things. I want to share those stories. And so I’m in a very privileged position, and in my opinion, a very powerful position to be able to say, ‘No, we’re not just doing a white show with cis white straight people, this is not happening. And if you’re gonna do it, I ain’t doing it.’

So yeah, it gives me great hope for where TV is going, where we see a show like this [where] these are incredibly talented people. And they just so happened to have this backstory.

Watch PRIDE’s full interview with Tan France below.

PRIDE Interviews Tan France About Next In Fashion & Why Queer Rep …

It’s such a scary time when queer people and drag queens are under attack, does presenting these designers in a way that shows their talent and humanity give you more hope for the future?

From my own experience, when I’m on the street, I get a lot of people, typically men, straight men, who will say, ‘Oh, my gosh, I never thought I could be into a gay show. I never thought that I would understand the queer perspective and I managed to do that.’

People very offensively will say, ‘I didn’t know Muslims could be like, you’re just a regular person.’ I’m like, ‘yes, I know.’ And so I understand the importance of representation, really showing our humanity, first and foremost.

So, getting to do a show like this, where we are highlighting even more stories, I hope that the main reason for this is that we get to show our humanity and for people to sit at home thinking, ‘I have no idea I could like that kind of person. I was so close-minded. I just got my mind opened by this dawn TV show.’

You and Gigi have such amazing chemistry. Can you talk a little bit about your friendship?

I will say she’s a great actress and I’m a great actress. It’s all fake. We just know how to turn it on for the cam — no. I love this girl so much. You can’t teach that kind of chemistry. You can’t produce that kind of chemistry.

You know what I loved about what they did this season? They show a lot of the moments where … before [production] would say ‘okay, go’ and so you get to see us being just idiots together and you kind of get a glimpse into what we’re like when we’re just at her house chillin’. I love that part of the show. I think it makes it a lot more informal and it just feels like you get to watch a hangout.

If you could give one fashion tip to take everybody in the world’s fashion to the next level, what would it be?

Stop caring about what Adam or Jane down the street are wearing and just put something on that makes you feel good. I don’t care if other people think it’s insane. You feel good in it, wear it.

Next In Fashion returns Friday on Netflix. Watch the trailer below.

Gigi Hadid and Tan Frace look for the next big fashion designer and they bring their expert friends along in the search. Next in …

Next in Fashion: Season 2 | Official Trailer | Netflix

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