In celebration of Pride Month, the Filipino-founded and -led Slay Model Management taped its third annual Slay Model Search, a reality series that seeks transgender models to represent them in the modeling industry.
The coronation night which will crown Pinay Jasmine Gabrielle as the winner will air on Here TV and Amazon in August but the show will have several episodes leading to the big night.
"Slay Model Search is really the elite model look or the Ford supermodel search and this is actually our third year with Here TV," Cecilio Asuncion of Slay Model Management noted. "Every year the agency just gets bigger and better and I’m proud of that and being an ally, it’s such a community; it’s given my life meaning. It’s priceless."
For Asuncion, who's worked with trans models for nearly a decade, the progress in recent years has been groundbreaking, but he feels that his work is not yet done.
"Our models work and I’m very proud of that. They’re models first; they just happen to be trans. What we’re selling is beauty, we’re not selling a gimmick... There has been change. However I think the bi-work is just happening now, which I think is important for us to know it's not enough that you support trans people or you love them. We need them to be employed; we need them to be seen; we need them to be loved."
After the Slay Model Search crowned its latest Slay Sister in the US, the show is now heading to Asia where they’re excited to see the Filipina talents. ABS-CBN will partner with Slay for the Philippine leg of the search, where hundreds of aspiring models throughout Asia will try to break into the series.
"We’re really excited; we’re going to travel the world and expand this all over the place. It’s just an opportunity for everybody to be seen and it’s just about visibility right now," producer Philip Anthony said. "The search is going to be amazing. We’ve already had how many applicants - a couple hundred, 278. So you can imagine just what the search will be like."
Aside from the Philippine stop, which is scheduled for February of next year, Slay will also head to Mexico, as well as Europe - all with the same goal: to bring trans beauty to the runways, pages and the big screen.