Catching up with Ronnie

Make Me A Supermodel Season 1 favorite Ronnie Kroell answers our questions.

Bravotv.com: What did you do right after the show ended? What was the reaction like in your hometown?
After the show ended I went home to Chicago to reunite with my family and friends. When I got home I was blown away by the amount of phone calls, e-mails, and words of support I received from family, friends, and fans from across the nation. I was honored, humbled, and truly amazed by the entire experience. After being back in "reality" for a few weeks I took some time to really evaluate the opportunities that were available to me in Chicago and NYC. It was clear to me that I had to make the move to NYC. In August of 2008 I made the  move to pursue my dream of being a supermodel. Since then, I’ve been busy modeling and building up my book, and more recently I’ve been exploring music and acting opportunities.

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Bravotv.com: Were you surprised with how closely the Make Me A Supermodel fans connected with you and Ben?
I was happy to see that fans truly connected with the relationship that Ben and I had with each other. Our friendship blossomed and grew enormously throughout the show and our lives are forever changed because of the experience. Ben and I shared a lot with one another and most of all we learned from one another. I am happy that our fans got to come along with us on our journey, even if it was a small glimpse.

Bravotv.com: We obviously have to ask: Now that Ben and his wife live in NYC, do you guys still hang out?
Actually, it is my understanding that Ben and April have moved back to Tennessee in order to allow April the environment that she needs to pursue her music career. She has an incredible voice and I know that she is going to be a star. Ben cares a great deal for April and I know that he would do anything to make her happy — that is just the kind of guy he is. That is why I love him, in a Bronnie way of course.
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Bravotv.com: Do you still get called “Bronnie?”
Actually, yes I do still get called Bronnie. It is kind of fun to be part of pop-culture in this way, to be at the foundation of the "Bromance" craze.

Bravotv.com: Have you been watching the new season? Who do you think is standing out? (for better or for worse.)
I have caught a few episodes, but do not have a clear favorite yet. I did attend the launch party of Season 2 to support my friends Nicole Trunfio and Tyson Beckford, both true inspirations in the industry. I do still miss seeing Niki Taylor; she is the epitome of the word supermodel — beauty, style, grace, and heart.

Bravotv.com: If you had any advice for this season’s contestants, what would it be?
The best advice I can offer this season's contestants is not to let reality stardom cloud their judgement of the "real" reality — the show is just the beginning, not the end. It is important to stay just as focused, driven, and motivated after the show as they are on the show if they truly want to make it in the industry.
Bravotv.com: Where can your fans see you next?
I am working on finishing my Chemical Addictions album, reading some movie scripts, modeling, traveling on the speakers circuit, and most importantly they will see me back in school finishing my political science degree. At the heart of my work rests the genuine desire to open lines of communication, inspire others to reach their true potential, and to continue to build bridges between the gay and straight communities.

Bravotv.com: We heard you have gone into music. Please tell!
After the show, Hollywood music producer Justin Jagoda contacted me about starting a singing career. (I guess he really liked “Serenade!”) So, in October I flew to Los Angeles and spent some quality time in the studio co-writing and recording my music. I have two singles out, "Miserable Attraction," and "Taste of Her Sin". Both songs are part of a greater work in progress, an album called Chemical Addictions.

Portraying the Sexy

Tyson Beckford offers his final words on the three finalists.

Bravotv.com: We have the finale. First, the three guys have to shoot those Polaroid pictures and it was kind of less is more in those pictures. Do you think that is harder to do?
Yeah, it’s just like an actor playing himself. It’s harder to play yourself than to play someone else.

Bravotv.com: What did that opportunity mean for them to shoot with that camera and that photographer?
It’s a once in a lifetime event. Probably by now, there’s not that much film left in the world for that camera. So, not too many people are really going to have a chance to shoot with it. I was fortunate to shoot with it at least three times in my career. And I also got to shoot with it while we were on the set as well.

Bravotv.com: Who do you think did the best in that part?
I believe it went to, I have to say, the first was Branden, then the second was Sandhurst, and then Jonathan. And then once they got to the photo shoot at Cosmo, Jonathan just did the same pose. Even when they were asking him to change, he still didn’t change. He just stood there. And he even admitted, “Yo, I’m stuck in neutral.” I guess under all that pressure, he couldn’t suffice. And then again, Sanhurst, when he was asked to do something, he too couldn’t portray that sexy. And then when Brandon was up there, he just had fun with it.
I think in the last episode you see Branden having the most fun, which helped determine why he was the winner. So, that’s why it came in third, second, first, the way that it did.

Bravotv.com: Do you think the right person won?
By that, episode, yeah, I think so. He clearly was the one to accelerate when it needed to be accelerated and I personally thought Sanhurst was going to take it but he fell short with the Cosmo cover. And then he did the thing of taking his shirt off, which loosened him up, but you’ve got to be able to keep your shirt on and still do the job.

Bravotv.com: And the final catwalk. You’ve kind of been critical of Branden’s catwalk. Did you see an improvement?
Yeah, It’s definitely better. It’s not up to supermodel status but that’s what the cards dealt. It definitely got better because he took my advice and kept his hands in his pocket so it avoided his arms looking like they were swaying. He’s got this "hip-hop homeboy" style of walking when his arms are out.Bravotv.com: What would your final advice for each of them be?
Don’t quit. They’ve made it this far. They’re definitely models. Look at Jonathan who booked a2xist underwear campaign ad, which should be coming out shortly. Sanhurst just has to get out there and get his grind on like you said Jennifer Hudson did with American Idol, but she sure won an Oscar. So don’t count him out just yet. Brandon, he’ll go overseas. He’s not just going to stay here in the U.S. He’ll definitely do what Holly did. We’ll send him overseas. We saw him grow up in front of us. Like his mom send, she sent me a boy and I sent her back a man.

Bravotv.com: Are you going to continue to mentor him at all?
I always stay close to all the kids. So when they call me, I’ll hook him up. You can’t not help him. Even thought I’m not so much in that business, but it’s like riding a bike — you never forget.

Bravotv.com: What can your fans expect from your movie career and producing?
The next one is going to have some action in it. No doubt about it. We’re definitely going to put down some action in this next movie

Bravotv.com: Are you actually acting in it? Or are you producing it?
I’m acting and producing in it. I was told that two other films that were definitely on the independent film festival tour are coming out soon.

Bravotv.com: Do have any parting words?
I thank all the viewers for watching and keeping us close to their heart.