Julia Fox Was Born for TV

2 views 6:18 pm 0 Comments May 6, 2024

Julia Fox’s new TV show, OMG Fashun, is here! Airing on E!, the design competition series follows “a new generation of designers who want to shake up the fashion industry.”

How it works is that each episode sees three different fashion “disruptors” creating a look based on thematic and socially topical challenges created by Fox herself, using unconventional materials and constructed in a short amount of time. Then, the looks are presented on the runway in front of the judging panel that includes Fox, Law Roach and a guest judge. The winner with the most unexpected and subversive look is crowned the winner, awarded a $10,000 cash prize and gets their garment modeled by Fox.

To celebrate the premiere of OMG Fashun, PAPER caught up with Fox to chat about supporting emerging designers, working with Law Roach and turning the fashion industry upside down.

Hi Julia! How are you? Are you shook from this morning?

Oh my god, the earthquake. Yes. I literally thought, We’re all gonna die.

How has it been doing press for OMG Fashun?

It’s been so crazy.

Answering the same questions over and over again?

The same exact questions. You start to feel like you’re losing your mind a little bit. You know that Lady Gaga clip that went viral? That was like, “There could be 100 people in the room and 99 don’t believe in you, but one of them does.” It feels like that. Honestly like, queen. Each time she said it like it was the first time. It was so good.

Let’s talk about the show! It has me cracking up, like when you were like, “You’re canceled,” when you were eliminating people.

We wanted it to be fun and unserious. I feel like people right now need to laugh, like it’s literally life or death out here. So the content of the show is light hearted and fun and informative and also ethical. We’re upcycling. We’re doing a good thing. That’s really all I’m interested in doing these days.

How did this all come about?

From me doing my little upcycling videos online that would go viral, also discovering talent and wearing emerging designers. This show is just the perfect next step because I was already doing it, but now I get to do it on TV.

Is the common thread for the challenges upcycling?

1000 percent — I wouldn’t do it otherwise. We’ve seen so many design competition shows at this point that we need something different, and this is fun because you don’t have to be in fashion to want to see a bag of trash transformed into a couture gown. Anyone could get into that.

In every other design competition series, the most fun episodes are always unconventional materials challenges.

Exactly. You feel included because you’re like, “I have that shit at my house. I could do that.” My goal is that the viewers will take inspiration from this and actually do it at home. That, to me, is a win.

I feel like we know so many nightlife girlies who are so good at creating something from the 99 cent store and really turn it out.

And that’s really where I get so much inspiration and just felt like it needed to be the show because people that I admire are already doing this too. There is an audience for this.

Something that surprised me in a really good way was that the themes of each episode were topical in terms of real things happening now.

That was important to me too. I pretty much created every challenge for every episode, and I really wanted it to touch on a bigger social issue. Like fusing menswear and womenswear together was really important to me, because it does lead you to question gender norms and why we’re conditioned to think like, “Girls wear pink and boys wear blue.” Things like that where you’re like, “Wait, this was all made up. This isn’t even real.” I really wanted to break that down and get maybe a larger audience to play around with what that means.

What are some other topics you touch on?

We have the single-use plastic challenge because there’s single-use plastic everywhere in everything. And there’s the nature challenge, obviously inspired by my leaf dress that went viral. There’s a lot!

I didn’t expect there to be different designers each episode as opposed to the usual format of people getting eliminated each episode.

We went back and forth on how we were going to do it, but we felt like this way would showcase more designers. It gave us room to bring back people that had been eliminated, so there is a moment where that comes into play too. It also allows for people to win in every episode. Someone walks away with $10,000 in every episode, and that’s really cool. If I were a contestant, I would definitely like that.

Each format has its pros and cons, but we also had to shoot it in such a short time. The first season of any show is like, not like the biggest. We just had to make do with what we had, but I think it’s fucking sick. I love it.

You and Law read the contestants down, obviously in a constructive way, but I was living.

It was hard in the beginning — I’m not gonna lie. Then I think I got my footing. I didn’t want to hurt their feelings, and this shit is subjective. Everyone is valid in their design. Also I feel for them. I know how hard it is to work in a time crunch with things changing at the last minute. Some people don’t work well under pressure. Some people start second-guessing themselves or overthinking. I had to turn that part of my brain off and be like, “No, I need to judge what is in front of me.” So it was a learning curve for me. Law was a natural. Law did not give a shit. Law did not come to play. She speaks her mind!

What was it like working together?

A dream come true. I had been trying to work with Law for years since Uncut Gems came out. I reached out to Law to style me, and his team came back and were like, “He’s too busy and can’t take you on.” But I was like I’m not giving up — I’m gonna circle back with something else. So when I was making my dream wish list of co-hosts, I put his name down first. But in the back of my mind, I was like, “He’s gonna reject me again.” This was also during the time when he had quit styling, so I was like, “I might actually have a shot here.” When he came back and said he would do it, it was like the best day of my life.

There was a lot of time I was leaning on Law. I’d be looking at Law for cues for what to do, and Law has such a calming presence. She’s so grounded. I felt like I was in really good hands. There would be times when I was just speechless and didn’t even know what to fucking say, but Law would steer the ship and then I could chime in. Law was so instrumental in this. I wouldn’t do this without Law, period.

The guest judges are so fun too.

I wanted to bring people that are style icons to me, people I just love, people I’ve wanted to work with, people I admire, people I respect. Jordan Roth? Like, wow. Phaedra Parks, I’ve been watching on TV since I was a fucking kid. She came in the Dolce and Gabbana birdcage shoes. Icon alert! Everybody was amazing.

Who else are we going to see?

Wisdom Kay, who I’m obsessed with on TikTok and have been following forever, makes the best content. When people ask me whose closet I’d like to rummage through, it’s definitely Wisdom Kay’s closet. That boy has everything under the sun. It’s wild. The best collection I’ve ever seen in my life. I love him — so nice and such a class act. Everyone we brought on was just such a good person.

It’s tough for the first season of a show. Some people say no, and some people are busy. I get it. We shot in Atlanta, and no one wants to come on a show that they don’t even know if it’s actually going to be good, so the people that came actually believed in it and believed in us. That there alone is like, I love them for life.

They believe in you! And you’re an aquarius, too, right? We can’t help but be honest and be ourselves.

Yeah, and we’re entering the Age of Aquarius so shit’s about to get wild. Everyone can feel it, I think. We’re questioning everything. We’re like, “Wait, why? What’s the point of this again?” It’s like the rose-colored glasses are coming off, and we’re seeing shit for the way it actually is. There’s a reckoning. There’s an awakening. There’s a vibe shift. I love it. It all needs to burn the fuck down to the ground and get rebuilt properly.

Even in fashion, we’re seeing that the way we’ve been doing things simply are not working anymore.

The audience wants something different. If you’re being served beef and potatoes every fucking night of your life, there’s gonna come a time where you want to try something different. Right? But they can’t. They’re fucking dinosaurs. They can’t do anything other than what they know how to do, and they’re afraid to let go of their post and give it up to someone who might actually know what the fuck they’re doing and know what people want to see. It’s so frustrating and aggravating. Sometimes I feel like I am being gaslit like 24/7.

Was going from making your own content to working with network TV challenging?

What I will say with NBC was that they were so amazing. They were on set with us, and they just let us do what the fuck we want it. They really trusted us, which I heard is actually very uncommon, but they saw the first couple of days of filming and were like, “You guys got this. No notes. Keep doing what you’re doing.” It was really exciting that they were so excited because they actually do this, while this is all new to me. I don’t know what’s normal. I don’t know what the standards are. I’m just going into it blindly. So to have them just be like, “You’re doing great.” That was pretty surreal.

Maybe because you’re pretty secure in who you are.

There was a moment when I was on set for the first day, and I was a little nervous like, “Oh my god, will I be able to do this?” I got to put on my best host voice and go out there. Then I was like, “Oh, I was born to do this.” It just came really naturally.

Do you keep in contact with a lot of the contestants?

At the end of every taping, I would tell my stylist to go get their number. I’ve made sure that relationships were built. Even if they didn’t win the episode, they would still get to see me wearing their clothes.

Did Briana style you for the show?

Of course, and she fucking slayed it. Every outfit I wore was upcycled, and it was all on theme with whatever the challenge was going to be.

I love that you mostly only work with people you’ve known forever.

I only work with people I’ve known forever. It’s like our little factory. We have harmony and work well together, and they can read my mind. With some people, when you’re no longer useful to them, they discard you. They’re not about actually building long lasting relationships. They just want to get something.

Are you still focusing on acting, as well?

I’m definitely still acting. I don’t want to get pigeonholed. I want to be able to do an array of things because I have so many interests, and I love so many mediums. If you’re an artist, that’ll shine through no matter what the medium in front of you is. You’re gonna make it your own. You’re gonna have your vision and your unique take. It’s all about self-expression, and there’s more than one way to express yourself. We’re Aquarians, babe, our life mission is different. God gave us the harder task.

Where do you think OMG Fashun will take you?

I’m just hoping and praying for season 2! I hope it does well, and I hope we can continue. My mission in this arena has just begun. I would love to eventually have my own room and stage at New York Fashion Week and have shows for our contestants. Like I think that would be so fucking cool. I want to make this like a bootcamp program, like we fucking help you build your collection and debut it and then maybe film that too and make it like a spinoff of the competition show. There’s so many directions this could go in you know, but it just needs to do well. I know people don’t really watch TV anymore like that, but I hope they will for this.

We’re manifesting now and only speaking out into the universe that it’ll do well.

Thank you. I love you.

I have to hop off, but I really appreciate you taking the time for us.

Thank you! I’m sure I’ll see you soon. Bye, baby.

Photos courtesy of E! Entertainment/ NBCUniversal Media, LLC

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