February 23, 2004 12:10 PM

Between tears, rivalries and bad haircuts, no opportunity to vamp is spared as America’s Next Top Model (9 p.m. ET Tuesdays on UPN) narrows the runway from 12 pretty faces to one for a lucrative agency contract. With the competition among the six remaining hopefuls getting cattier, the show’s creator, supermodel Tyra Banks – also an executive producer and judge on the recently renewed reality series – gives us a preview of the action (including a heavy hookup) to come.

So what can we look forward to?
The last six weeks are my favorite. There’s the premiere of my music video and the girls are going to be in it. (The song – Tyra’s musical debut – is called “Shake Ya Body.”)

I also heard there’s a bit of an orgy on the way?
The girls are really stressed and nervous from being cooped up and having no contact with the outside world in the first half of the show, and they kind of go at it with the male models, like a makeout session.

And you were okay with that?
One of the girls has some negative things because of that, and it teaches her to be responsible for her actions.

How do this season’s girls compare to last season’s?
These girls are a lot more competitive. They aren’t so much about, “Oh I want to be the best of friends.” They want it so bad they can taste it.

Because the first show was a hit, do these girls expect a lot more?
I feel like some of the girls are a little bit spoiled. I might give them a critique and they don’t want to listen to that, but they don’t understand that I personally chose them to be there and I want them to be the best they can be.

Being critiqued on everything, from hair to makeup to weight to style, is just part of being a model, right?
It never ends, even when you’re a star. A lot of them are the prettiest girls in their hometown, and they come to Top Model and think the judges are going to say, “You’re perfect.” And they don’t know how to react when that doesn’t happen.

You’ve clearly been disappointed by some of the contestants’ performances. Can you give an example of something you wish had been handled differently?
I was very upset that Catie (who was recently dismissed) was upset with her haircut. She went from looking like a normal girl to looking like a model!

Have any of the girls surprised you in a positive way?
I’m really happy with Shandi’s transformation. She’s an example to young girls everywhere who may feel that they’re the geek, or not the beautiful girl, that there’s something to grow into. A good hair and makeup team and anything’s possible. But her transformation is not just physical; she’s getting stronger.

UPN recently announced they’re picking up Top Model for two more seasons. Any hints of what’s to come?
We have it all mapped out. We were hoping this would happen. Now we just have to do it.

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