- July 2002
An American Beauty...
The woman we'd all love to
look like has definitely changed. She's still as American as fireworks
on the Fourth of July, but she isn't blond, blue-eyed or even particularly
tall. Perfect example: mulitcultural, multifaceted, multitalented Josie
By Barbara Sgroi
...is naturally healthy
Over the last few years, there's been a
change in our ideas about beauty. "People want to see a model who
inspires strength and self-confidence now," explains modeling guru
Katie Ford, president of Ford Models. Open any current magazine and
you'll find fresh-faced American beauties like Josie Maran, whose look
exemplifies the new ideal. A 23-year-old [she is now 25],
5' 6" California-born woman, Maran has the confidence to face the
world looking perfectly unadorned and natural (she came to our photo
shoot...straight out of bed!). "I think the emphasis on cleanliness
is very much an American tradition," explains Kathy Peiss, author
of Hope in a Jar: The Making of America's Beauty Culture (Owl Books).
"American women make up their faces to have a clean look."
And unlike the blond-haired, blue-eyed standard popular in the seventies--"That's
when the American images was actually Swedish," laughs Ford--today
there isn't one look that represents a national fantasy. "My dad
is Russian and Polish; my mom is French, Dutch, and German," says
Maran. "I'm an American mutt!"
...is happily flawed
Not perfect? Not a problem. Maran is living
proof that feeling beautiful can have as much to do with your mind as
with your mirror. When an emergency appendectomy at age 12 left her
with a big abdominal scar, Maran tried to keep it out of sight. "Growing
up, I was very self-conscious about it," she recalls. "I always
felt that everybody was staring at it. But I've learned to love it.
Now I don't even try to hide it anymore--my scar is part of me."
And happily, she's not the only American beauty with that I-love-myself-warts-and-all
attitude. "Americans are more accepting of their bodies than before.
More and more women are saying, 'This is how I am--this is my body,
and frankly, I like it,' " says Gunnar Peterson, personal trainer
to stars such as Jennifer Lopez, Penélope Cruz and Jennifer Connelly.
"Their goals are different. The scale no longer dictates what makes
them happy. Now it's more about the way you feel and function than just
the way you look."
...can transform herself at night
Looking glamorous is a state of mind, not
just the state of your makeup, insists New York City makeup artist Charlie
Green: "American women don't go for an exaggerated look when they
go out, whereas French women won't leave home without red lipstick."
And morphing from Girl Next Door to Gorgeous is surprisingly simple.
"Women know that putting your hair up is like slipping on a pair
of high heels--it instantly makes you feel sexy and dressed up,"
says New York City hairstylist Colin Gold.
"Being comfortable in your own
skin makes you incredibly attractive," says Maran.
...can be a tomboy and still feel
You're more likely to find Maran chasing
a Frisbee on the beach or outside playing basketball with friends than
sweating away in a gym. "Running on a treadmill is a drag--I'd
rather make working out fun," says Maran. "I love nature and
trees. I grew up playing in the dirt." So it's not surprising that
when it comes to wearing makeup, this tree hugger chooses an outdoorsy
glow. "An American beauty is a woman who looks fresh and healthy,"
explains Ford. "She might be wearing makeup, but it looks completely
natural." Green agrees: "American women take care of their
skin--the last thing they want to do is hide it under a lot of foundation."
Maran doesn't need layers of eyeshadow or yards of frills to feel beautiful.
"I feel just as feminine barefoot in jeans," she laughs. Now
that's a beautiful thing.
"American women want to look approachable;
European women want to look unattainable," explains Green.
...has a sense of humor
Maran was born with that winning smile.
(Thanks to her grin, she's landed on six Glamour covers.) "Smiling
is very American," explains author Peiss. "It's a deeply embedded
cultural pattern that goes back at least to the eighteenth century."
And these days, we value a smile more than ever. "It's a very difficult
time in the world right now," says Ford. "People need to see
happy images and a positive attitude." Whether Maran is cracking
jokes in front of the camera or just clowning around with her family,
the last person she's likely to take seriously is herself. "Being
very positive has helped me a lot," says Maran, who at age 12 set
her sights on becoming a supermodel. Where does her total confidence
come from? "My family," she says with a smile. "They
provided so much support and love that I always believed in me."
Gene Simmons TONGUE - Spring
writer MICHAEL MOSES
FOX ON THE RUN
Breaking the rules with Sports Illustrated swimsuit model and actress
Josie Maran. Or, advice on squirting cows milk, hugging pigs and having
sex twice a day.
When Maybelline signed Josie Maran to
a spokesmodel contract in 1999, the makeup manufacturer thought it was
getting the same doe-eyed ingenue who had graced the covers of Seventeen,
Shape and Glamour, and appeared in ads for Levis and Guess? Jeans. But
there's more to the stunning Maran than meets the eye. Amid carefully
packaged mannequins, the 23-year-old [she is now 25]
Northern California native is disarmingly candid. One minute she's talking
about sending a vibrator to her mother (it was a gift), then she's discussing
her need to have sex at least twice a day.
Two years ago, Maran appeared on The Howard
Stern Show with then-boyfriend David Blaine and talked about performing
some magic tricks of her own, including bringing other girls into their
bedroom. Said a hot and bothered Howard afterward: "She's the perfect
Naturally, to a growing legion of drooling
fans, Maran's irreverent candor makes her all the more alluring. There
have been times, however, when her uncorked, fizzy id has landed her
in hot water. She recently raised eyebrows -- and a few other body parts
-- by appearing in a racy ad campaign for the Benetton-owned Sisley
clothing brand. The provocative photos, which show Maran having fun
with farm animals, have been studied like conspiracy theorists pouring
over the Zapruder film. In one of the more controversial snapshots,
she's seen shooting milk on her face from a cow's udder (try to imagine
the Got Milk? campaign as filmed by Seymour Butts). "I was just
having fun," says Maran. "I didn't think it was a big deal
at the time."
The sight of moo juice dripping from Maran's
pretty chin was more than Maybelline was willing to swallow. "That
campaign definitely caused some drama in my life," she says. "Maybelline
would like me to keep myself contained and ladylike and they're right.
They let me get away with a smack on the wrist and I respect that very
much. My mother keeps telling me to think before I do or say something,
and make sure it's what I really want to project. I'm definitely learning."
The tricky part is figuring out which
rules to bend, make or break. "I forget that when I'm having fun,
the innocence of it might not come across in pictures," she says.
"Those photos didn't feel sexual when we were shooting them. When
I look at the pictures now, I can see that it's a little too much, but
I believe in pushing the limit a bit. In one picture, I'm hugging a
pig -- just because I like pigs -- so of course, people said I was humping
the pig, which I wasn't. It sucks that people want to distort these
things. I need to figure out where to draw the line. For starters,"
she laughs, "No more hugging pigs."
That's easier said than done, especially
with Maran making the move to Hollywood. The 5' 7" model-turned-actress
recently made the jump to the big screen as Mallory in The Mallory Effect,
an indie comedy about a jilted boyfriend seeking revenge. "When
I saw the finished version, I was freaked out and didn't want to watch
it," she laughs. "People had to hold me down in my chair.
But it's a funny movie and the laughter eased the pain. Although you
can tell that it's my first film, I think I did a pretty good job. I
was proud of myself."
Youthful hubris aside, Maran certainly
seems to know what she's doing. Since her modeling debut at age 12,
she's appeared in a Backstreet Boys video (after which Howie hit on
her -- unsuccessfully), a gaggle of commercials and several magazines,
including the 2002 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. "I'm just
a girl who's soul-searching and living her life," she says with
a smile. "And I'm trying to do both as creatively as possible."
REV - Spring
Josie Maran really knows how to
give a guy a breakup.
BY MARC WEISBLOTT
When you've been dumped by Josie Maran,
you've been dumped by the best of them. In between collecting exes,
this 23-year-old [she is now 25] model has been a Guess?
Girl and a Maybelline maven, and she achieved mid-'90s notoriety for
actually kissing a Backstreet Boy in one of their videos. (The horror!
The horror!) Most recently, the native Californian took her tough-love
experience to the streets of Hollywood, landing the lead role in The
Mallory Effect, a movie about -- you guessed it -- a girl that guys
just can't leave behind. REV gets Josie's breakdown on big breaks.
Now that you're acting, are you
going to retire from modelling?
I've been modelling since I was 12, but everyone always assumed I was
an actress, not a model, because I'm only 5' 7" -- I don't fit
into a lot of the model clothes! I feel short when I'm around other
Yet you knew you wanted to do this from such a young age?
Oh, for sure. It wasn't like I had a stage mom. We were at a family
party and someone from an agency in San Francisco suggested I should
sign up. And for the next five years me and my mom would make the drive
together for me to do catalogue shoots.
The first widespread exposure you had was in that cheesy BSB
Yep. I got soooo much attention from doing that. The song was "Everybody
(Backstreet's Back)," and Howie was sucking blood from my neck,
like a vampire. They were very nice boys, that's all I have to say.
Myself, I prefer listening to The Strokes.
So, what is it about models dating rock stars?
I wouldn't know. I never dated one. That's, like, something from the
Cindy Crawford years.
You were dating a magic star, David Blaine, when he buried himself
alive in a giant block of ice for 62 hours in Times Square (Nov. 2000).
He was preparing that stunt for an entire year, and it did get to him.
He was hallucinating at the end. It just proved he was human, and he
was bound to break down.
If you haven't hung around rock stars, what are magicians like
to hang around?
I lived with David, but I didn't want to know his secrets. I wanted
to be surprised. As for magicians I've met, I'd call most of them, hmm...interesting?
Are you worried about the model-turned-actress stereotype?
Well, I'm trying to not just play sexy obvious-beautiful-girl parts.
Shannon Elizabeth (American Pie) recently said she won't be doing any
more nude scenes, since that's all she's known for.
I suppose she realized she won't get much respect just doing teen movies.
I'm definitely gearing myself toward more respected roles.
Are there any actresses whose work you especially admire?
Not too many today -- Emily Watson, Juliette Lewis. But the old woman
in Harold and Maude, Ruth Gordon, who is being romanced by a twenty-year-old
guy, she's the greatest.
Can you see yourself at age eighty?
You know what? I can. I don't know where I'll be, but it will definitely
be far away from here.
So was it difficult seeing yourself on the big screen?
I had to ask the people sitting nearby to hold me down so I wouldn't
bolt from the theatre. But The Mallory Effect was the best-attended
screening at the Slam Dance Film Festival (Jan. 2002). The audience
seemed to find it really funny, and I was able to laugh that pain away.
And the character Mallory knows about pain?
I play a girl who breaks up with one boyfriend who becomes so obsessed
with me, he'll do anything to break up my next relationship.
You've lived the part, perhaps?
For sure. All my exes have kept in touch, and they all suggest that
we should still be in love. They still feel attached. I don't know what
I'm doing to come off like that. Maybe it happens to every woman, I
Based on some guys I know, what you described arguably happens
to every man.
Guys need to understand that I've moved on and I won't play the romantic
part. I haven't learned to be cold. But I try to be straight-up. Really,
isn't this the sort of thing I should be telling my psychiatrist?
Do you see a psychiatrist?
No, but I have an acting coach.
GLAMOUR - April 2002
Who is she, anyway?
We usually do a one-word interview with our cover model, but Josie Maran's
been on the cover so often, she gets two!
Hey, you were just on our cover
last year. How does it feel to be back?
You recently returned from a month
in Thailand. What'd you wear?
The best part was...
If you weren't a model, what would
You've already done one movie.
Who's your role model?
You flew to New York and back to
L.A. the day of our shoot. Any time for you?
You travel a lot--what's your biggest
What bugs you about them?
What's your favorite hobby?
One last Q: What does this cover
look say to you?
Sundance Stunner: Josie Maran
By Karin Nelson
Fashion Wire Daily - Park City,
UT - January 16, 2002
"I'm a totally sexual person,"
claims model-turned-actress Josie Maran with a shrug. "And sometimes
-- with the clothes and the poses -- I just don't know how sexy I can
At Sundance to do press for her first feature
film, "The Mallory Effect," in which she stars alongside "Roswell"'s
Steven Roy, the 23-year-old [she is now 25] Maybelline
model is referring to some risqué Sisley ad campaign shots, snapped
by Terry Richardson, in which she appears in compromising positions
with a cow.
"I was on a farm, just having fun,"
she says of the ad. "Terry is like a good director - he frees you,
and, well, Maybelline just wasn't psyched about the whole thing."
Of most concern to the cosmetic giant,
which has Maran under a five-year contract? Well, besides the pic of
the pouty-lipped minx lifting up her shirt, there's one in which a cow
(who, apparently, hadn't been milked for two days) is relieving itself
into Maran's mouth. Says Maran: "I was grossed out at first, but
it was the most delicious milk I'd ever tasted - fresh and warm."
Maran, who's modeled now for 10 years,
has recently made the move from New York back to L.A., started acting
lessons, and, like the James Kings, Shalom Harlows, Amber Valettas,
Michelle Hicks and Estella Warrens of the world, is attempting to segue
from magazine covers to big-screen billboards. In her role as Mallory
in "The Mallory Effect," she plays a gorgeous, sexual woman
who breaks the hearts of several men. Fortunately for Maran, the role
wasn't much of a stretch, for when shooting began she had yet to take
any acting classes.
"It's hard to watch the film,"
she claims, hiding her face with her hands. "I was so nervous and
scared that I was tight, instead of just having fun." Stressing,
"I know now I have so much more to offer."
Presently, spending her days auditioning
for big films, modeling for Maybelline, and dating a boy who she refers
to as "just chill" (unlike her magician ex-boyfriend of two
years, David Blaine, with whom she claims "things were too weird
for them to be normal"), Maran's life is as easygoing as the khakis,
Batz Maru comic tee, and old Pumas of an outfit she's sporting today.
"I have the best life, and I have no idea how it happened. I have
good stars, I guess, or there's someone looking out for me."