Where Style Meets Substance

Hollywood fashion expert, VIP personal shopper and commentator Joseph "Joe" Katz brings you interviews with celebrities and influencers about their style and personal experiences. He also shares the best beauty & lifestyle tips and tricks to help you look and feel your best.

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Jaime King: Supermodel and Actress Shares Her Rise to Fashion and Film Fame

Jaime King: Supermodel and Actress Shares Her Rise to Fashion and Film Fame

Jaime King is one of the top supermodels internationally and has worked on the runway alongside top models Naomi Campbell, Kate Moss, and Shalom Harlow as well as designers Alexander McQueen and Karl Lagerfeld (to name a few!). Jaime shares a few of her very personal stories about growing up in a small midwestern town before moving to New York City at 14 years old to pursue her career. She also provides insight into her history in the industry.

Follow Jaime King on Instagram and Twitter!


Photo Courtesy of Deadline



The Katz Walk is a production of Evergreen Podcasts. A special thank you to Executive Producer Gerardo Orlando, Producer Leah Longbrake and Audio Engineer Dave Douglas.

Joe Katz:
Jaime King, thank you so much for joining the show.

Jaime King:
Hi, thank you for having me.

Joe Katz:
Yes. You look so fresh and clean and so fresh and pretty and clean. And I love your necklace, that's so cool. That chunky trend that's going on.

Jaime King:
Dior gave it to me.

Joe Katz:
Oh yeah. It's Dior. Yeah. Oh, I love that. People are doing a lot of layering and all of that stuff.

Jaime King:
Yes. I love all the layers. Chunky, chunky.

Joe Katz:
Chunky, chunky everything. Yes. Wow. Well, thank you so much for coming. We have so much to talk about, so many things to talk about. I want to learn everything about you. People probably know you as... You started your career in modeling. Then you have done some amazing stuff in acting with your new show that's actually now you're on your second season. I think you said you just finished your third season of Black Summer, which is awesome.

Jaime King:
Yes, just finished second season.

Joe Katz:
Oh, second season. Second season. Yes. Wow. That's awesome. I love to have true conversations and you're so honest about so much stuff. I love that. I want the audience to just really hear who is Jaime King. We've heard so much about you. But I think your story is so fascinating about how you grew up. Because I grew up in the Midwest and you grew up in Nebraska, right?

Jaime King:
Yes. In Omaha, Nebraska

Joe Katz:
Omaha, Nebraska. So how did it all start Jaime? How did it all start? Did modeling choose you or did you think, Ooh, I want to be a model or how did it all start?

Jaime King:
I just remember always loving fashion. I always loved fashion clothing, photography, films, music. I think it was my love for the arts. Ever since I was very little, I remember seeing particular covers of magazines that were really striking to me. And it wasn't about the magazine per se, but it was about the feeling that it gave me. There was one that just popped into my mind. It was, I think, do you know the model [Nadya 00:02:19] and it was [Demaj Liyay 00:02:20] . It was a close-up of her face and those blue eyes. And there was something that was blue on the cover with the red lips. And it was shot very kind of seventies with like a ring flash about this striking experience.

Jaime King:
And then there was a cover of Harper's Bazaar, I believe, with, I think, it was Naomi and Kate. And it was the Marc Jacobs, the collection from when grunge was popping off. It was like the year of Nirvana and all that stuff. And the sun eyebrows and all of that. Then I just thought of the grease album cover of Olivia Newton and John Travolta, and her and her smoking hot black look. There's something about music, film, fashion that always made me feel like somehow I was seen or heard as a kid growing up in the Midwest who was very different than other kids.

Jaime King:
And the idea that style is a way to communicate, it's a language. And allowed me to express who I was as a human being when I was young and I didn't necessarily know. It's like, you've got to try on all these different parts and all of these different experiences just through clothing.

Joe Katz:
Right. And so how did it happen? So when you were 14, did you go into a modeling contest or did you go to an agency?

Jaime King:
I saw an advertisement in the local newspaper, in the Omaha World Herald for [Nancy Ballance 00:00:04:07] Modeling School. And I begged my parents to save the money so I could go because I was like... And it said that in this ad that you would meet agents from big cities. And as a kid that had never gone to a city. Well, I went one time, I think. Yeah, one time I went to Chicago. And I was like, that's it, that's how I get out of here. I never felt like I fit growing up in Omaha. I was bullied. I looked a certain way. I didn't feel like I fit because my sense of style or what my interests were, were very different than the kids around me. I wanted to just voraciously read books and watch films and study art, and it wasn't the coolest thing. In my soul, I knew what it is that I wanted to do. I wanted to be an artist and I wanted to be a filmmaker and I wanted to learn everything that I could about the world. And that to me was like... I'll never forget that mom. I was like this is how I do it. And I was actually 13 at the time 13. And then I met an agent from New York who is a very big agent and that's how it started.

Joe Katz:
Wow. In school, what were you bullied about? Because I talk about bullying too. Because I went through that growing up in Iowa. I was the weird gay kid that loved plaid pants and penny loafers.

Jaime King:
Exactly.

Joe Katz:
And everybody was like, penny loafers? You're weird. Or boat shoes. Oh, it was like, if you have boat shoes, no, that was awful. What were you bullied about?

Jaime King:
It's seemingly everything, and I didn't quite understand why. The way that I would put clothes together. They'd say, Oh, did your dad dress you in the dark or [inaudible 00:06:11]. My mom was a seamstress. She could make anything. And so we would go to the fabric store and I would pick out these really wild animal prints with neon colors and have her make my leggings, went to the Goodwill. I always had this very eclectic sense of style that didn't fit what it was supposed to be in school. And also the things that everybody wanted to wear, we couldn't necessarily afford. So it wasn't like it was like a Spree and Limited express and Guess Jeans and Benetton and all of that kind of stuff.

Jaime King:
And so I was making up my own. Not even making it up, it's just I dressed the way that I loved. And I remember consistently being terrified, like literally terrified to go to school because the girls didn't like me, the boys didn't like me. It was pretty horrific. It made me feel actually physically unsafe because when you're a kid and you're being bullied, you just never know because your fight or flight's always activated. And I thought it was me. I'm like, what is wrong with me? What is wrong with me that I can't somehow fit into any group. It was a very candid story, but I remember I got my first pair of Limited express pants and I was like, this is it. Today's going to be the day. I'm going to go to school and they're going to love me. That's it.

Jaime King:
And they were white with black polka dots. And I was on the bus and I remember being so excited to be on the bus in the morning and go to school. And at lunchtime I walked in the cafeteria and there was the cool kids, the popular group started waving me over. And I remember, it was literally like a movie when you're just like, are they... That moment. Where you're like, is it me? Who are they waving at? And I'm like, Oh, the pants.

Joe Katz:
They liked it.

Jaime King:
I was like, Oh, it must be the pants. So they're waving me over. And I come over and the boys had napkins and they put ketchup all over the napkins. And they started throwing them at me. And I run into the bathroom and I'm like balling. And I looked down and I got my period for the first time. So I had bled through these pants the first time I had my period. No one told me, obviously, and that was my experience of school of coming into being a woman. It was so traumatic. And this stuff is happening every day and nobody will just give details about it. And worse than that, obviously. And so it was one of those things where I was like I just don't... you know when people give you a puzzle, it's in a box and there's a picture on it. It's like somehow we're supposed to fit ourselves into these correct pieces so that we're a part of a collective, a collective picture of the way that we're supposed to look, feel, see, be a part of.

Jaime King:
And now I realized at 41 that we don't belong in a box of someone else's picture. It's all really an illusion. We all have our own identities and we come into that through our wisdom and as we grow older. And I'm thankful though for those experiences because it gave me so much empathy and so much compassion and really understanding. I think I felt like the underdog and the outcast. And so I related to people that grew up feeling differently or thinking differently. And that's a really profound thing because those tend to be the artists of this world. The ones that just didn't know where they fit, because they could see things in a different way.

Joe Katz:
Right. They didn't fit in like the typical group or stuff like that. What was your saving grace daily if it felt so hard? Because I totally understand. I kept thinking like, when is this going to be over? When is this going to be over? I want to get out of school. I want to become a working adult or I just wanted to be out. And I was like, how do I get out of Iowa? You know?

Jaime King:
That's all I thought too. That's why I was like, this is it. Here's your saving grace.

Joe Katz:
Oh, the modeling?

Jaime King:
Yeah. My saving grace honestly I think it was my imagination. It was my imagination.

Joe Katz:
And what did you imagine?

Jaime King:
Oh, I would make up anything. I would play by myself all the time. I would just go to parks and make up these worlds and characters and gather my cousins around and make plays. And I read a lot, read a lot, listen to a lot of music, played piano a lot. I took a lot of pictures. I really love photography. So I would collect cameras and take pictures and go to the dark room and things like that. It was really what it is that I still do now. That was my saving grace.

Joe Katz:
Wow. That's interesting. But you went to 13. And then at 14, what happened then?

Jaime King:
At 14, I went to New York.

Joe Katz:
So you were in what high school or no? Or junior high.

Jaime King:
Yes. In high school.

Joe Katz:
High school.

Jaime King:
And I went to New York over the summer and with my mother and it was one of those things where it was immediate. One of my first shoots was for the first issue of Visionaire with Steven Klein and James Kaliardos.

Joe Katz:
This was your first summer there?

Jaime King:
Yes. And so immediately I was shooting for [Spingham Harper's 00:12:26] and Vogue. It was something that happened very quickly. And I didn't understand it because I was a kid and I just thought it was definitely a phenomenon, but I didn't know. And when I went to go back to school, my agent told my mother your daughter is a star. And coming from where we come from, we can't wrap our heads around that, my mother or me or anything like that. And he's like, she can do correspondence courses for school and moved to New York and she'll be chaperoned and taken care of, which is not true.

Joe Katz:
Oh, it wasn't true that you were being chaperoned and taken care of, no?

Jaime King:
No. That's why the guild rules are so important that they have they in Hollywood and for acting. If you're a minor, you have to have your parents. There's school on the set. There're very strict rules. And in the fashion industry, they didn't exist at that time. So it was one of those things where I was a kid and everything happened very quickly. And I didn't know how to share that with my parents. And I thought if I did, then I would never be able to stay. So it was again, another really interesting thing. And you grow up very quickly at those experiences. But the experiences that I had have, again when I look at them, really contributed to me and to what it is I do as a storyteller, because I've experienced so many things from such a young age that it's amazing.

Joe Katz:
So Jaime, I know this is a lot of stuff, but I think people would find it so interesting to hear what you... Because I find it fascinating when I read about your story too. So when you were 14, so then you ended up staying in New York. Your mom went back to Nebraska or did she stay with you?

Jaime King:
No, she went back to Nebraska because I have siblings. I was staying with one of the editors of Harper's Bazaar at that time. And then I stayed in a model apartment for like a month. And I had my own place by the time I was 15.

Joe Katz:
You were living on your own?

Jaime King:
Yeah.

Joe Katz:
Holy moly. Oh my God. So then, were you doing school while you were in New York?

Jaime King:
I was doing correspondence courses. And then as soon as I went to New York also then you have the fashion shows. Then I was traveling all over the world. The order at that time, it was London shows then Milan, then Paris, then New York. And that happened very quickly too. I remember one of my first shows was Tom Ford for Gucci. And there was this moment where I look up and I realized Naomi Campbell is right in front of me. And I turned around and Kate Moss is right behind me. I'm just like, Oh my God. It was like those kind of moments where it's like, how is this happening? How is this happening?

Jaime King:
With these extraordinary designers working for a different [mesons 00:00:16:00]. Having their own... Like Karl Lagerfeld. He was one of the first designers that I worked with. And so it was like Karl for Chanel, Karl for Fendi, and [Chloe 00:16:11]-

Joe Katz:
Oh, you worked for all those?

Jaime King:
Yeah. karl Lagerfeld for Karl Lagerfeld. Then we had John Galliano. Then John Galliano got Dior. So then we did John Galliano, Dior. And Lee McQueen. I met Alexander McQueen when I was 14. We met on his very first collection. And I did every show of his until I stopped. He was a very, very dear friend of mine. And to have these experiences where we was using fabric from his apartment because he couldn't afford certain things, from his drapes, from his apartment. Just these wild experiences where you see people start from the very beginning and really achieve their dreams. And that forms a real bond.

Joe Katz:
Wow. Oh, so you would hang out with him, with McQueen?

Jaime King:
Oh yes. Yeah, he was a very good friend of mine. Yes.

Joe Katz:
Wow. And you walked for Karl Lagerfeld and his shows?

Jaime King:
Yeah. I mean, yes. Karl, Tom, Westwood, basically all of them.

Joe Katz:
Wow. What's the most interesting thing? We hear about things behind the scenes and the shows and it's like, is a chaotic? What's an interesting thing that happens behind the scenes like that. We don't know that nobody would really know.

Jaime King:
Then, I don't know how it is now, but I remember one week in Paris, I had 26 shows. So 26 shows-

Joe Katz:
In one day?

Jaime King:
In one week.

Joe Katz:
Oh, in one week. Right, in one week. [crosstalk 00:17:56].

Jaime King:
... you're running from [Driss Benoit00:17:58] and [Demi Meister 00:17:59] to then Jean Colonna to then... Well, Karl Lagerfeld would always start at like five in the morning. There was never any food. It was just champagne, orange juice and croissants. So you start with one show and then you're racing to the next one. They're like ripping your hair out, scrubbing your face down, taking off whatever nails. And at that time it was so... And especially like in Paris. Paris was my favorite because it was to me the most wildly creative. You had your Diors doing these. And Sam Ignites needed these extraordinary artists that are doing some of the most phenomenal things that you've ever seen with hair and makeup and individual looks. The Galliano shows were a theater and these shows were a theater.

Jaime King:
And that's when I knew in those shows that my love of acting and having never acted before was something that I needed to do because of the experience that I felt when you had that kind of freedom. So behind the scenes, I think it's like literally like all of the race, race, race, race, race, race, race, and nobody knows that you literally just got to that venue. Roughly five minutes before you're walking down a runway and you have 10 people doing everything at the same time when you're in demand like that. So it was a very... And again, I can't imagine it's like that now, but at that time it was a time where supermodels really had so much power. A core of us that would do all the shows together. And so it was a very-

Joe Katz:
You were one of the big supermodels of that time. I mean, with Naomi and all of them, Kate.

Jaime King:
And Shalom and Amber Valletta, Carolyn Murphy. Just these amazing, amazing women.

Joe Katz:
That's crazy. Wow. And so they're changing you every time. Just so people understand, during those shows in Paris and London and all of that, they're changing you between takes right. You just stand there or do you jump into new outfits or how does it work within minutes, right?

Jaime King:
Well, you go from one show to another show, so you're doing that within minutes. So it's like, imagine it's like a quick change of the most extravagant hair and makeup, everything. And then they dress you as quick as they can. You're out there, you're walking. You come back, you race back. They take all the clothes off you. You put all this stuff back on. It's crazy.

Joe Katz:
Craziness, yeah. Wow. And so then you were doing all... So that you were 15 or 16 at the time?

Jaime King:
I started doing that at 14.

Joe Katz:
Wow. Were you by yourself then? Or was your mom she had to be with your brothers and sister, right?

Jaime King:
She was with my brothers and sisters. But again, you have to understand that's the thing that the industry did then. They told your family that you were being chaperoned by your agent, by these adults. And really like, the adults were wild and crazy and creative, and didn't understand that it's completely unethical to do something like that. Otherwise my mother would not have let me do that.

Joe Katz:
Were you scared?

Jaime King:
I think that children are incredibly resilient. And I think that I was so scared of just having to stay in Omaha, that, that kind of fear was matched with whatever fear that I had about being away and being young and without my parents. And when you're a teenager, you want to be a part of the group. So I was like, I just want to be a part of the crew. But everyone was so much older than me. I just did whatever I could to assimilate to be with these women and was seen as a woman even though I was a child. And that part was really difficult because I forgot because I wasn't taught that it was okay to just be a kid. There was so much responsibility. And then all of a sudden you go from having really no money to making so much money at that time. And it's a lot.

Joe Katz:
Yeah. Who could take that in? Yeah.

Jaime King:
But it was perfect, weirdly perfect in a strange way. Even with whatever challenges and a lot of the things that happened. Again, I always look to see how did I learn from that? How did I grow from that? How did that contribute to my life? And I look at the experiences and the people that I've worked with and met and have been in my life. And it's overwhelmingly powerful to be blessed to be with these human beings that think and create in a way that's just completely out of this world. And that was really my foundation, my education as an artist, and brought that into everything else that I did.

Joe Katz:
It reminds me, if I could have done that to get out of Iowa, I'd be like, yes, sign me up. But I would've been scared. I would have been scared but-

Jaime King:
Right. Oh, I was terrified. I was terrified but I didn't know what that terror was. I didn't know how to identify it.

Joe Katz:
But that seems so much better than being in school and people being mean, and it's like...

Jaime King:
That the thing. I was like. Okay. Either go back to that. And then what? I couldn't.

Joe Katz:
Right. When you were younger, did you feel beautiful?

Jaime King:
Not particularly, no.

Joe Katz:
You didn't?

Jaime King:
No. I thought my sister was beautiful. I always recognized the beauty in other people. There were times where I thought that I was pretty or times where I thought that I was beautiful. But again, when I was younger, I didn't necessarily identify with that because it felt like there was some kind of paradox that was happening between the not fitting in and the bullying. And then being expected

Jaime King:
... expected to be one way, like a cheerleader or a prom queen, or whatever, because of the way that I look. My exterior didn't somehow match up to my interior. That's why I wasn't ever really accepted because it was like, "Oh, you're pretty, or beautiful, or whatever, and so therefore you should match these expectations." But I wasn't those things. I didn't want to do any of those things. I just wanted to, again, read, write, make movies, make plays, make clothing. My interests were completely different, and I just didn't know how to reconcile that. It's like a Rubik's Cube. I remember always feeling like if I just twist and turn it enough, somehow it all makes sense, and it never did, not when I was younger. Now it does, but when you're a kid and you're going through it, as you know. I mean, what was your saving grace?

Joe Katz:
I think my saving grace was my family. My sister was my best friend. My sister was my best friend. She would go after the kids and be like, "Don't you talk to him!" She was the cool, bad-ass girl. She was a little bit chunky. She gained a little bit of weight, but everybody's like, "You're so cool." Because she'd wear red lipstick and oversized jeans and a ripped shirt. Everybody was like, "You're weird, but you're kind of cool."

Jaime King:
Because she owned it, right?

Joe Katz:
Yeah.

Jaime King:
It was her essence. She had that thing.

Joe Katz:
Right, and everybody loved her because they thought she was kind of oddly cool. She was like, "I'm not popular." But she wasn't the cheerleader or anything like that. So she was kind of like my saving grace to just talk to, in the way that I knew how to talk at that age.

Jaime King:
That's so great.

Joe Katz:
Yeah, but it's interesting. For you, I can imagine, going into modeling, didn't people tell you all the time, "Oh my god, you're so beautiful, Jaime. Oh, you're so beautiful."

Jaime King:
Yes, yes.

Joe Katz:
If they see you, they're like, "You're gorgeous."

Jaime King:
Yes. Yes. So it was very, in a way, alluring because you need that. It was like I needed to feel confident, and people in the fashion industry gave me that confidence. Because it was the, "Oh, you're so beautiful. You're so gorgeous. The way that you move." I felt like some part of me that wasn't filled, growing up, was filled through these people that saw me, and not just on a physical level. They saw something in me that was like, "Oh, she gets this thing. She gets me."

Jaime King:
It's also strange to go from not fitting into anything, to all of a sudden being wanted, or to be a part of something because the foundation was built as that I don't belong, fitting into something. As a teenager, I'd be like in a room or at a fancy dinner or backstage, and even though I was a part of it, I still felt like I was sort of inside of myself, like not.

Joe Katz:
You mean with the-

Jaime King:
Not with it. Even though I was with the group, I always felt a little bit outside of it, like I was observing it. So that part to me is interesting, to look at with anyone that grows up with radical shifts in their lives, what the foundation is versus the next experience and the next experience.

Joe Katz:
Yeah. Do you feel beautiful now?

Jaime King:
I do.

Joe Katz:
You do?

Jaime King:
I do.

Joe Katz:
That's cool.

Jaime King:
I do, yeah.

Joe Katz:
You look at yourself and you're like, "Yeah, I'm beautiful. I'm a model. I model. I'm a beautiful person. I'm beautiful on the outside and beautiful on the inside?"

Jaime King:
I don't look in the mirror and think, "I'm beautiful, I'm a model." When I see the beauty, my beauty that I recognize is how I experience myself internally. Who I am as a human being then radiates from me. Yes, on the physical, I believe that I'm very beautiful. On the inner, connecting to my inner, is what really ... It's all of that together that makes our beauty. Wisdom and age and experience and self-acceptance, the friendships and the relationships in our lives, it's our relationship with ourselves that allows us, I think, to experience truly what beautiful is.

Joe Katz:
Right. I can imagine being at that age and everybody's telling you one thing, and everybody's saying, and then not sure how to take that in at such a young age.

Jaime King:
Yes, yes.

Joe Katz:
That's intense. Are you close with your family now? Are you still close with-?

Jaime King:
I'm very close. Very close, yes.

Joe Katz:
Oh, that's cool. That's great.

Jaime King:
They're the best.

Joe Katz:
What do they think of all your success?

Jaime King:
I mean, it's sort of unfathomable. Again, we're from the Midwest.

Joe Katz:
We're just people.

Jaime King:
We're just people, you know? So to have a shoot to super-stardom, I couldn't even understand it. They couldn't understand. We're just like, "Oh, okay. We're just going to do this thing." Yeah, when it happens that quickly, it's hard to really process it.

Joe Katz:
Right. Wow. That's so interesting. There's so many things about models, growing up in it, too. Is it true about what you have to eat, or you have to watch what you eat, what we hear about all these things that models don't eat anything, and they're kind of unhealthy, and they're smoking, and they're doing drugs and all that stuff.

Jaime King:
There was a lot of that. Because, again, I was so young and I was naturally thin, I really ate whatever I wanted. Not to sound like ... But I was a kid, so I was able to eat McDonald's, and I didn't worry about my weight. There was a lot of smoking cigarettes. There was a lot of being introduced to drugs and things. That time in fashion was very wild. I didn't know what I should or shouldn't be doing. I just felt like if I didn't do what they were doing, somehow I'd get kicked out. So it's the same thing. It's like if you were in junior high or high school and people are like, "Oh, this is the thing to try or to do." I guess I just desperately wanted to be ... Again, it's adults. I didn't quite understand. I thought that maybe I'd be protected by them, so I just went with what they were doing because I didn't have that sort of guidance.

Jaime King:
In retrospect, I look back and there was a lot of things that people did to look a particular way. It wasn't until I was about 17, where my body started to change and I had an exercise. I would exercise and eat really healthy. I didn't starve myself. I just changed what I put into my body, and I changed my physical activity. I'm actually really thankful for that because I love running, and I love using my body as a vehicle, which it is, specifically as an actors as well. I think there's a lot of different ideas or stereotypes or stories about being a model or being in the fashion industry, and I think it really depends on what year and what decade and what generation.

Joe Katz:
Right.

Jaime King:
I think it's the awareness at the time.

Joe Katz:
Because you always hear models don't eat. I mean, I've met people over the years. There was another girl I actually interviewed on the show who's become very famous in Instagram and all of that stuff, and her agency dropped her because she gained 10 pounds. She didn't know what to do, and it all changes everything. They gave her a warning, like two months warning, and then eventually they dropped her because she put on 10 pounds. She goes, "I guess they have the right, because they gave me the warning, but it's just ..." Yeah, yeah.

Jaime King:
Yeah. I saw things like that, and it makes me sad that any women still have that kind of mentality now. One would hope that we're not ... It's just sickening to me.

Jaime King:
I remember things. I remember one very famous model who, I loved her ears, but they stuck out a little bit. That's what I loved about it because they were quirky and they were different. They made her like pin her ears back. In Hollywood they do that. I've seen many actresses that would have to starve themselves and do crazy things because the studios wanted that.

Jaime King:
I do remember one time where I did have that shift, and I remember my agent saying to me that I was starting to look thick. I was like, "Wait, what?" I didn't know what to do. I was like, "Really?" It does create a body dysmorphia.

Jaime King:
It's just like the kids now, with Instagram and filters and face-tuning. What that's doing to the brain development of children is crazy because they start to see themselves through filters. They're seeing, "What is the standard of beauty? Oh, I have to look like that." Then they're putting fillers and this and that, and they're actually changing their faces, while still developing at the same time. So they'll never know what it's like to grow into their beauty. It's a tricky thing. It's really tricky. I feel like the kids now are dealing with a much more difficult situation than when I was a child, and I thought that was hard.

Joe Katz:
Yeah. I remember seeing you. You were always known to be ... I think innately, you're thin. That's just who you are.

Jaime King:
Yeah.

Joe Katz:
You're just thin. I mean, everybody's built differently, but you're normally just more thin. I remember they always said, "she was that heroin chic thinness," like super waify. Didn't they say, or no?

Jaime King:
Well, yeah. The term like heroin chic is so disturbing to me.

Joe Katz:
It's weird, isn't it?

Jaime King:
It's like they took the grunge movement, and that time and the nineties, and what fashion designers were creating and making, the swag or the energy of it. Kate Moss actually really paved the way for me to even be able to be a supermodel at all, because you had to be five-ten, like a minimum of five-ten.

Joe Katz:
Oh right, what are you?

Jaime King:
I'm five foot eight and a half.

Joe Katz:
Oh, so, yeah.

Jaime King:
I was like, "Oh, I'm never going to be a Cindy Crawford or a Claudia Schiffer, or an Evangelista or a Naomi." I just thought, "If I could only grow taller." I knew that you had to be a certain height to be a supermodel. When Kate Moss and Jaime Rishar, these women came in, and were thinner and waif-ier, then it actually gave me the opportunity to do that. Kate's, what, five-seven, I think? Something like that. It's kind of crazy that we have to think about something in inches and heights.

Joe Katz:
I know, and hips.

Jaime King:
Again, it goes back to this standard, right?

Joe Katz:
Right, right. It's crazy to think all that stuff.

Jaime King:
It's crazy.

Joe Katz:
If you were to look back at your young self, what would you tell her now, that girl in New York at 14?

Jaime King:
I would say that you did good, kid. You did good. I really, as a kid, did the best that I could with what I knew, with what I had. To be gentle with ourselves and who we were as kids, and extend that gentleness to ourselves, I think is really important.

Joe Katz:
Yeah. Yeah. Wow. Any advice you would give her?

Jaime King:
It's so interesting, when you say any advice you would give her, I always think about what would I give to other people, other people that are young.

Joe Katz:
Yeah, like even other people that are young. I mean, I sometimes look at myself-

Jaime King:
It's interesting thinking about that. Go ahead.

Joe Katz:
No, because if I think about giving myself advice, at that super young age, I feel like you do the best you can, you know?

Jaime King:
Yeah.

Joe Katz:
Yeah, I don't know. I always find it interesting.

Jaime King:
What would you tell yourself at that age?

Joe Katz:
That it's okay to be different. It's okay. It's so weird, Jaime, because now I also feel like back then everybody goes, "You're so weird. You're so different. You're wearing boat shoes and plaid pants and all this stuff. You don't wear t-shirts and jeans, and you look like a girl, and you're all this stuff." Then when you get older and you start doing stuff, people are like, "Oh my God, we celebrate you. You're amazing."

Jaime King:
Yes!

Joe Katz:
It's like that switch, it's not so easy, to just go from-

Jaime King:
No.

Joe Katz:
You know what I mean?

Jaime King:
That's exactly what we're talking about. I know exactly what you mean because, exactly what you just said, it's like, wow, the thing that I was bullied for, the thing that made me such an outcast, so different, so weird, it became the thing that I was celebrated for. It became the thing. I became a fashion icon. The things that people seemingly hated about me, that kept me away from people, becomes what people adore. Again, that switch is really hard.

Joe Katz:
Right. It's really difficult to be able to go, "Wait, I can't switch it that quick."

Jaime King:
Yes.

Joe Katz:
I mean, you do. You do, and it's fun, but some of that thinking you have to change in your mind, in your brain.

Jaime King:
A hundred percent. It's the inner dialogue. We can't shift that quickly because it's our messaging. It's the messaging that we've gotten from the world, and when that all of a sudden shifts, then we have to change it inside of ourselves, and in relationship to the world. It takes a lot of work to do that.

Joe Katz:
Right, to change that a lot. Yeah. I don't know. I mean, are you comfortable with just saying ... I read about just some of the things you went through at 16, with some of the stuff. Was it difficult getting involved with some of those people, and then some of the stuff, like the drug stuff and all of that, and to get away from it? How do you get away from it, and how do you still stay? I don't know. For me, I always remember being so scared.

Jaime King:
Yes.

Joe Katz:
I was so scared of everything. I'm like, "Oh my God, I'm going to lose control if I try anything, if I try pot." I was like a baby about all that stuff. I can't imagine. But also it helps you lose maybe some of your inhibitions and stuff like that.

Jaime King:
Yeah, I was scared. I didn't even know what I was doing half the time. It was like I'd be on a shoot, and they would say, "Oh, do you want to try dope?" I thought dope was pot, and dope was heroin.

Joe Katz:
So you just said yes?

Jaime King:
It's like when you're the only person, and you're a kid, and the photographer, the editor, when everyone's like ... You're just like, "Uh." I didn't know what I was supposed to do or not do.

Joe Katz:
Oh, right.

Jaime King:
Do you understand? I didn't know. It's not like you had someone taking you out of the room. It was a series of many things like that, that happened. Of course I was scared. I didn't know. By the time I was 17, I've never taken anything since. It was one of those, I knew that that life was not ... That was not who I was, and I didn't want to live my life like that. I had learned everything that I could learn from the fashion history. I'd worked with all of the greats.

Jaime King:
Frankly, what got me out of it was my own inner compass, of wanting to learn and grow and expand. I was like, "Okay, I've learned everything that I can from this industry." It just wasn't enough for me, you know? It didn't satiate my heart and my soul, to continue in fashion. People thought, they're like, "Wait, you're going to go do what? You're going to be an actor now?" Because at that time there were no multi-hyphenates. You just go from being a supermodel and then be a serious actor. It just didn't work like that.

Joe Katz:
Right, right.

Jaime King:
So they're like, "What are you doing? You're making us all this money, and you're making all this money. Why would you stop now? You have your whole career ahead of you." Inside of me, it was like, "No, no, no, no. I've learned everything. I'm so grateful for that. This is not what I want to be a part of." I just had bigger dreams, other dreams, and things that I needed to do. I'm just really thankful that there's that thing inside of me that ... It's our soul that guides us, our higher self that guides us. Yeah, I didn't want to be a part of it anymore. I wanted to can contribute and experience. I just really wanted to be a filmmaker.

Joe Katz:
What age did you switch over to acting?

Jaime King:
Around 17.

Joe Katz:
Oh, that young?

Jaime King:
Yeah, 18. Yeah. Actually, I did my first film when I was 18.

Joe Katz:
So then you gave up the modeling. You didn't do it.

Jaime King:
Yes, and I was very, very strict about that. I somehow knew inside of myself, and I said, "I will not do anything in the fashion industry anymore, once I get into the film industry." Because there was no guide at that time, in terms of how do you switch from one thing to another, but I just somehow knew inside of me that I couldn't do both. I had to really commit to being an actor, and the greatest actor, and training, and all of the studying, and all the hard work that you need to do, to do that, so that I could be seen as serious, in terms of Hollywood. So I didn't do any magazines, any campaigns, nothing, unless it was specifically to promote a film.

Joe Katz:
Oh, so after 18, no more Vogue, no more Harper's, nothing.

Jaime King:
Only for press for a film. That was it.

Joe Katz:
So if something came like Clairol or L'Oreal and they wanted you as the main girl, you wouldn't do it.

Jaime King:
I wouldn't do it. I wouldn't do it. The first thing that I did was Revlon with Peter Lindbergh, and I did it because it was an all actor campaign. It was myself, Julianne Moore, Halle Berry, Eva Mendez. That was the first time that I agreed to do a campaign for a company.

Joe Katz:
A brand.

Jaime King:
A brand.

Joe Katz:
Wow. Jaime, I could talk to you all day, all day, all day, but I want to talk to you-

Jaime King:
I love you.

Joe Katz:
I want to talk to you about your film career and everything, but we're going to wrap up today. We're going to come back another time, and we're going to talk all about your film career and your TV career, because it's amazing, how you transitioned and where you went. I want to encourage everybody to tune back in because we're going to talk all about Jaime's TV and film and fabulous career after she quit modeling and went into full-time acting. All right, thanks, Jaime.

Jaime King:
Thank you so much. This was so fun. I appreciate you.

Joe Katz:
Thank you. See you!

Jaime King:
Bye!

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