I was stood up by my prom date
Not that we want to tell you what to think. Far from it. Feel free to make up your own minds. However, we would strongly suggest you take away two lasting impressions following our conversation with Hope Dworaczyk (pronounced, incidentally, Der-ah-sic). One: Hope is breathtakingly attractive. Two: she’s as down to earth as they come. A good, honest, old-fashioned, mom’s-apple-pie sort of girl.
We suspect this is because she grew up on a farm in Texas. And when you grow up in an environment where you are expected to feed chickens, muck out stables and mend fences, it’s hard to get ideas above your station. And despite those earth-shakingly wonderful looks (did we mention them already?) Hope didn’t grow up believing herself to be attractive. No, really.
“I never felt beautiful; honestly I was a dweeb growing up,” she insists over the phone from her home in LA. “I know all models say that, but I was super skinny, I had frizzy curly hair, I was 5’10 by the time I was thirteen, I got glasses and boobs in fourth grade, so I was wearing a training bra and two T-shirts to hide them. I was just so awkward.”
How bad can it be for a skinny girl with big boobs? Pretty bad, it turns out.
“I was stood up by my prom date. I got my dress and everything and then found out he was taking somebody else.”
But it can only be bad for so long. Hope says she “just happened” to enter Miss Teen Texas, thanks to a beloved grandmother who encouraged her to dress nicely and make the most of her blossoming features. She won (quell surprise). Prior to this, she says, her only experience of modelling was alone in the confines of her bedroom. “When I was young I’d sleep in my dad’s T-shirt. I would stand in front of the mirror and pull it tight and pose. I guess every girl does it, I don’t know if that’s normal or not… I would create angles with my legs and hips, so in a way I always wanted to be a model, but living in a small town it’s very hard to believe that it could happen.”
Still, the victory was a defining moment in Hope’s life. The eighteen-year-old girl-from-Texas was subsequently snapped up by a modelling agency and shipped off to New York. “I just absorbed it all and I didn’t tell anybody it was my first time in the city; I kind of just bit my tongue and played the part.”
Hope obviously did a good job pretending to be city-savvy, because her career blossomed: she has since done runway work, toured for labels such as Versace, hosted Inside Fashion in Canada and appeared as a contestant on Celebrity Apprentice (Donald Trump, she can exclusively reveal, uses lots of hairspray). She wants to move into producing and says she is working on two TV projects at the moment. “One is called Hope in a Smile and it’s like Extreme Home Makeover, but we’re not just making people over cosmetically; we’re featuring people that need life coaches and people that have been in rehab or on drugs. When you are on drugs you often lose your teeth and it’s hard to get a job, so we are doing makeovers from the inside out. The second show I can’t really talk about yet, but it’s based on my alter ego and I make fun of models and people in my industry.”
Most recently she has been thinking about acting, after being called in for a role in G.I. Joe 2. She didn’t get the part, but it’s got her thinking that it is something she might be cut out for. Particularly as she was asked to audition. (“My manager said to me, ‘I wanna know what you did in that room, I want to know how this happened!”). And when we speak she’s waiting on a call for a role for which she auditioned four times in R.I.P.D. an upcoming action-comedy crime film, starring Jeff Bridges (“I can’t sleep at night, it’s down to two people and I could get a call anytime now!”) As it turns out, she won’t get that role either, but just to get to that level with no prior experience tells you that she might be onto something good.
Undoubtedly those looks help, a fact to which anyone who has seen her Playboy body-paint shoot will attest. Not that she stripped without thinking through how she’d feel about it later. “My grandmother was the one who, when I approached her, said, ‘If I was your age and had the opportunity to do this I would go for it.’ When somebody says that and they are much older, which means they’re much wiser, to me it’s a no brainer. I said, Fine okay I’m going to do it.”
And it worked out great. Hope became the 2010 Playmate Of The Year, and moved to LA to further her thriving modelling and TV career and possible break into films. Life is good for Hope Dworaczyk and if you believe in karma, she deserves the good things coming to her. Twice in our conversation the phone goes dead and she is the first to ring back, apologising for the inconvenience. She is polite, attentive and a good listener. At the end of our hour-long conversation she thanks us for our time. Nothing about Hope suggests a girl who has lost sight of the fact that fame and good looks are fleeting.
“I never wanted to just be a pretty face,” she says at one point. “That would be the most boring thing for me… somebody that doesn’t have a passion or doesn’t want to give back. That’s one of the reasons I did Celebrity Apprentice, because of the whole charity factor. I want to always have something to say, I want to always have an opinion about something and be a good person.”
She says that every time she goes home to Texas she hankers for the simplicity and warmth of life there. One day she’d like to live by the water on a farm and have horses. Her husband will be a man who makes her laugh, is nice to waiters and doormen (“You can tell a lot about a person’s character by the way they speak to other people”) and doesn’t ever answer his cell phone on dates.
It’s a picture-perfect dream in a life that already has its share of good fortune. Just spare a thought for the guy who thought it was a good idea to stand her up at the high-school Prom. “I do know who he is; he’s still in Texas,” she answers when I ask of his whereabouts. “They can look up my sister on Facebook and then find my personal page, and it’s so funny to see the requests that I get now compared with back then.”
As to whether she accepted his friend request… well, what do you think?