"America's Next Top Model" is undergoing a serious makeover. Tyra Banks has announced that the three staples of the show: J. Alexander, Nigel Barker, and Jay Manuel will not be returning for another season.
Jay Manuel currently serves as a mentor for the contestants while they are on photo shoots; he coaches and advises them throughout the entire season and has even served as a judge for special episodes. He initially started on "ANTM" as a make-up artist but has held the mentor position for several seasons.
J. Alexander is the show's "Runway Diva Extraordinaire" and judge. He was a model for several years before working as a runway coach for models, including Tyra Banks. He is known for his outlandish accessories and clothing, which change as the contestants are sent home.
Nigel Barker is not only an internationally known photographer, he is the second permanent judge for "ANTM." Barker often shoots pictures of the contestants at one point during the season. He is married, and his wife Cristen Chin is also a model. They have two children together.
The show, which is in its 18th season, has been a mainstay for aspiring models everywhere. The various cycles have helped young women on their journey into modeling. "ANTM" has worked with Cover Girl, "Seventeen" magazine and taken contestants across the globe.
"Fierce & love 2 my Nigel Barker, Mr. Jay Manuel & Miss J. ANTM turned us in2 a family. Excited for what the future holds for us. XOXO TyTy," Tyra Banks tweeted.
Executive producer Ken Mok issued a statement saying that the three men "have been an integral part of the 'America's Next Top Model' brand and they helped turn this show into the household name it is today."
Alexander and Manuel have not spoken publicly about their release, but Barker wrote on his blog, "I will miss the cast, the crew and 'ANTM' will always have a special place in my heart, having made life-long friendships with countless fond memories."