SPOILER ALERT! If you do not want to know who was kicked off Project Runway last night, never to be seen in the Parsons auditorium again, then keep on surfin’. Nothing to see here.
Image Credit: Lifetime TelevisionAs he himself said last night, “You don’t have to have the crown to be the queen.” But that doesn’t mean we’re still not broken up over the auf’ing off Anthony Williams. We spoke with the exuberant, irrepressible contestant, who promises us “the best is yet to come.”
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Anthony, I can’t believe you’re gone. I was so sad, but you seemed your usual buoyant self last night. Was that an editing trick or were you really okay with getting the ax?
ANTHONY WILLIAMS: Honestly, I was tired. I was tired and I felt like I had run the race and fought a good fight, and I was just like, You know what? It’s okay. I was never treated like a loser, I never thought of myself as a loser. I never felt like I was immune to the Project Runway experience. And the Project Runway experience includes possibly being eliminated.
How do you remain so positive?
You know, I was sitting in the barbershop last week, getting my hair cut, and I closed my eyes for a second. I think I was getting my eyebrows done or something. When I closed my eyes, I thought back to just a few months prior, when I couldn’t even afford to get a $25 haircut. And I thought to myself how quickly we forget. I think that that’s the thing that I don’t do. I don’t forget the bad times. I don’t forget the times when I used to see roaches on the floor or rats, when I applied to the University of Alabama and they said no, when I’ve been in class [in school as a kid] and people would do so many horrible things to me and the teachers didn’t know how to stop it, so I would just have to endure and be strong. And after going through all of that, do you really think [Michael Kors], Nina Garcia, and a model with a microphone in her ear are gonna determine whether I’m gonna have a good day? No! It’s just not gonna happen.
What did you think of the judges’ decision to send you home? Was it just your time?
I guess it was my time to go. I never questioned if it was the right decision. I knew when they were going in on Jonathan [on the runway], that I was going home. The person they go in the hardest on is more than likely the person who’s not going home. It makes for good television. They asked me the question: “Do you only make cocktail dresses?” Honey, making cocktail dresses got me from the projects to Project Runway, so you know what? I’m gonna keep on makin’ ‘em. It’s the truth. That was [Heidi’s] opinion. Or it was the opinion of the producers that were in her ear. Who knows?
You’re saying somebody was feeding Heidi lines through an earpiece?
I mean, I don’t know. She has a little thing in her ear, that’s a known fact. Somebody’s talking to her. It ain’t God. And it damn sure wasn’t my mama ’cause she would have told her, “Don’t mess with my son! And leave him on that show!” [Laughs] [Lifetime confirms that Heidi Klum wears a microphone in her ear, but only so the producers can give her stage directions.]
You seemed to struggle with this challenge from the beginning. What happened?
Well, to be perfectly honest with you, Vivienne Tam was such a major distraction to me because she looked so much like Michael Jackson.
Seriously, she really looked like Michael Jackson to me. But I struggled with textile design in college, so I already came in [to this challenge] with a little apprehension. A lot of times, how you start is how you finish. I started out the challenge shaky and I finished shaky. Honey, you win some, you lose some. I lost that one. On to the next one. [Laughs]
What were you saying last night about Beyoncé being the source of all your problems?
[Laughs] The thing I think I was talking about was, Beyoncé’s music is so empowering that you end up listening to it and believing your ass can take over the world. And that’s how I ended up on Project Runway, thinkin’ I could just take over the world.
Ah, so the fact that you were standing there, struggling over a jacket was Beyoncé’s fault.
Yes. That is her fault because she made me believe that I could do it. Her, Barack, and Oprah. All of them. And I have done it. I don’t say this with any arrogance, but I don’t think I lost Project Runway, I think Project Runway lost me. I think I was a major asset to the show. I think what I did was introduce a different personality than they’ve ever seen. And I’ve shown that you can come from somewhere like Birmingham, Alabama and [succeed on the show].
You mentioned your mom. She must be very proud of you.
My mother is very proud of me. One thing my mother taught me is how to remain lovely. I’ve seen my mother go through the worst. They have taken her kidneys, she’s gone through heart surgery, you name it. And she never stopped being a lady. And I’m never gonna stop being a gentleman. On Project Runway, I wasn’t gonna be rude or bash the other contestants. I remember Jesse saying he thought I should have gone home. I don’t know who should have gone home [last night]. I hated Mila’s dress. I thought that was the biggest bullsh… [Laughs]
Mila’s tee-pee dress?
Oh my god. I think it looked like a display for Crayola colors.
I wasn’t such a fan of Emilio’s graffiti monogram.
I thought that the judges would say, “This is a copy of Louis Vuitton and so many others.” It was a complete copy. But they bought it. They bought it, they loved it, and I thought to myself, Well honey, if that’s what they buy, let me pack up my petals and head back to the guards. [Laughs]
So what’s next for you?
I’m working on speaking with investors right now because I want to do a trunk show at a luxury retailer who we will leave nameless. I’m working with Miss Alabama University for the Miss Alabama pageant. I am so good about this whole experience. I didn’t need to win Project Runway. Some people needed to win to validate who they are as designers and to validate their egos. I didn’t. All I needed to do was show up and show out. And I did that.
Well, you will be missed. Even Heidi said so just as she was giving you her auf Wiedersehen.
I didn’t [remember that]. I guess wasn’t paying enough damn attention at that point. I remember I said, “If this was Dreamgirls, I’d be singing, ‘And I am telling you…’! I guess they edited it out. [Laughs]