Q&A: Tyson Beckford reveals himself in ‘Chippendales’ role
Back in 1997, People magazine named Tyson Beckford the sexiest model alive. Eighteen years later, he doesn’t look like he’s aged a minute. Fresh off his new film, Chocolate City (opens May 22), Beckford promises to almost bare it all when he guest hosts Chippendales: The Show at the Rio through May 24. He talks to Las Vegas Magazine’s Susan Stapleton about some of the moves he learned in Chocolate City and what he hopes to include in the show.
What made you decide to guest host Chippendales?
It helps promote my new show coming out, Chocolate City, where I play a male stripper. It also kills the stigma of male revues being raunchy and distasteful. It’s not bad. It’s really like you’re bringing happiness to a room full of women and men. I came to see it and I was just like, I felt like I was on the set ofChocolate City again. Imagine if Chocolate City and Magic Mike all got together and did one movie where one strip club battles the other strip club. It would be amazing. This is the summer of male strippers. You’ve got Chocolate City (opening out May 22) and (Magic Mike) coming out Fourth of July weekend. It’s going to be very educating for the women. The men, of course, better get themselves in the gym because they’ve got a lot to compete against. A lot of times when the girls get done watching the show, they’ll come back to the Flirt Lounge and do a meet-and-greet. They shoot out of here so quickly. They’re going home or they’re going to go meet that guy or look for that guy.
I feel like, more than any other guest host with Chippendales, that you have some bonafide experience that you can bring to the show between your modeling career, your role in Zoolander and now Chocolate City coming out.
I’ve been a sex symbol and half naked in the magazines for the past 22 years. Now coming off the Addicted movie where I had sex scenes in that and with Chocolate City coming out, I think I have a lot more experience than the guy from 90210. He was the last one. I was on the top of the list to host the show for years.
There’s a guy for every girl up there.
There is. That’s what’s so out of this world. There’s somebody up there that they all have someone to love. I think it’s such a diverse show where there’s Latin guys, there’s black guys, there’s white guys; it’s exactly what I told you about with Magic Mike and Chocolate City coming together. The magic is going to happen. Even when the guy was going through the names at the closing, each guy got scream after scream. It was so much on the same level. I’m sitting back and I can see she likes him, and she likes him. I saw some girls out there where I was like, “Whoa, if I was single. I’d like to talk to you.” I met some girls from Dublin, from Australia, from England. Whenever you can put women in a good mood, you’re doing a world of justice.
You’re used to showing a bit more than previous guest hosts. Can we expect to see a little more skin from you in the show?
In Chocolate City, I’m a little nude in there. Being a male model, being nude is nothing new for me, so to me, if I’m in the mood and the music is right and energetic? Sure. The guys go down to that and just cover up. I’ll do that. Obviously, I’ll do that in the first one because my girlfriend is going to be there. I gotta let her understand what she’s going to see later. She’s been begging to see me dance since I was filming Chocolate City. She wasn’t able to be on the set.
What moves did you learn in Chocolate City that you will incorporate in the show?
Oh, yeah. I got a bag full. I saw some of the guys trying my moves. And there’s some things I learned from watching them.
Do you know how much you’ll be doing in the show?
I’ll definitely jump in, because Ian (Zeiring) jumped in places where they didn’t expect him to be. They’ve given me that freedom. If there’s a number I want to do on a particular night, I’ll probably do it if I’m in the mood and the guys don’t mind it. But what I tell them is that I don’t want to take anyone out of a spot. If you can add a spot for me, great. But I don’t want to take any of these veterans out of their spot.
Will you be doing your own version of a walk-off in the fashion segment of Chippendales?
Yeah, I’ve got to be in that one. Everything’s getting redone. There’s going to be a new stage, a new backdrop and they’re bringing in this massive LED screen that’s better than what they have out there now. They’re doing an upgrade. For the fashion segment, we’re really going to amp that one up. There’s a scene in Chocolate City where we’re in tuxedos with no shirts on underneath that’s kind of a little “Smooth Criminal” mixed with Broadway. We’ve got some moves.