home Fashion-Modeling, Interviews Q&A with Michael Flutie, Beri Smither, and Dani Stahl of Scouted on E!

Q&A with Michael Flutie, Beri Smither, and Dani Stahl of Scouted on E!

Scouted premiered on the E! Network on November 28 and brings together the most talented fashion icons in history as they search for potential models. Some may call the show a bit harsh, but in an industry that is so highly regarded, it is only fitting that Scouted is a reality series with the fashion world’s biggest players.
The show does not just discover models, but shows how they are developed and their road to stardom is captured. It may be heartbreaking, funny, compelling or inspiring but that is Scouted at its best. Local model scouts are sent out to just about everywhere from Houston, Salt Lake City, Richmond and San Francisco, and find themselves at country fairs, restaurants, high schools, beaches, sorority houses, and even a rodeo.

It is not just the future models that make Scouted, but the international and renowned fashion industry icons that help make all of this happen. A legend with over twenty-five years of Model agency experience, Michael Flutie serves as Creative Director. Legendary model Beri Smither serves as the Model Mentor, trendsetter and fashion expert Dani Stahl serves as the Image and Style Consultant,, and top industry casting director Julia Samersova is the Director of Scouting. Together they are a runway force to be reckoned with, creating, developing and nurturing the future careers of these fashionistas. Will the show discover the next Cindy Crawford, Noami Campbell, Milla Jovovich, Stephanie Seymour or Heidi Klum or will these girls crack under the Prada pressure?

This highly esteemed team took the time to discuss what makes a model and how you could be Scouted. Here is what Michael Flutie, Beri Smither and Dani Stahl had to say whenn contacted for an interview.

Janel: No holds barred, what does it take to be a model and make it on SCOUTED?

Michael: In Scouted, we are looking for beautiful girls with strong, modern features and very interesting personal stories.  We focus on their individual journeys starting with how and where they got scouted.  We also concentrate on the willingness of them and their families to share their stories with our audience and actually listen to and adapt to our direction at The Scouting Company.

Beri: 1) Look like a model!

2) Truly be 5’9″ or taller. Size 2 – 8.

3) Be beautiful on the inside and out equally!

Janel:  There are so many legends in the Fashion industry, what does it take to have a long, vital career in the industry?

Michael: First and most importantly, a model must have a well-managed career. She must have a manager who believes in her and who will champion her career, regardless of any obstacles or challenges she might face.  A model must be willing to work hard to achieve her goals. Beauty is subjective, and a model and her agent have to convince people to “believe” in that model’s look.

Beri: 1) Classic looks

2) Good relationships in the industry

3) Professionalism

4) Great management

Janel:  Is it more difficult working in New York or Los Angeles?

Michael: New York is the most competitive market place in the world. It is the hub of the fashion industry. Paris is equivalent to that level of competition as both cities are editorial advertising centers of the world. Los Angeles is more commercial in nature and more focused on television and film.

Beri: New York is more of a fashion capital then LA, so the two cities don’t really compare in the realm of fashion modeling.

Dani: New York vs. LA: If you want to be a high fashion model it’s all about New York. Obviously there’s a lot of work to do in LA, but NYC is the hub of fashion. It’s where it all really happens.

Janel: The industry constantly changes and old trends come back and new trends fade and then come back again. Is there a constant trend you will teach the future models about and why, despite the fabulousness of the fashion industry, it is frowned upon at times?

Michael:  I don’t think that people outside of our industry understand how complex the fashion and advertising fields are. You are dealing with so many creative individuals, all of whom have an opinion. Designers, Creative Directors, Photographers, Stylists, Hair and Makeup Artists and ultimately the CMOs (Chief Marketing Officers) of brands (Advertising) and or the editors of Magazines (editorial) all have a say in the development and evolution of trends.

Fashion is constantly changing and adapting to the global consumer; therefore every season, fashion houses bring on a new idea and a new thought inspired by the changes in pop culture, fabric designers and manufacturers, retailer’s needs and consumers and new technology. Designers are often referencing the past (film, music, television, current events) and creating new trends for the future. I am not teaching models about constant trends; I am assuring that they are educated and able to reference the historical evolution of the fashion industry, great works of art and literature. It is imperative models have the tools to think forward and create images that will be referenced in the future.

Beri: The constant trend is a “good attitude.”

Dani: My fashion mantra is “Fashion is Fun,” so I’m always up for trying something new and switching it up. I used to obsess about “defining” my style – now I just go with the mood of the day!

Janel: All of you were able to see these girls living their normal lives; did their ambition play a part in why they were chosen?

Michael: Every scout, model, mother, father and friend had to be open and willing to let us experience their specific journeys. A model’s ambition, or lack thereof, is truly representative of the potential triumphs or defeats that a model can have.

Beri: Of course, their ambition played a part.  It was apparent that some girls wanted this more than others.  Those with more drive to become a part of the business, who listened to what we had to say and took our criticisms as learning tools rather than insults, proved more successful in the long run.  A huge part of being a successful model is the ambition and passion for modeling – no one wants to work with someone ambivalent.  It’s not as effective in photos or videos.

Dani: It is great to learn the girls’ stories and have that insight into their lives, and it’s our jobs at The Scouting Office to do our best to make their dreams come true. But at the end of the day the girl either has what it takes to be a model or not.

Janel:  Is there something you would like everyone to know about each one of you that no one knows?

Michael: One of the things that people don’t know is that although girls are scouted and signed (which is a survival of the fittest process) ultimately, only a small percentage of them actually succeed in the most competitive markets in the world and become stars. (85% of girls who get signed don’t make it and end up back home pursuing other careers).

Dani: Something about me – well it’s no secret, but I’m petrified of elevators.



My name is Janel, I have been writing and published for many years. I wrote two poetry books. I was the Associate Editor of my college newspaper. I hope to write my life story one day and finish it.