Two individuals are seeking to make plus-size models hot commodities in the entertainment industry.
Florida A&M alumna Sandy JeanPhilippe, along with her best friend Patricia Eugene, founded One Chance Entertainment, a company aimed at changing how plus-size women are viewed.
The company specializes in developing opportunities for its clients, in the modeling, fashion, television, film and music industries. One Chance is based in Miami, the home of Eugene and JeanPhilipe, and serves Orlando, Tallahassee, California, Nevada and Arizona.
“I want to do what I want to do; I can’t wait for them to give me a chance,” JeanPhilippe said.
In pursuit of her career JeanPhilippe moved to Los Angeles just three months after receiving her master’s degree from FAMU in 2006.
During her search for a job as a model/actress, she realized that minorities were underrepresented in the entertainment industry. JeanPhilippe said she decided to do something about it.
“We wanted to a create platform for artists, for those who wouldn’t have that opportunity,” she said.
One Chance came to life in August 2007. JeanPhilippe and Eugene held their first plus-size model fashion show Jan. 26 in Miami.
“We want to bring more plus-size models into sight,” Eugene said.
Still in its early stages, One Chance depends heavily on volunteers. Dawn Burke-Alexander, 27, a Samford University alumna, is the representative for the Tallahassee area.
“I know it’s going to be successful and I thought it was a good idea,” Burke-Alexander said. “I’m happy to be a part of the company.”
JeanPhilippe said One Chance was created with the purpose of producing “opportunities for others to change their lives.”
In April, One Chance makes its Tallahassee debut, hosting a plus-size women models fashion showcase. JeanPhilippe said Tallahassee was the place that inspired her.
“FAMU was the best thing to ever happen to me – the good, the bad and the ugly,” she said.
The entrepreneurs are currently planning a pageant during the summer and are preparing for their first talent showcase.
JeanPhilippe said running One Chance takes a lot of work.
“We’re on-point, focused women,” she said.
Eugene agreed that running One Chance is a lot of work, but they are willing to help anyone who’s interested in their company.
“If you believe in yourself then we’ll stand behind you,” Eugene said. “It takes a lot to make it in this industry.”
Both women have jobs that require at least 40 hours a week, but they maintain their company at the same time.
JeanPhilippe also manages her own career.
“My time will come; I wanted to create opportunities for others to change their lives,” JeanPhilippe said. “We’re blessed to have flexibility and communication. We (she and Eugene) talk every day.”
Eugene said One Chance is instrumental in making dreams a tangible reality.
What started out as a joke between friends while watching television is growing into a respectable company with “One Goal, One Dream, One Chance.”
For more information about One Chance Entertainment visit http://www.onechanceentertainment.com or http://www.myspace.com/1chanceproducitons.