Reality TV Gets in the Swim
January 3, 2005

Sports Illustrated's Swimsuit Issue has long been the most coveted cover and magazine layout of any year and now the heat is coming to reality TV with "SI: Swimsuit Model Search," in which you'll have a beachside seat of all the sexy action as 12 scorching-hot contestants get in the swim as they vie for a layout in the 2005 Swimsuit issue.

After country-scouring, coast-to-coast casting calls for fresh-faced unknowns, "Extra" met the 12 va-va-va-voom bikini-clad finalists chosen to compete for the magazine spot and a million dollar modeling contract.

"It's a dream to be here," a contestant told us, while another admitted she was overwhelmed by the opportunity: "I didn't think I'd make it this far."

A third weighed in with her opinion of her competition, saying, "I was absolutely amazed when I saw everybody. Everybody is gorgeous."

"I was just like, 'Is this really happening to me?'" one bathing beauty confessed. "'Am I really doing this? This is Sports Illustrated. It's crazy!"

And these girls are all here to win. "Coming into this reality show, you have to be confident," one told us, while another confirmed, "I just know I have what it takes."

We spoke with one of the judges, former Sports Illustrated model Roshama Williams, who told us, "The most important thing for the girls to realize is they made it this far in the competition -- even to be living here in the Sports Illustrated mansion -- if you win or you don't win, you're among the cream of the crop."

And you can get in the swim when the six episode, "Sports Illustrated: Swimsuit Model Search" heats up the winter chill when it debuts on NBC Wednesday night.

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