Tyra was born in Los Angeles on December 4th, 1973. She was turned down by four modeling agencies because they thought her face wasn't photogenic, but finally she signed by the Elite agency when she was 17.
So, instead of going to College, Tyra moved to Paris for a year and modeled for many of the big names in fashion, including Ralph Lauren and Chanel. She then moved back to the States and continued modeling, rocketing her way up through the ranks.
Soon Tyra began to diversify her activities, having a small part in the British television movie, Inferno as a supermodel, and then appearing on Will Smith's Fresh Prince of Bel-Air in a recurring supporting role.
Tyra's first real movie role came in John Singleton's Higher Learning. She played Omar Epps' track-running girlfriend and though it was a small role, critics were impressed by the intensity she brought to the screen.
Now an important part in Coyote Ugly has brought Tyra back into the limelight. She plays a wild bartender, which is quite ironic because she has said several times that she doesn't drink alcohol.
The future looks bright for Tyra Banks. She stars in two upcoming movies, one of which -- Disney's Honey Thunder Dunk -- she will also be producing, she is one of the richest supermodels in the world, with a personal wealth recently valued at 8.8 million dollars, and there were even rumors a few months ago that Oprah Winfrey is grooming her to take over her show.