The first season of Project Zoolander premiered on June 30, 2011. Joanna Flores was the host and judge along with Gigi Jonsdottir, TaQuila Heard, and Janie Wu plus photographer and photographer Hai Giang.
This season all the contestants had characters that they had to portray. These characters were meant as mock archtypes that one would normally see on a reality modeling show. None of the characters were actually real. Season one's drama and contestants were fictionalized for the most part. Only the eliminations and photo shotos were real. The producers decided to change this aspect starting in season where all the drama was real and contestants were told to drop the "act".
The characters were:
|Alex||The Experienced Girl|
|Caitlyn||The Fake Girl|
|Leslie||The Single Teenage Mom|
|Victoria||The Jesus Freak|
9 Contestants move into the house. They are greeted by host Joanna Flores and are introduced to the prizes. Immediatly, the girls are thrown into their first photo shoot shot by photographer Hai Giang. After the shoot, personalities start to clash right away. "Single teen mom" Leslie and "Jesus Freak" Victoria have a heated discussion about Religion. Caitlyn immediatly starts attacking Victoria's faith and the two contestants get into a strong verbal match. Victoria explains that she's just listening and doing what Jesus wants her to do. Alex explains that she's not in the competition to make friends, she's only there to win. At elimination, Alex, Hannah, Nicole, and Ada are all praised for their pictures while Victoria and Caitlyn are harshly critiqued for theirs. In the end, Victoria becomes the first girl eliminated from the competition.
- First Call-Out: Alexandria
- Bottom Two: Caitlyn and Victoria
- Eliminated: Victoria
The 8 remaining girls have a photo shoot with Janie Wu in a lucious field of stalk grass. The competition really starts to take it's pressure on some girls. Ada, Alex, and Caitlyn start to form a clique. Hannah expresses her concerns about her performance durign the photo shoot.
Jessica expresses how much she really has invested into the competition (clips from her chopping off her hair for the competition). She informs viewers that she will be forced to marry her cousin if she loses the competition.
At elimination, Alex is critiqued for not living up to her previous photo. Hannah and Jessica are also harshly criticized for their less than flattering pictures. Nicole is highly praised for her picture.
In the end, Alex is spared as both Jessica and Hannah are sent home.
- First Call-Out: Nicole
- Bottom Three: Alex, Jessica, and Hannah
- Eliminated: Jessica and Hannah
The 6 remaining girls are lined up and assigned partners for their next photo shoot.
|Huyen vs. Caitlyn||Battle of the Fiercness|
|Nicole vs. Ada||Battle of the Alpha Dogs|
|Alex vs. Leslie||Battle of the Ethnics|
The girls all worked well together despite some ongoign tensions between Huyen and Caitlyn.
After the shoot, the girls are thrown into their first and only challenge of the season. A runway challenge.
Ada, Caitlyn, Huyen and Nicole are all strongly criticized for having bad walks while Alex and Leslie are praised for their impressive struts. Leslie is crowned the winner of the challenge.
At elimination, none of the girls are too harshly criticized for their photos.
However, the bottom two were Huyen and Alex. Huyen's name is called. However, Joanna informs the girls that Alex will be given another chance in the competition and everyone will move on to the next round. However, two girls will be sent home.
- First Call-Out: Leslie
- Bottom Two: Huyen and Alex
- Eliminated: Nobody
The girls have their next photo shoot. Bikini shots with Hai Giang. Caitlyn and Nicole struggle with being comfortable in their bathing suits. Alex and Huyen are both seemingly very confident in theirs.
Nicole expresses her worries about the photo shoot.
At elimination Alex, Ada, and Caitlyn are all highly praised for their great photos. Huyen is criticized for being too stiff and Nicole is told that she is not confident enough in her shots.
Alex recieves her second first call-out of the competition. Huyen's named is calle only to be told that she will not be receiving a photo. She is eliminated instantly.
The girls don't have time to get over their shock as Leslie and Nicole are both awaiting their judgement in the bottom 2. In the end, Nicole is eliminated.
- First Call-Out: Alex
- Bottom Two: Leslie and Nicole
- Eliminated: Huyen and Nicole
Leslie is considered the outcast amongst the remaining girls. Ada, Alex, and Caitlyn all exclude her from the conversations. At the photo shoot, the trio of Caitlyn, Alex, and Ada are all seen bad-mouthing one another. All the girls except Leslie seem to struggle trying to grasp the concept of the shoot.
At elmination, Leslie is the only who is praised for her shot while the other girls are all told that their photos do not meet standards.
During deliberation, Ada and Alex confide in one another about how much they don't trust Caitlyn. They are both on the same page about their uneasy feelings.
Leslie recieves her second first call-out of the competition.
Ada finds herself in the bottom 2 for the first time with Caitlyn.
Caitlyn is ultimately eliminated.
- First Call-Out: Leslie
- Bottom Two: Ada and Caitlyn
- Eliminated: Caitlyn
The 3 remaining ladies are thrown into their next photo shoot. They will all be portraying Fairy Nymps in the woods. The girls transform into colorful creatures for this very important photo shoot.
At elimiantion, Ada is prasied for exquisite shots.
Ada receives her first call-out of the competition and the judges are forced to decide which girl they should take to the finale. Alex or Leslie? Both girls were the front-runners throughout the competition.
In the end, Leslie is chosen over Alex.
Alex leaves on bitter terms with Ada as she wished Leslie the best of luck in the finale.
- First Call-Out: Ada
- Bottom Two: Leslie and Alex
- Eliminated: Alex
The two finalists travel to Atlanta Station for their final photo shoot with Hai Giang as well as their final runway challenge. The girls both produced strong photos in their final shoot. They both impress the judges with how strong both of their runway walks have improved, especially Ada.
The girls get back to the house and both reflect on their time on the show. Both are extremely nervous for the final judging.
In the end, Leslie's progression and overall potential helps her trumph over Ada. Leslie is crowned the winner of Project Zoolander.
- Final Two: Ada and Leslie
- Runner-Up: Ada
- Winner: Leslie
Call-out order Edit
Lime Green means the contestant won the competition.
Light blue means the contestant won the challenge.
Tomato means the contestant was runner-up.
Violet means the contestant was eliminated.
Orange means the contestant was called up and eliminated.
Pink means the contestant was originally eliminated but given another chance.
Ep 1: Beauty Shoot
Ep 2: Field Shoot
Ep 3: Pairs
Ep 4: Bikinis
Ep 5: Ballons
Ep 6: Fairy Nymphs in the woods
Ep 7: High Fashion Shots in the City