The Web      Powered by
powered by Yahoo!


Return to Transcripts main page


Interview with The Swan Cast

Aired September 24, 2004 - 21:00   ET


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People just don't understand what it feels like, inside to know, to feel ugly, unattractive.

LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, has TV plastic surgery gone too far?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I feel real good about myself. I feel beautiful.

KING: We'll ask the women who went under the knife physically...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She'll have lipsouction in 6 different areas.

KING: And emotionally.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think that's, like, when I lost my soul.

KING: And let the cameras capture some of the gruesome procedures, for TV's most controversial makeover show, "The Swan." They wanted beauty but at what cost? We'll ask Rachal Love-Fraser, first season winner of "The Swan" beauty pageant. First runner-up, Beth Lay, second runner-up Cindy Ingle, and Swan finalists Kelly Alemi, Merlene Norman and Serena Voight. Plus, the Swan's creator and its team of plastic surgeons, dentists and psychologists. All next on LARRY KING LIVE.

Good evening. A couple of quick program notes. This program was taped a little earlier this afternoon so I could be at home for Yom Kippur Eve and the services tonight and tomorrow at synagogue. Another program note, this Monday night, Mary Schiavo's parents will be with us, that's the young lady that's been on a -- Terri Schiavo's parents, rather. She has been on a machine keeping her alive -- there's been a lot of disputes in that. And the Florida Supreme Court has overthrown the previous rulings of the legislature and says she can be permitted to die. Her parents want her to live. They will be with us Monday night.

We're here to talk about an extraordinary program called "The Swan." With us are Nely Galan, she's the lifecoach and creator of "The Swan." And a board certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Sherri Worth, cosmetic and reconstructive dentist, and Dr. Lynn Ianni, psychotherapist.

There was a winner of this program. Before we get into all the details about it, let's watch. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: Rachel's Swan plan will include a nose job, lip enhancement, a chin implant, brow lift, liposuction and several visits to the dermatologist. For her body, she'll have a breast lift and lipsuction in 5 different areas.

At the dentist, Rachel will have zoom bleaching, full set of DiVinci veneers and cleaning. Her fitness regime will have a 1200 a day calorie diet and 2 hours a day of intense cardio and weight training, as well as theropy and coaching to build self-esteem.


KING: This program led "People" magazine to say, has TV plastic surgery gone too far? 16 women, 151 medical procedures. A good thing experts and contestants sound off in "People." We have the winner here, Rachel Frazier and the panel.

First, Nely, how to did this start?

NELY GALAN, LIFE COACH: Well, I came up with this show. Like, I'm a producer and a woman. And I thought, what would I want in my ideal fantasy? And I thought, I would want a team of people, you know, if I had a team of people like a star, like Oprah Winfrey would have, or Demi Moore would have, I could put my life back together when my life would get stuck.

KING: And how did it differ from say, "Extreme Makeover."

GALAN: Oh, very different. Because I think people don't realize --- it's funny that we're so controversial, because we are a true curriculum. Women come for five months and have extensive therapy and life coaching and they have -- they really work on their inside. So, the plastic surgery is two weeks of the whole show. And for five months they're doing the inside job.

KING: How did you get involved, Dr Dubrow?

DR. TERRY DUBROW, PLASTIC SURGEON: Nely went around to the plastic surgeons in the area...

KING: In Los Angeles.

Los Angeles. I think probably all over the place.

GALAN: Well, I interviewed about 250 plastic surgeons.

KING: Looking for?

GALAN: Looking for really great work and somebody who also would have really good people skills.

KING: Did you like this idea right away?

DUBROW: I had some reservations about it initially, particularly the competition aspect. But when I talked to the contestants and they told me, so I'm going to have all this plastic surgery and get to go home with it and dentistry and therapy? I'm in.

KING: What does the winner get?

GALAN: Every woman gets -- well, first of all, every woman that enters the show gets about $250,000 worth of free services.

KING: How is the winner picked?

GALAN: The winner is picked by panel of judges, just like Miss Universe.

KING: What does she get?

GALAN: And she gets about $250,000 of additional prizes and cash.

KING: We'll talk to Racheal in just a moment.

Dr. Worth, how did you get involved?

DR. SHERRI WORTH, COSMETIC AND RECONSTRUCTIVE DENTIST: Actually the same way as Dr. Dubrow. Nely approached us as she did many of the cosmetic and reconstructive dentists in the area. We talked a lot. And hit it off. And hopefully...

KING: Did you like the idea of this show?

WORTH: I loved the idea, because it wasn't just taking the teeth and making them beautiful, I get so much of that in my office, let me come in and let me have a beautiful smile and that will change my life, which it does. But this is from the inside. These girls came in down-and-out.

GALAN: You had a personal experience. You had had that similar thing?

WORTH: Exactly. I was born without a couple front teeth, which is somewhat debilitating as a child. And then when you get it fixed, it looks good, and makes you feel good.

KING: Dr. Ianni you work with them, pychotherapy. All of them got psychotherapy?

DR. LYNN IANNI, PYCHOLOGIST: Right. For the entire duration of the program.

KING: To deal with how they feel about themselves.

IANNI: To deal with how they felt before they went through the program. And also to help them a little bit with re-entry, so that by the time they were done with the outside changes, they would feel very comfortable in their new skin.

KING: Rachel, what made you want to enter? RACHEL LOVE-FRASER, THE SWAN WINNER: I think one of the main things that made me want to enter this, was I wanted a change in my life. I was in a rut, and I needed something, I needed something drastic to...

KING: How did you hear about it?

LOVE-FRASER: I heard about it in on a radio station at home.

KING: Home is where?

LOVE-FRASER: Home is in Washington, Washington State. So, I live right outside Seattle. But I heard about it on a popular radio show. They said they were doing an open casting call. And it was for me.

I kind of had a, I had a situation where about 4 months before I heard about the show, someone very close to me in my life committed suicide. And it really woke me up. I realized I was in rut and had to do something for my life to change it.

KING: Did you think you were ugly?

LOVE-FRASER: I thought I was average.

KING: Swan is for ugly ducklings, right?

LOVE-FRASER: I thought I was average.

GALAN: It's called "The Swan," because if you read the story of "The Ugly Duckling," the ugly duckling is a swan all along and doesn't know it, until it sees its reflection.

So, it's really not feeling like you're a swan when you actually have all the materials to be a swan, all along.

KING: So, you wrote a letter?

LOVE-FRASER: Actually, no. I went into an open audition. And there was a bunch of women that basically kind of told their story, you know, a little bit about themselves, their lives and why they wanted to be on the program. Andthen, a few of the women were called back to do one on one interviews. And it kind of went from there.

KING: What was it like to go through?

LOVE-FRASER: The initial process of trying to get chosen?

KING: No. The whole thing.

LOVE-FRASER: The whole thing? Amazing, absolutely amazine. You know, I got four months to do nothing but focus in on myself. I had never done that in my life.

KING: Are you married?


KING: You husband, what did he think of it?

LOVE-FRASER: He actually -- he was a great guy about it. I mean, when I told him about the whole idea, he was very supportive about it. He said, you know what, if you want to go on the show and you think this will make you feel better about yourself, that's fabulous.

And, I mean, during the show there were a couple of conversations, where we had a bit of -- like every relationship, you get a couple bumpy parts. Ultimately, he was just really happy that I was doing something for myself.

KING: Is he pleased with the results?

LOVE-FRASER: Yes. Definitely. But you know, the most pleasing thing for him, he says, is definitely that I'm happy. That's the most pleasing thing for him, is that I'm happy everyday.

KING: What was it like when you saw the new you?

LOVE-FRASER: Shocking. Absolutely shocking. There was this person standing in front of you. It was kind of almost like you weren't in your own body.

KING: Do you have children?

LOVE-FRASER: I have two step-children.

KING: What do they think?

LOVE-FRASER: They love it. They love it. And they love the fact, again, that I'm happy and that I did something for myself. I think a lot of the women on the show were a definite inspiration to people. You know, not everybody needs to go through the same process we did, but you need to change.

KING: What was the big problem Rachel faced?

DUBROW: Plastic surgery-wise? I think the difficulty for her, Dr. hayward actually did Rachel, her nose was particularly difficult from just the purely anatomical point of view, she had sort of difficulties there, large nostrils.

KING: What about her teeth, Sherri?

WORTH: She came win her teeth open like this. And basically did a full mouth reconstruction on her.

LOVE-FRASER: I love this woman.

KING: In psycho, did he handle head analysis well?

IANNI: She dealt with the suicide that she was grieving. She worked on her self-esteem, stop being so self-critical. She did a great job.

KING: Congratulations, Rachel.

LOVE-FRASER: Thank you.

KING: Rachel Love-Fraser, the winner of "The Swan." When we come back, we're going to meet other girls who were involved. We'll go through in all of our stages. And keep our panel as well.. We'll be right back.


GALAN: Our first runner-up this evening is Beth Lay, which means Rachel Love-Fraser, you are the first ever Swan!




BETH LAY, SWAN FIRST RUNNER-UP: My name is Beth and I live in Milton, Washington. I've always wanted to look wonderful on the outside and to feel like I'm my own person and know who I am on the inside.

I got married at 19 years old, and I have a little boy.

You guys (UNINTELLIGIBLE). Is that for me?

After having a child, I have this disgusting stomach with stretch marks and an abnormal bellybutton. I think that's probably why. I do have issues with being intimate with my husband.


KING: The new season of "The Swan" starts October 25 on Fox with a two-hour special. It is one hour every week, right?

GALAN: That's right.

KING: And a new book is coming out?

GALAN: New book, "The Swan Curriculum," and it's the inside job. It's the work the women did really discovering who they were on the inside, and it's got all the before and after pictures of all the swans.

KING: OK. Beth Lay joins us now, the first runner-up. You saw the earlier part of our story. Let's watch the procedure.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Beth Lay features a number of procedures, beginning with her face. She'll have a brow lift, a nose job, lip enhancement, chin liposuction, and lasic eye surgery. For best body, she'll have breast augmentation, tummy tuck and liposuction of her calves and ankles.

Beth's dental procedures will include zoom bleaching, Da Vinci veneers, raising of her gums, lower orthodontics and deep cleaning. For her fitness program, Beth will be put on a 1,200-calorie a day diet and will spend 120 hours in the gym.


KING: Beth, you're a robot. Brow job, nose job, lip enhancement, chin liposuction, lasic eye surgery, breast augmentation, tummy tuck, liposuction, teeth bleaching, gum surgery, lower orthodontics and deep periodontal cleaning.

LAY: Yeah, I had the works.

KING: What was that like to go through?

LAY: It was painful to go through, but you heal pretty quickly, especially when you're not paying attention to your bruising in the mirrors. And it's amazing, the results are amazing.

KING: Are you glad you did it?

LAY: I'm very glad I did it, and I would definitely do it all over again.

KING: Once you're in, it's hard to -- I mean, once they start this, you can't say, I think I quit, right?

LAY: Oh, no, no way. I would never -- I'm not a quitter. So there's no way I would ever quit this.

KING: How did you choose the 16?

GALAN: Well, you know what? I'm glad you said that, because if we had people apply that just wanted plastic surgery, we wouldn't have taken them on the show.

KING: So what were the criteria?

GALAN: Well, we wanted people with stories and people who would really be willing to do the therapy and the life coaching and the training and eating nutritionally sound. And that's four months of the program. The beginning is just the plastic surgery. If you just did the plastic surgery, you are going to leave as soon as it's done. So that's not what we want.

KING: Did you do Beth?


KING: You did? What was her major?

DUBROW: You know, she just needed a little refinement head to toe. She's basically a very beautiful girl with great basic bone structure, but she needed sort of every body part changed a little bit, you know. And that's one of the beauties of "The Swan" program. It's not just one aspect, goodbye, go home, good luck. We actually change them internally and externally, completely.

KING: Why is it controversial, Sherri?

WORTH: I think it's controversial because everyone says, "plastic surgery." Which is a controversial word in today's society. But now it's coming out to be OK.

GALAN: I don't know why. Everybody in Hollywood has it done and nobody admits it. I don't know...


KING: What did you do for her teeth?

WORTH: You know, she came in and said, "I have a Joker smile, it's bothered me all my life, please fix it."

KING: Big, big mouth?

WORTH: Big, huge smile. So we tucked her lip down, I raised her gum tissues, gave her a bunch of veneers, put some braces on her lower teeth, and now I think she looks pretty fabulous. To help (UNINTELLIGIBLE).

KING: What about dealing with her emotionally?

IANNI: Beth had some relationship issues that we worked on. She had a lingering resentment about an incident in the past with her husband, and we worked through that and gave her a way to go home and start her marriage all over again.

KING: You're still with your husband?

LAY: Yeah.

KING: And what does he think about all this?

LAY: He is amazed with everything. He loves my lips, my big, pillowy lips. His favorite part. But you know, every marriage has its ups and downs, and we're definitely working through things. And we're going to stay together, and...

KING: Do you have a child?

LAY: We do. We have a little boy who's 3.

KING: What did he think of mommy?

LAY: You know, he didn't recognize me at first.

KING: Really? LAY: Which was a little bit painful, but he loves me now and he's proud of his mommy, the swan. And he always says, "I want to watch you on 'The Swan,' mommy." So he's very cute.

KING: Did you ever feel you were being used as a prop? For a show, in other words you were like part of show business here, they were helping you but also...

LAY: You know, honestly, after I left, I felt a little bit like I was a prop. But I guess it's in all how you look at things. And then looking back, you know, these people sitting here really helped me through some amazing difficulties in my life. Nely was my life's coach. Dr. Dubrow and Sherri Worth helped me, you know, with my appearance. And then Dr. Ianni, thank goodness for her, she really helped me with a lot of emotional issues.

KING: Did your experience in your own life lead you to start this, Nely?

GALAN: Yeah, it did. I mean, I had had a baby, and I had broken up with the father of my son, and I had sort of hit a roadblock, like many women hit, where you just go, what's it all about? You know, maybe some parts of my life were working and some parts of my life aren't. And again, I was just very intrigued by the idea of a team of people working together to focus on one person. Because in life, you go to one doctor, one therapist. They don't all talk to each other and look at you as a whole person.

And I guess that was my wish. That would be my wish for myself, to have this holistic approach to my life, and have people tell me how could I make my life better? So I thought, let's do it for women.

KING: What is a life coach?

GALAN: A life coach is really -- unlike what Sherri does -- I mean, what Lynn does, which is really deal with your past and really heal a lot of your issues, my job is really to keep you true to what you say you want. If you say you want to lose 40 pounds, I'm going to say to you, you know what, you're eating twinkies, you're cheating. I mean, then don't tell me you want to lose 40 pounds. I mean, everybody needs tough love.

KING: Don't do that. Life coach says don't do that.

GALAN: Don't do that. I've hired life coaches, I've hired business coaches, and that's what they do.

KING: Do you get a lot of rewards, Dr. Dubrow, about what you do?

DUBROW: Yeah, I mean, financial obviously, being a plastic surgeon is very rewarding that way. But it's incredibly rewarding emotionally. I mean, we get to change people.

KING: You also do a lot of work at hospitals when people are in accidents, you know, that don't come to you just to get a better nose, but who are in bad shape.

DUBROW: Honestly, I've done that. I don't do as much of it now, because to be honest, I'm really popular now, so I don't have as much time, but I do do charity work for organizations where homeless people are involved. I do a lot of that.

KING: You'd recommend this to people, Beth? There is a whole new season starting.

LAY: I would recommend it to people that have emotional issues to deal with, and the plastic surgery is just a benefit. Because most people are beautiful, and like Nely said, they just don't know it until after they come to peace with themselves.

KING: Congratulations, Beth. You look great.

LAY: Thank you.

KING: We'll be back. We'll meet the second runner up, Cindy Ingle. Don't go away.


LAY: Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh. I don't look like me! My teeth! Oh, my gosh, I've got boobs. Oh, my gosh! Oh, my gosh! Oh, my gosh! I look so beautiful!




CINDY INGLE, THE SWAN CONTESTANT: My name is Cindy Ingle. I am 32-years-old. I grew up in a small town. I was really, really shy. Big nose. And I was just an easy target for kids to pick on.

When I was in elementary school, my grade put on a Halloween program. I was easily selected to be the witch. That's how I see myself.

People just don't understand what it feels like inside to know, to feel ugly.


KING: During this whole process, Nely, no mirrors, right?

GALAN: No mirrors.

KING: They don't see what's going to happen.

GALAN: No. And the reason for that is so they go inward. So you're not focused on the external.

DUBROW: I had some concerns about that initially. I thought, you know, they would not be able to see themselves. But it was the best thing. Normally, when you have plastic surgery, you're so overly concerned about worried about the swelling and the bruising, you have to hand hold, it makes it difficult. This, they can immediately can forgot about all of that.

KING: OK. Cindy Ingle joins us, second-runner up. Let's watch her story.


ANNOUNCER: Cindy's plan features several procedures, starting with her face. She will have a nose job, brow and mid-facelift, cheek refinement and fat removal below the eye, lip augmentation, liposuction, and shortening of the chin, photo facial hair removal, collagen and lasik eye surgery.

For her body, Cindy will have breast augmentation, liposuction of the inner thighs as well as a tummy tuck. For her fitness transformation, Cindy will be put on a 1200 calorie a day diet and will spend two hours a day at the gym.

For confidence and self-esteem, she will undergo weekly therapy and coaching.


KING: It is true you're now a correspondent for a Fox station in San Diego?

INGLE: That is true.

KING: Reporting on "The Swan?"

INGLE: Yes, I am.

KING: Probably going to undercover something. Ruin them for life, right?

Why did you get into this?

INGLE: I got into the program, because it was offered me a lot of things that I always wanted. I haven't been able -- I never had the means. And it was just given me an opportunity that I really wanted.

KING: You were married, you had children, right? Your husband didn't complain?

INGLE: Not at all. He never complained.

KING: It was for you?

INGLE: It was for me. It was all for me, which is a good thing, because I don't think people should go into, especially, plastic surgery for someone else, they should do it for themselves. And that's what I did it for, was for me. KING: What was it like when you saw the result?

INGLE: Oh my god, I was shocked and excited. Like this whirlwind of emotions. Is it me? My god, my nose, it was exciting.

KING: Did you think of yourself as a teenager as ugly?

INGLE: I did in a sense. I felt like I really had to work hard to get attention, like makeup, I had to work really hard to get pretty, because I was really self-conscious about my nose. And other people around me are having dates, I'm not, I'm thinking, OK, I know why. I did. I felt real self-conscious.

KING: Dr. Ianni, what was Cindy like to work with?

IANNI: Cindy was wonderful to work with. She came in win lots of homework done every time we left each other. And she touched on almost every single area in her life. She dealt with issues of a friend that she had lost, talked about her marriage.

KING: Does everyone stay together? I mean, is everyone together, in a certain place?

GALAN: Oh, you mean the girls? Yes. They all are sequestered together.

KING: For how long?

GALAN: Between four and five months, depending on how long you're here.

KING: So, your husband has to accept this, your children?

INGLE: Yes, I was away from my husband. He was in the Navy. He was out to sea, so our children, we have 2 boys, were actually in New Mexico with my famly.

KING: Is it all done in L.A., doctor?

DUBROW: There's 2 surgeons, myself and Dr. Hayworth. He's in Beverly Hills and I'm in Newport Beach. So, we do some of the cases together, some I do by myself, some I do with him. And he needs my help, primarily why I use him.

KING: And Dr. Hayworth will be joining us in the next segment, replacing Dr. Dubrow.

What did we do, Dr. Worth, with her -- with Cindy's teeth?

WORTH: I did about 25 veneers on Cindy.

KING: 25 what?

WORTH: Veneers, porcelain veneers, which are thin coatings that go on her teeth. And, you know, initially when I looked at her, her nose came down below her teeth. And with the rhinoplasty in combination with the veneers, I think she really looks incredible.


INGLE: What do you think, Larry?

KING: I think you look fantastic.

INGLE: Thank you.


KING: What do looks do to people?

IANNI: You know, she had a very specific issue with a physical part of her body. And that's different than most of the people that have gone through the program, where there's sort of a generic sense that I'm just not adequate or attractive or OK, but Cindy's was very localized around her nose. So, her looks really impacted her self esteem. And it was such a treat to really take somebody who was actually kind of feeling OK, add the piece of the physical self to it in a whole new way and give her just an amazing shift.

GALAN: From Cindy's point of view, the response we got from the audience, because Cindy's Latina, as I am, and we got such an incredible response from Latinos, because transforming is very different and our families relate to it very differently.

KING: Don't like it?

GALAN: Actually it's not so much -- the plastic surgery is not as scandalous as the therapy. The idea of going and talking about your family is not very Latino. We got an incredible response from the Latino. So we got an incredible response from the Latino community. And it just really opened a lot of doors.

KING: Dr, critics have called the shows some ghastly, dubbed the contestants brides of Frankenstein, plastic surgeons are afraid patients have inflated hopes of what it will do for them. Is there a possibility the show sends the wrong message?

DUBROW: You know, those criticisms came out before the show was actually aired. So, they're completely inaccurate. Those critics haven't actually seen the show. I don't think so. I don't think you can go to a plastic surgeon and convince him to do too much surgery.

The idea is, you go to a plastic surgeon, he gives you a realistic set of ideas and expectations of what you can achieve. And he tells you about it. It's more of a consult/teaching situation. So, I don't believe that's true.

KING: Cindy, now you're a journalist, right?

INGLE: Yes. Well, working on it.

KING: Check your sources. Any memorandum, be careful.


KING: Dr. Dubrown, thanks for joining us. Dr. Dubrow of Newport Beach will leave. And Dr. Hayworth, the other plastic surgeon involved will join us for our remaining segments.

Again, we taped this show early today, because of Yom Kippur. We'll be back. Don't go back.


INGLE: Oh, my god! Wow!




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Congratulations, you're going to be a swan.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I can't believe. I heard it on the radio. I never thought in a million years it would happen to me.

My name is Kelly Ellami. I would never think anyone would be looking at me and think that I'm pretty. I don't like to show my body at all. If I can look in the mirror at the end of all of this and be happy with who I am and what I've achieved, then I've won.


KING: Let's meet our panel before we tell Kelly's Alemi story. So, remaining with us is Nely Galan, the life coach coach and creator of "The Swan" which returns October 25, right?

GALAN: That's right.

KING: We're now joined by Dr. Randall Hayworth. He is the other plastic surgeon. He practices, in Beverly Hills. We'll he doesn't practice, he's good at it.

Dr. Sherri Worth is cosmetic and reconstructive Dentist. And Dr. Lynn Ianni is the psychotherapist.

And here, let's watch the Kelly Alemi story.


ANNOUNCER: Kelly's plans features several procedures starting with her face. She'll have a brow lift, lip enhancement, liposuction of her chin and cheeks, several visits to the dermatologist, collagen and lasik eye surgery.

For Kelly's body, she'll have breast augmentation and liposuction in six different areas.

Dental procedures will include zoom bleaching, DiVinci veneers, cleaning and repairing her teeth.

For her fitness transformation, Kelly will be put on a 1,200 calorie a day diet and spend quite a bit of time in the gym.

For confidence and self-esteem, she will undergo weekly therapy and coaching.


KING: We saw how happy you were to be selected, Kelly. Did it all work out? It's obvious it did.

KELLY ALEMI, THE SWAN FINALIST: It worked out really great. I mean, I'm just really blessed with who I am and what I've become. And, you know what, for once in my life, I'm happy. Before "The Swan" program, I honestly felt like I couldn't breathe, like my soul was lost. And now I feel like I can breathe and I'm living. It's just amazing

KING: You're engaged now?

ALEMI: I'm engaged. See my ring.

KING: Let's welcome Dr. Hayworth. We heard from our other surgeon. What particular problems did Kelly presents?

DR. RANDAL HAYWORTH, PLASTIC SURGEON: Well, Dr. Dubrow did Kelly's surgery. But she presents pretty much with -- what did you have done? Yo u had some lip underneath here and a total body makeover as well as a nose and soem brow enhancement.

KING: How do you deal with patient's fear?

HAYWORTH: Well, I think it's very important to establish a doctor/patient relationship. And the patient really has to resonate with the doctor and vice versa. And I think when patients start to feel comfortable, pretty much like I'm starting to feel comfortable here, then your fear level drops down.

It is a very fearful thing to undergo plastic surgery for the first time. And I try to tell patients, sort of like the buddhists say, lean into the sword, just understand you will experience fear, but it's totally normal.

KING: What emotional problems did Kelly face, Lynn?

IANNI: Kelly, had a broken relationship that causing was her a great deal of distress. And she was working really hard to get through it, because it was a source of a lot of negative self-talk.

KING: Did the way she looked have an effect on her relationship?

IANNI: I don't think that was really the issue for her. I think it was more about stepping into herself as an adequate person and feeling good enough would then invite her to make a connection with somebody else who treated her well. She treated herself badly the way she had been formerly. She would just keep inviting that kind of treatment from others.

KING: So, you would recommend this highly.

ALEMI: I would recommend this to anyone. I think that, you know, they are continuing on with season 2 and hopefully season 3 and it will keep going.

KING: So, every one of the 16 is a winner. There's every one who gets some cash, right, but everyone is a winner. Look what they did to you.

ALEMI: Well, you can't put a price on self-esteem and self- respect. And that's what I got out of the whole program. No, I did not win the crown, but yes, I won my self-dignity. And I am just so happy with just that. That's what I came here for. I mainly came here, not necessarily for the plastic surgery, but to get my self back.

KING: Well, you look great. And I understand, Nely, that after we tape, you're going to go over and have everyone from this year meet last year's?

GALAN: Yes. Well, the girls from this season, season two are dying to meet the girls from season one, because they saw their shows and each one got inspire bide a different swan.

KING: They're all done now, right?

GALAN: They're not all done. They're halfway through the process.

KING: Halfway?

GALAN: They've been through plastic surgery, but they're now going through curriculum, and going through therapy, and the book and the therapy. So they still have a ways to go before they're revealed.

KING: What did you do for Kelly's teeth, Sherri?

WORTH: I did a full makeover on Kelly's teeth. But the funny thing about Kelly, is she was about to run out of my office before I even started working on her.

KING: Run out?

ALEMI: I was scared.

WORTH: Well, everyone's afraid of the dentist. And hopefully I eased her fears on that by putting her to sleep while I did the work on her.

KING: What did you have to do?

WORTH: I did some work on her fillings. And I did, basically, a full mouth of veneers, and then I put some braces on her lower teeth and straightened them out. KING: Veneer definition?

WORTH: A veneer is a thin porcelain sheeth that's bonded to the front of your tooth. For years we had to ground our teeth down and put little crowns on them everywhere, so your teeth are essentially gone underneath. It's a some what new procedure, where we take a half millimeter off the front surface of the tooth structure and place the porcelain veneer on top that makes her teeth look fabulous.

KING: Dr. Hayworth, do you work a lot with this?

HAYWORTH: Yes. One of my specialties is lip surgery and inventive or came up with a lot of inventive and long lasting, or permanent lip augmentation. It's very important to understand that the teeth are the picture, wheras the lips are the frame.

WORTH: And he is amazing with the lip surgery.

KING: He is.

HAYWORTH: And that's why we have to work in close conjunction.

WORTH: Oh, phenomenal.

KING: Physical can change mental.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And mental can change physical for sure.

GALAN: It's all together. It has to be all together.

This ones very mischievous. And we had to -- she was a difficult swan.

ALEMI: I was the bad swan. Nelt was very, very hard on me. She gave me a lot of tough love, but I really needed it.

KING: She was your drill sergeant.

ALEMI: She was my drill sergeant. I gave her a run for her money.

KING: Congratulations, Kelly.

ALEMI: Kelly Alemi.

We'll meet Merlene Norman, another Swan finalist next. Don't go away.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is that me? I look beautiful.


(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My sex life actually, when I first met Carlos was really great. But then I got pregnant. And then after having 3 kids, the breasts got even smaller and it really bothers me.

It would be wonderful to be able to wear a negligee and feel good about myself. I'm really looking forward to having my teeth straight and being able to laugh and not think twice about it.

I keep saying next month I'm getting my braces. The money goes somewhere else, the kids need shoes. My braces can wait. I've already waited ten years. I mean, just to be able to smile with straight teeth.


KING: Merlene Norman joins us now, another Swan finalist. She has three children and works as a translator for the deaf. Let's see her story.


ANNOUNCER: Merlene's plans feature several procedures, starting with her face. She will have a brow lift, an upper lid lift, liposuction below the eyes and chin, fat transfer and refinement of the cheeks and lasik eye surgery.

For her body, Merlene will have breast augmentation as well as a tummy tuck.

At the dentist, Merlene's procedures include zoom breeching to whiten her teeth, upper and lower veneers, surgery on her gums, three root canals, extensive decay removal and deep cleaning.

For her fitness transformation, Merlene will be put on a 1,700 calorie a day diet and will spend two hours a day in the gym focusing on weight training.

She will undergo weekly therapy and coaching to learn how to tackle her insecurities and focus on herself.


KING: Merlene Norman. Three root canals? Forget all the rest. Root canals. Did you do the root canals.

WORTH: Actually, Dr. Bon Christiani (ph) did the root canals. He's my endodentist

MERLENE NORMAN, SWAN FINALIST: And a great job at that.

KING: Why did you need to lose weight?

NORMAN: It's not so much that I needed to lose weight, I needed to tone-up. And I didn't have time to do that after 3 kids, and a single mother and working a full time job.

KING: How to you feel now?

NORMAN: Oh, I feel alive. It's a brand new me, a brand new perspective. It's -- I couldn't ask for anything more.

KING: Translator for the deaf means you take -- you go to speeches, people speak and then you do the hand signals?

NORMAN: I go ahead and interpret exactly what you would be saying right now.

KING: I see.

What was it like to go through this process?

NORMAN: It was tough, but it was great. Like I said, I came in ready to give my soul, you know, here's my soul, have it, take it, do what you need with it, because I'm at the bottom and I can't do it. I need a little help.

And going through this process it swas a struggle. The hardest part was Dr. Ianni, because I grew up in a household, it was a different household. I grew up with two deaf parents, and I had to take care of them, so I to grow up really fast. And so -- but coming out of this now, I found the person that has been in side.

KING: So, it's the whole ball of wax that works?

NORMAN: Oh, yes.

KING: What were the phsyical situations, Dr. Hayworth?

HAYWORTH: Merlene started off with a really great bone structure to begin with, I just wanted to concentrate on her eyes, because she has beautiful eyes and yet she was being crowded through years of aging and stress, et cetera, et cetera, and she needed release.

I just had to work a little bit around her lips. Her nose was perfect, didn't want to touch that. And then we just had to just do some body refinement to enhance your self-image of femininity.

KING: What about teeth, Dr. Worth?

WORTH: She was my big case. I would have loved to put braces on Merlene. But by the time she got to me, she had so much decay in all of her teeth, that we had periadontal work to do, endodontal work to do. And we ended up doing crowns and veneers on her instead of doing the ortho, becuase I couldn't do the ortho. She was a great case, and such a thankful individual.

KING: What about emotionally, Dr. Ianni?

IANNI: She worked so hard. Her natural inclination was to be become closed and strong as a protect herself from having to grow up so early, like she was mentioning. So, it was about thawing her out, and letting that ice princess melt into somebody could receive as well as give to other people. KING: And what about life coaching.

GALAN: Well, I think that she was resenting her job as a translator, because it was so tied to her parents and her taking care of her parents. And I think we taught her how to turn that around, and turn it into her greatest asset. And possibly her greatest business asset that she could make a lot of money in, in the future.

NORMAN: Definitely. I love what I do now.

KING: How did the children react.

NORMAN: Oh, the children love -- they love everything. My 6- year-old, when I came home, just couldn't stop telling me that I was prettiest one. Mommy, you were the prettiest one.

And when we go shopping, my 2-year-old will say, mommy, the swan, mommy, the swan. So, it's, to me, it's like the greatest example I could set for my kids now.

KING: Did you meet your fiance after all this was done or before?

NORMAN: No. This was before. And so, now...

KING: How did he react?

NORMAN: Oh, he loves it. It's great. Thanks to Dr. Ianni and all the thawing out that we did, and the smile that you gave to me and the security that you gave to me, to feel like a woman, all of it tied together, it -- I'm a much happier person.

IANNI: She wasn't engaged, by the way.

NORMAN: I wasn't engaged before "The Swan," now, I'm engaged.

KING: Dr. Hayward, do you know how it's going to come out before you do it?

HAYWARD: Roughly. But part of the excitement of plastic surgery is it takes a life of its own. And we apply the paint and the canvas, we have a rough idea of how it behaves, but how it dries, and how quickly it dries, is very much an individual thing.

KING: So, they're not all DiVinci?

HAYWARD: We aim to be DiVincis, every single one, but it really depends on what canvas each patient brings to us. Some patients just don't have the bone structure that would allow us to really get a masterpiece sometimes.

KING: Did all the contestants bond together? Are you all friends?

NORMAN: Oh, definitely. It's more like a sorority sisterhood. And it's great, because we only have each other to turn to. KING: If you did a show for men, what would you call it?

GALAN: Don't ask, Larry.

KING: The Larries.

Anyway, we'll be back with our finalist, the last finalist of "The Swan. Serena Voight. Don't go away.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, my god. I am as hot as I feel. Oh, my god, look at my teeth! I love me!




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When I look in the mirror, I see the ultimate plain Jane. I was married to my ex-husband for almost four years. About 2 1/2 years into the marriage, he started seeing someone else and built a relationship.

A lot has been taken from me. Things I loved, things I committed myself to. And so, it's very sad. In my life right now, I'm just a little lost.


KING: Our final guest tonight is one of the finalists on "The Swan," Serena Voight. Look at the -- whoa. Let's watch Serena's story.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Serena (UNINTELLIGIBLE) went into several procedures, starting with her face. She'll have a brow lift, a mid- facelift, fat transfer to her lips, and fat removed from her upper eyelid. She'll also have a mole removed and photo facials to even out her skin tone. Additionally, Serena will undergo lasic eye surgery.

On her body, she'll have liposuction in six different areas. At the dentist, Serena will have zoom bleaching, gum tissue recontouring and deep cleaning. She will also get orthodontics to straighten her lower teeth.

For her fitness transformation, Serena will be put on a 1,200 calorie a day diet and will spend over 120 hours in the gym doing cardio and high repetition weight training.


KING: The book, "The Swan Curriculum," will be out in October. And you can order it now on Amazon. And our final finalist on the show tonight is Serena Voight. Whoa. I bet your husband is sorry.

SERENA VOIGHT, "THE SWAN" FINALIST: He is, but for many reasons.

KING: What was it like for you?

VOIGHT: The program?

KING: The whole thing.

VOIGHT: It was great, it was the biggest gift, the greatest gift that anyone could receive. And I was so grateful, and I still am. And I'm touched whenever I think about it, I kind of get choked up. Because these people here, supporting and helping, and Nely's creative and her passion for this, to help other people through what she's gone through, it's just -- it's been -- it was hard, but it was great.

KING: Dr. Hayworth, what was the physical end?

HAYWORTH: Again, Dr. Dubrow basically worked with you, Serena, and from what I understand he did a lot of -- he did the brow lift, I think again, which was the mainstay of your transformation, and opening up your eyes, because you had those really sad eyes.

VOIGHT: He took extra skin off my eyelids. Because -- I have deep-set eyes...

KING: What did you feel like when you saw the new you?

VOIGHT: It was great. I was surprised, because I'd always tried to do things to improve myself, and went, oh, it's still me. You know? And when I looked -- and I thought when I'd look in the mirror, it's still going to just be completely plain Jane Serena, because that's how I always thought of myself, as plain Jane. And when I looked in the mirror, I thought, no, I think I look pretty good.

KING: No plain Jane. What about the teeth, Sherri?

WORTH: You know, she actually had a great set of teeth, and we just did some little refinements. I did a little gum surgery on her, and we straightened her teeth up a little bit with some orthodontics.


KING: She lost -- her husband had cheated on her, left her? What was that like for you, Dr. Ianni?

IANNI: She worked through that beautifully, and I think she was a very easy therapy candidate, because she was so good at being loving and giving to others. We just had to tweak it a little bit, so she would learn how to do it for herself as well. That was her biggest challenge.

KING: And what was it like for you, Nely?

GALAN: Well, I was a little tough with Serena, because she was still holding onto items that her ex-husband had given her. And I was like, bye-bye, lucky, buy-bye, let's get rid of them. You came here to work on herself; it's not about dealing with him. So I really got her back focusing on herself.

KING: What did friends say when you came back?

VOIGHT: They were supportive, but some of them were like, if I didn't know you were coming, I wouldn't have known it was you. And some of them were like, you know, you still look like our same old Serena, but just you know, a little bit better, refreshed.

KING: Who should try to get on this show?

VOIGHT: People who are willing to work, and people who are really open to the experience and willing to put their energy into every component. Again, it is not just plastic surgery. That's the easiest part of it. You know, you go in -- a little bit -- there's some pain, some discomfort, but to do the work, to do the life coaching, to do the therapy, to really do what you need to do.

KING: So it's not just do me, right?

GALAN: No. You have to handle -- it's like anything in life, if you don't put in the work, you're only going to get out of this program what you put into it. And for me, it's thrilling, because I feel like I've invented the greatest job on the planet for a woman, for me to work with other women and to have this incredible team of people, is just a great...

KING: Dr. Hayworth, did you have any doubts about this show?

HAYWORTH: At first, I had a little bit of reservations, like with Dr. Dubrow, because it's not every day that we get such an opportunity, and in such a very sort of dare I say like flamboyant or very out there type of way. And we were a little bit worried about the pageant, but then speaking with the girls, they realized that that was -- they felt that that was the most empowering aspect of the whole show, and so we eventually came down and really enjoyed our experience.

GALAN: The pageant is the most important thing in the show, because for women, unless you give women a big motivator, you're going to appear in a bathing suit in front of millions of people, who is going to work out three hours a day? I had to give them a big motivator. And that's why when people hear about the pageant, they don't get it. Wasn't it the number one fun thing that motivated you to stick to it?

VOIGHT: It was fun. It was actually a lot of fun.

WORTH: You also spend about five minutes with Nely, and you want to go conquer the world.

KING: Also, the last thing you'd have thought two years ago, I'm going to be in a pageant.

VOIGHT: You have got to be kidding me. I would have said, I am going to be in -- no. In a bathing suit...


KING: Did any of the 16 flake out of it?

IANNI: Flake out of the program?

KING: Leave the program.

GALAN: We had one.

IANNI: Yes, we did.

GALAN: We had one.

KING: And left because?

GALAN: She looked at herself in the mirror, she just couldn't take the therapy and the inside work. That's what everybody doesn't get, the hard part of the show is the inside job.

IANNI: And I think she also felt very isolated and unsupported, and she was having a hard time doing it on her own. Because there is a piece of that where you're going to be naked, vulnerable on every level, emotionally, physically with a bunch of strangers. So if you're really dependent on your family for that kind of support, it's a tough road.

KING: OK. The book will be out in October. You can get it on "The Swan Curriculum." The program debuts second year...

GALAN: October 25.

KING: October 25, with a two-hour special.

GALAN: Correct. And the pageant is on December 20, and we're now officially the number one pageant in America. We've beaten "Miss USA," "Miss America" and "Miss Universe."

KING: Where's the pageant held?

GALAN: It's held here in Los Angeles.

KING: Serena, congratulations.

VOIGHT: Thank you.

KING: Serena Voight and Nely Galan -- Galan or Galan?

GALAN: Galan.

KING: Like (UNINTELLIGIBLE). Dr. Randall Hayward, Dr. Sherri Worth, Dr. Lynn Ianni.

The show was on tape tonight because of the Yom Kippur service. And again, on Monday night, Terry Schiavo's parents will be with us, the Schindlers from Florida. They are flying into Los Angeles to appear with us. The courts in Florida have determined that her life system can be removed.

Speaking of life system, we lost a great friend last night. Kaye Coleman. If you've ever been to Los Angeles and went to Nate and Al's, a very popular restaurant in Beverly Hills, Kaye Coleman was Nate and Al's. She was more than just a waitress, she was part of the culture of the city. She infused herself in many lives. Everybody loved her. She died of cancer at age 69. If she was your friend, she was your friend for life. She was a confidante. She was involved. To call her a waitress would be like calling Dr. Freud just another doctor. Kaye Coleman was special, and she will be sorely missed.


International Edition
CNN TV CNN International Headline News Transcripts Advertise With Us About Us
   The Web     
Powered by
© 2005 Cable News Network LP, LLLP.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us.
external link
All external sites will open in a new browser. does not endorse external sites.
 Premium content icon Denotes premium content.
Add RSS headlines.