Kevin Iole talks to Arianny Celeste less than a week before her Playboy pictorial hits stands. She tells him about getting the gig with the UFC:
"Basically, all I knew about it from what I had heard was that you had to be able to walk around in a bikini and I said, ‘OK, I can handle that,' " Celeste said. "I was doing modeling gigs on the side in Vegas to get some extra money when I heard about the casting for the UFC. I had no idea what it was. It was a paycheck."
They talk about her big plans:
Celeste, though, doesn't want to be typecast as just a swimsuit model. She majored in fitness management and nutrition at UNLV and wants to further her brand in those areas.
"Carmen Electra meets J-Lo," she calls the "sexy, healthy fitness brand," that she hopes to advance in her future.
She recorded a song, "Fight to Love Me," that will be released at the end of the year. Though it isn't a UFC project, the UFC has gotten involved and plans to help her market and promote it.
"This is a really sharp girl and believe me, she's a really good singer," White said. "She has a lot going for her."
Arianny is following the career path of Rachelle Leah, the first UFC Octagon girl to make the cover of Playboy.
The gig is harder than it looks based on the brutal attrition rate over the last two years. Edith LaBelle was fired after calling in sick for UFC 100 and Logan Stanton and Natasha Wicks were both given the axe after UFC 107.
Arianny stands alone at the top of the Octagon Girl mountain, now they're trying to push her into mainstream stardom. I find it interesting that the UFC is putting this much promotional muscle (ie Kevin Iole quoting Dana White) behind her celebrity run. Does Playboy really have that kind of cultural relevance in the Internet age?