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Julia Fox and Law Roach showcase sustainable style in ‘OMG Fashun’

With the years-long success of series like “Project Runway” and “America’s Next Top Model,” fashion competition reality TV shows are nothing new. But “OMG Fashun” is a different type of series ripe for short attention spans and a style-savvy generation more attuned to the concerns about the environment.

“There’s so many awful things happening in the world,” says Julia Fox, the show’s co-host, over the phone from New Mexico, where she’s in production for a movie. “And this isn’t one of them.”

OMG Fashun,” which premiered May 6 on E! and airs weekly at 9 p.m. Pacific, is a thrilling reality competition series hosted by Fox, fashion’s “It” girl and cultural renegade, and celebrity stylist Law Roach. The show brings sustainable fashion to the forefront with quickfire competitions and a rotation of guest judges that includes Phaedra Parks of “Real Housewives” fame, “13 Reasons Why” star Tommy Dorfman and more.

But “OMG Fashun” opts for snackable episodes primed for the TikTok generation — roughly 20 minutes each — that feature three rising “fashion disruptors” competing in two separate challenges. The catch? They’re encouraged to use sustainable, upcycled — and often — unconventional materials like insects and condoms. It’s chaotic — and that’s the point.

Behind the series is Scout Productions, known for reality shows like “Queer Eye,” “Legendary” and “The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning,” a company with decades of experience in the reality competition space. After producing the two-season streetwear competition series “The Hype,” Scout Productions co-founder David Collins and Chief Creative Officer Rob Eric were asked by their agent if they wanted to chat with Fox. A 15-minute conversation turned into an hour-long one.

Three people sitting on stools on a TV set.

Model Wisdom Kaye, left, a guest judge on “OMG Fashun” with hosts Julia Fox and Law Roach.

(Quantrell Colbert/E! Entertainment)

“She brought this originality to how we look at fashion, how we look at ourselves in fashion, what fashion actually is,” Eric says in an interview alongside Collins over Zoom. “That it doesn’t need to be a $40,000 outfit, but it actually could be leaves that she found in a park.” That sparked the idea for “OMG Fashun.” He added, “We thought, ‘Oh, what would it be like if we could take 90 minutes of ‘Project Runway,’ mix with ‘The Hype’ chopped into it, and put it into a 21-minute show?’

Eric and Collins, who executive produced the series, were in constant awe of how Fox, 34, made her mark in the fashion world with an unwavering sense of authenticity. “She wore a dress made of condoms. She wore a dress made of ties. All [the] sustainable stuff that she was doing, and it kept getting put into TMZ, WWD and Elle magazine. We knew that Julia had that voice,” Eric says.

Reality TV came naturally for Fox, whose prior credits have been in film. After all, she’s used to doing “new stuff.” However, it was admittedly “more work than acting” for her because whole episodes had to be shot in a day.

“It was a lot of outfit changes, a lot of time in hair and makeup, super early call time, ending super late at night,” she says.

But Fox seemingly made it look easy. Collins says everyone was “slack-jawed” from the second she sat down on the stage despite never having starred on a TV show before. “We’re like, ‘What? We’re not having to prompt her, tell her, and remind her?’ She just killed it over, over and over again,” he says.

Roach, 45, who was recruited by Scout Productions after working on “Legendary,” was intrigued by the premise of “OMG Fashun” — highlighting emerging designers and sustainability. Fox also had wanted to work with the stylist for a while. “We both had admiration for each other’s work and the things that she wore. I think her stylist is incredible,” he says over the phone from Los Angeles.

The pair ultimately had a “fun” dynamic, he says, since Fox “doesn’t take herself seriously at all.”

“She gave me so much agency to poke fun at her and she did the same to me,” Roach says. “She’d create this really fun and friendly and kooky work environment, so it was great. It made me excited to go to work every day and to see what she was going to wear because we didn’t share outfits.”

A woman in a halter top and miniskirt adorned with knickknacks holds a drawer on her head.

Julia Fox modeling a design on “OMG Fashun.”

(Quantrell Colbert/E! Entertainment)

While Fox and Roach had fun with their roles on the show, the talent was nothing to mock. “These young designers had these incredible gifts and ideas of how to take discarded materials and turn them into wearable works of art,” he says.

So “OMG Fashun” doesn’t just want to be another fashion show. “We’ve seen other shows that have a component where there’s a challenge where they’re instructed to create a garment out of recycled materials or upcycling or discarded fabrics,” Roach says. “But this one, the entire show is based on that principle.”

Fox often struggled to choose a winner because she was in such awe of the designers’ talents. In the nature challenge, for instance, she had to stop filming because she couldn’t decide between the contestants. Luckily, Fox is keen on wearing their designs whether they take home the top prize or not on “OMG Fashun.” “I did wear one of the outfits [from the show] during the press tour — the little black blazer with the underwear bottoms with the metal utensils on them, nail clippers, nail files and forks,” she said. She’s also kept in touch with many of the contestants too.

Amid the release of “OMG Fashun,” Roach made headlines for the “tenniscore” ensembles he helped architect for Zendaya and the hashtag he started — #TashiMadeMeWearIt — amid the “Challengers” press tour.

“Just to see people participate in tenniscore and going out in groups and dressing in this way, that’s the most heartwarming and incredible thing. I’m like, ‘This might be cool to give people this challenge to go out and to create these looks,’ he says.

Fox also admired how Zendaya’s looks were playful nods to the film and its themes. “It was definitely giving ‘OMG Fashun’ for sure,” she says.

With Fox’s presence on “OMG Fashun” and her affinity for daring looks, is a fashion line in her future? Not exactly.

Three people standing near the runway.

“OMG Fashun” contestants Katya Lee, Chelsea Billingsley and Bradley Callahan.

(Quantrell Colbert/E! Entertainment)

“Is that really what this planet needs — another fashion line? Like, I’d rather prop up kids that are doing it and salute them for their efforts and call it a day,” she says. Fox also would rather rely on someone else’s talents: “Why would I want to do it myself when I could have someone else do it for me?”

Should “OMG Fashun” get another season, the co-hosts already know who they’d love to see as guest judges. Roach wants John Galliano, Grace Jones, Naomi Campbell or RuPaul on. Fox, on the other hand, wants to recruit Doja Cat, Dennis Rodman, Gwen Stefani or Lil’ Kim. “I love accidental-like fashion icons,” she says. “People that didn’t really set out or try but became [them].”

Ultimately, the hope is that viewers watching will shift their perspective on fashion. Fox wants people to “dig a little deeper” and “look inward.”

Roach adds, “We’ve gotten into this culture of once you have something, you post it on social media that it has to be discarded, you can never wear it again. I challenge people to reinvent the clothes that they already have and the way they’ve worn them. If you like it, buy it. If you love it, live in it.”

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