Thursday, April 2, 2009

"Project Runway" will be back on the air this summer

In fashion you're either in or you're out, and as far as "Project Runway" is concerned, Bravo is now out.

Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn and the rest of the "Project Runway" gang are sashaying away from Bravo to Lifetime, now that the lawsuit between NBC Universal and the Weinstein Co. has been settled.

"NBC Universal, the Weinstein Company and Lifetime have resolved their disputes," reads a statement from NBC Universal.

"The Weinstein Company will pay NBCU for the right to move Project Runway to Lifetime. All of the parties are pleased with the outcome."

The show's sixth season — which has already been taped — will air this summer on the female-centric channel, said Lifetime CEO Andrea Wong.

In a statement, Wong called Lifetime "the perfect home" for the series. She said the network was "thrilled" to proceed with Klum, mentor Tim Gunn, and judges Nina Garcia and Michael Kors. "We're thrilled to be launching our relationship with Lifetime with this groundbreaking cable deal that includes the next 5 years of ‘Project Runway,’ our new spinoff show ‘Models of the Runway’ and the development of ‘Project Pygmalion,’ along with a package of our movies. With these upcoming shows and the success of our new series ‘The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency’ on HBO, we are very excited about the continued growth of The Weinstein Co’s television division. We are also looking forward to working with NBC Universal on the upcoming theatrical release of ‘Inglourious Basterds’ and the continued development of other projects together.”

Without question, Project Runway is Bravo's biggest hit. The sew-off show, which debuted in 2004, became water cooler TV in part because of its intense challenges and creative contestants with strong personalities that rivaled their daring designs.

The show jump-started Bravo's evolution to the reality brand behind such addictive fare as "Top Chef," "Millionaire Matchmaker" and the "Real Housewives" franchise. Bravo will air its new sartorial series "The Fashion Show," with judges Isaac Mizrahi and Kelly Rowland, on May 7.

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