Top Chef moves to LA, returns in October, and will be hosted by Padma Lakshmi

Top Chef will return for a second season in October, Bravo announced yesterday. In addition to getting a new host, the series is moving from San Francisco to LA. Production “will commence this month in Los Angeles on thirteen episodes,” Bravo said in a press release. The show’s return “is scheduled for October 2006.”

Tom Colicchio and Gail Simmons will both return in their same roles. Replacing the thankfully fired Katie Lee Joel will be Padma Lakshmi, who is described by Bravo in a press release as “the first Indian supermodel, [an] actress and [an] award-winning writer.”

In other words, she is not famous just for being married to someone much older and more famous than she is. She also has “extensive” acting experience and has hosted shows on The Food Network and Discovery Channel, which means she probably has a personality.

Update: While I was just trying to ridicule Katie Lee Joel, I didn’t realize that Padma Lakshmi is married to someone older and more famous than she is: Salman Rushdie.

The Second Season of Bravo’s Hit Culinary Competition Series ‘Top Chef’ Begins Production in Downtown Los Angeles [Bravo press release]

The Sing-Off loses its star

Ben Folds

NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.


A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

Anna Martemucci

What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.