Project Runway will move to Lifetime in Nov. for season six; NBC Universal sues to stop move

Project Runway, the show that has single-handedly defined and revived cable network Bravo in recent years, is moving to Lifetime this fall, although NBC Universal is suing to prevent the surprising move. Lifetime will air the show’s sixth season, so its fifth season would air on Bravo first, probably this summer.

The series’ producer, The Weinstein Company, and Lifetime announced the deal today, calling the “five-year deal” “a groundbreaking partnership that will move cable’s top reality series, ‘Project Runway,’ to the top network for women, Lifetime Television, beginning November 2008 with the premiere of season six,” according to a press release.

In the statement, Bob and Harvey Weinstein said, “We would like to sincerely thank NBC Universal and Bravo for all their contribution and support. Today’s announcement is a celebration of all of our success and having Lifetime’s unique cable reach will ensure that the show will continue to grow and expand in the years to come. Lifetime is one of the strongest cable networks in the industry, with great leadership and a true commitment to original programming. We are very excited for the many new opportunities that will now be provided to ‘Runway’ and its fans and look forward to premiering the sixth season in November 2008.”

NBC Universal, which owns Bravo, has sued the Weinstein Company, and its lawsuit says that the company “promised NBC that it would have an opportunity to match any offer to the rights of ‘Project Runway’ and that instead, Mr. [Harvey] Weinstein concluded a deal with Lifetime on Feb. 7, even though he continued to negotiate with NBC Universal for two more months,” The New York Times reports. Weinstein Company lawyer David Boies said in a statement, “it is always unfortunate when parties try to win in court what they have lost in the marketplace.”

The paper reports that a move was inevitable, as “one condition was that ‘Project Runway’ would have to move to a larger network. NBC Universal had promised to do so, moving it either to the USA cable network, or perhaps even its broadcast network, NBC.” And while “terms of the deal were not announced, but one executive involved in the negotiation said estimated the cost to Lifetime at over $150 million,” according to The New York Times.

“Project Runway” Hits the Catwalk and Struts Over to Lifetime [Lifetime/Weinstein press release]
NBC Goes to Court to Keep ‘Runway’ [New York Times]

Surprisingly, man not eaten alive on Eaten Alive

Eaten Alive

Discovery Channel’s happy family holiday special Eaten Alive aired Sunday, rewarding viewers for their two full hours of viewing by ensuring that they spent quality time in the company of others instead of wasting that time doing something else that might not have been as satisfying, such as buying things that have labels which accurately reflect their contents.


Winter 2015 reality TV debut schedule

winter 2015 reality TV schedule

Mark your calendars with all these upcoming reality TV show debuts, including Celebrity Apprentice, The Bachelor, and another season of MasterChef Junior, all of which kick off in early January.

There are also 20+ shows debuting in December--including the one-off return of The Sing Off. No winter break for reality TV.

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.