NBC has ordered a new fashion competition reality series produced by Project Runway‘s original creators, Magical Elves, on which designers will compete for a chance to launch a retail brand.
Fashion Star will debut next year and be hosted by Elle Macpherson, who has hosted Britain’s Next Top Model, and “will give 12 unknown designers the chance to win a multi-million dollar contract to launch their line in America’s largest retail stores,” according to NBC, which said “designers will be put through a variety of challenges that will push them to further develop and expand their brands.” Winning and losing designs will be available for purchase by viewers after each episode.
This sounds a lot like the first season of Bravo’s The Fashion Show–in fact, NBC calls selling winning designs online “an exciting new format twist,” but The Fashion Show for all its many, many flaws, did that first. It also sounds not at all like a series people would watch on broadcast television.
The show is executive produced by Ben Silverman, who used to run NBC, or at least, ran NBC into the ground. He talked to the New York Times about his current relationship with the network, and said that the clothes will be accessible and wearable, in part because they will get viewers by having the designers create underwear: “Women and men wearing undergarments always seems to do great.”