Project Runway’s move to Bravo saved the series, because Lifetime’s parent company, A+E Networks, had effectively cancelled the show by dropping its commitment to air two more seasons—and that happened back in January.
Yesterday, NBCUniversal announced it acquired the rights to the show that the Weinstein Company owned and took to Lifetime 10 years ago.
Project Runway plus future seasons of Project Runway All-Stars and Project Runway Junior were dropped by Lifetime and A+E as a result of Harvey Weinstein’s actions, which A+E said breached the agreement between the companies.
Two years ago, Lifetime renewed Project Runway for three more seasons, only one of which ultimately aired.
The cancellation of the agreement was revealed in a legal filing related to the Weinstein Company’s bankruptcy at the beginning of April. There was reporting about this last month—here’s Deadline and Variety—but I missed those stories back then.
In a “reservation of rights” filing [PDF] on April 3, A+E says that on Nov. 1, 2017, it “sent TWC a letter putting it on notice that Mr. Weinstein’s actions, which were reportedly known by TWC, constituted material breaches and defaults under the Project Runway Agreement.”
It says that, on Jan. 10, it “terminated (a) all AETN obligations with respect to any future seasons of the television program Project Runway (including Seasons 17 and 18), as well as television programs derived from Project Runway (including any seasons beyond Season 7 of Project Runway All-Stars).”