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ABC to debut new 'Skating with the Stars' competition on November 22


By Reality TV World staff, 10/15/2010 

ABC has announced it has ordered Skating with the Stars and will premiere the new Dancing with the Stars-like celebrity competition on Monday, November 22 at 9PM ET/PT.

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Similar to Dancing with the Stars, Skating with the Stars will pair a celebrity and world-class ice skater who will perform live and receive scores from a panel of expert judges.  Like Dancing with the Stars, the judges' scores will then be combined with home viewer votes and one couple will be eliminated each week during the show's six-episode run.

Skating with the Stars -- which will premiere immediately after Dancing with the Stars' final eleventh-season performance show -- will be produced by Dancing with the Stars' BBC Worldwide production company, which previously produced the format in the U.K. as a Christmas special in 2004.

Reports that ABC was developing an ice skating version of Dancing with the Stars had first emerged a year ago.

While Skating with the Stars represents ABC's first attempt at an ice skating version of its top-rated ballroom dancing competition, it isn't the first American network attempt.

In January 2006 -- four months after Dancing with the Stars' initial six-episode 2005 season emerged as a surprise summer hit -- Fox debuted Skating with Celebrities, a Dancing with the Stars knock-off which featured celebrities skating with professional partners. 

Actress Kristy Swanson and partner Lloyd Eisler won the seven-episode competition, which was taped in advance of broadcast and did not feature home viewer voting. 

Although its U.K. Dancing on Ice edition has continued to air annually overseas, Fox did not renew Skating with Celebrities.  Instead, the Fox show ended up being best remembered for its off-the-ice drama when Eisler's then-pregnant wife Marcia O'Brien revealed he had gotten romantically involved with Swanson during the show and blamed the affair for breaking up their marriage. 

Swanson and Eisler -- who had a child together in 2007 and wed last year -- also made headlines again when Swanson was arrested for allegedly assaulting O'Brien. The charges were later dropped.

ABC will announce Skating with the Stars' cast during Dancing with the Stars' November 2 results show.

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