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Fox Reality to debut UK's 'There's Something About Miriam' October 31


By Christopher Rocchio, 07/25/2007 

One of the U.K.'s most controversial reality dating series is finally going to air in America.

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There's Something About Miriam, a reality dating series that set-up six unsuspecting men on dates with a transsexual and first premiered on Britain's Sky One in February 2004, is scheduled to premiere Wednesday, October 31 on Fox Reality, the Hartford Courant television critic Roger Catlin reported Monday.

Although Fox Reality had previously announced Miriam's acquisition back in May, the all-reality digital cable network hadn't disclosed when it planned to debut the series.  "I look forward to unleashing that on the American public," Fox Reality president David Lyle had teased to Daily Variety at the time.

There's Something About Miriam filmed in Ibiza in 2003.  At the start of the show, the men were presented with a lineup of beautiful women and asked to pick the one that they found most attractive. All of them selected a South American beauty named Miriam, and in typical reality dating show fashion, competed to win her affections.

However unbeknownst to the men, Miriam wasn't a woman. Instead -- similar to Jaye Davidson's role in 1994's The Crying Game film -- she was a preoperative transsexual.

At the end of the show the six suitors learned Miriam wasn't a gorgeous female, a revelation that didn't sit too well with them, especially the show's winner Tom Rooke, a then 23-year-old lifeguard and ex-ski instructor.  The six men hired the publicity-oriented U.K. law firm Skillings and sued to keep the show off the air, with the lawsuit also including claims of defamation, personal injury and conspiracy to commit sexual assault (apparently because several of them had kissed and hugged Miriam).

However the six suitors got over their claims of injury and public humiliation in return for an undisclosed cash settlement --  which various reports pegged at anywhere between $150,000 and $250,000 a person -- clearing the way for the program to debut on Sky One in late February 2004.  As part of the settlement, Brighter Pictures -- the Endemol production company subsidiary that had produced There's Something About Miriam -- also issued a public statement apologizing for "any upset" caused by the program.

There's Something About Miriam's debut on Fox Reality is scheduled to immediately follow the live finale of The Search for the Next Elvira, a new three-episode reality series that will look to hunt out a handmaiden to assist the famous "Mistress of the Dark" with her Halloween hosting duties.

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