NBC orders Simon Fuller and Nigel Lythgoe's 'Superstar Dancers'
By Christopher Rocchio, 11/17/2008
NBC has announced it's ordered Superstar Dancers of the World, a new dance-themed reality competition series from American Idol creator Simon Fuller and former Idol executive producer Nigel Lythgoe.
Billed by NBC as "equal parts sporting event, rock concert and artistic exhibition," Superstar Dancers of the World will pit skilled dancers of various genres from different countries against each other.
The eight countries currently scheduled to participate include Ireland, India, USA, Argentina, China, Russia, South Africa and Australia -- with each team being comprised of two soloists, one duo and one larger group.
Lord of the Dance star Michael Flatley has been tapped to host the series, which is being produced by 19 Entertainment with Fuller and Lythgoe serving as executive producers.
"This dance competition is very much like the Olympics," boasted NBC programming executive Craig Plestis. "The physical feats these athletes and artists pull is mind-blowing, and we're so excited to form what we hope will be the definitive dance competition to decide which nation has what it takes to be the best of the best in the world."
Lythgoe -- who also co-created Fox's So You Think You Can Dance with Fuller -- confirmed in August that he would be stepping down as Idol's executive producer after previously serving in that role for all of the Fox mega-hit's first seven seasons.
Instead, Lythgoe said he planned on devoting his time to both So You Think You Can Dance and also "a new venture with Simon Fuller" -- which has apparently come to fruition in Superstar Dancers of the World.
"This is the most challenging and exhilarating project I've ever done," said Lythgoe. "Nothing of this magnitude has ever been attempted before on television. We will bring to America different cultural styles of dancers -- each performer the best in their genre -- and the sheer mosaic of styles and energy is going to be nothing short of awe-inspiring."
Superstar Dancers of the World is currently scheduled to air early next year.