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Bravo renews its 'Project Runway' reality show for a third season

By Reality TV World staff, 03/06/2006 

In an announcement that comes as little surprise, Bravo has announced that it has renewed its Emmy-nominated Project Runway reality series for a third season.

Produced by The Weinstein Company and Miramax, Project Runway currently ranks as Bravo's top-rated television series. Project Runway 2, the second season of the show that premiered back in December, will air its season finale on Wednesday, March 8 at 10PM ET/PT. As she did during its first two seasons, supermodel Heidi Klum will host Project Runway 3.

"Project Runway is a wonderful inspiration for aspiring fashion designers and the third season is sure to be filled with as much edge and excitement as the first two," said Harvey Weinstein Co-Chairman of The Weinstein Company. We couldn't have asked for a better partner than Bravo to work with on this show

"Together with The Weinstein Company we have been able to show these designers' passion for creativity and incredible talent to an ever-growing audience," added Bravo President Lauren Zalaznick. "We can't wait to get back out there and give another crop of budding designers the opportunity of a lifetime."

Already a huge hit for Bravo in its first season, Project Runway has drawn even bigger ratings in its second season. After premiering to triple the ratings of its first season premiere, Project Runway 2 continued to eclipse its previous season's ratings until the February 1, 2006 broadcast of its eighth episode surpassed the ratings of Runway's first season finale. Despite airing at 10PM, Project Runway 2 has been cable's top-rated show among the Adults 18-49 ratings demographic for each of the last seven weeks.

Three designers remain in the running to be crowned Project Runway 2's winner: Chloe Dao, Santino Rice, and Daniel Vosovic. Assuming that (unlike first season winner Jay McCarroll) the winning designer decides to accept Project Runway's prize, the winner will walk away with an ELLE magazine photo spread featuring their designs, a 2007 Saturn Sky Roadster, a mentorship from the Banana Republic Design Team, and $100,000 intended to help them launch their own clothing line.

While Bravo did not announce when it expects to broadcast Project Runway 3, the third season casting application -- also released as part of today's announcement -- would appear to hint that now that Project Runway has firmly established itself as far and away Bravo's biggest hit, the network plans to move the show from its present once-a-year schedule to the twice-a-year format typically adopted by most popular reality competition series.

According to the application, unlike its first two editions that used New York's Fall Fashion Week (an event that takes place in February) as the backdrop for their finales, the finale of Project Runway's third edition is tentatively scheduled to film at New York's Spring Fashion Week, a September event. Based on the show's previous scheduling, that would appear to indicate that Project Runway 3 will premiere sometime this coming summer (a scheduling strategy similar to the one that USA Network and The Sci Fi Channel, two of Bravo's NBC Universal sister networks, already use for their own premier original series) and result in a schedule that would still allow Bravo to broadcast a fourth Project Runway edition next winter.

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