Exclusive: NATPE 2012: 'Bethenny' to Air in Summer Test on Fox
Fox-owned stations in New York, Los Angeles and other markets to try Warner Bros.' talker
By Paige Albiniak -- Broadcasting & Cable, 1/24/2012 2:17:07 PMComplete Coverage: NATPE 2012
Turns out rumors of Bethenny Frankel's demise – as a syndicated talk show – were premature.
This summer, select Fox Television Stations – including WNYW New York and KTTV Los Angeles – will run the show in a six-week test, said Ken Werner, president of Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution, and Frank Cicha, senior VP of programming for the Fox Television Stations.
"A year ago, we determined there was a need in the marketplace for a show that provided daytime women the opportunity to hang out with someone who understood their needs, desires and aspirations... a girlfriend," said Werner in a statement. "The research is clear that Bethenny is that person. Fox shared our vision and we have partnered with them to demonstrate to the rest of the country how compelling such a show can be."
"Bethenny is a lightning rod, and from a marketing standpoint, we love the idea of her hit reality series dovetailing into this test," said Cicha, also in a statement.
After Warner Bros.' Anderson, Twentieth's Ricki Lake and CBS Television Distribution's Jeff Probst all were renewed and sold in key markets in early November 2011, it looked like Bethenny's chances to launch were dead. Fox, however, had always shown interest in the show, and Warner Bros. kept working on a way to get the show on the air.
Frankel is best known as a Real Housewife of New York, although she first gained notice as the first runner-up on NBC's The Apprentice: Martha Stewart. Since starring on Bravo's Real Housewives, the network has spun her off into her own series, Bethenny Getting Married?, which scored the highest-rated premiere in Bravo history, and then into a second season, titled Bethenny Ever After. The show's third season will launch on Bravo on Feb. 20.
Besides her TV work, Frankel also is a businesswoman. She launched the Skinnygirl brand, which includes nutritional products, undergarments, products for face and body and the famous Skinnygirl Margarita. She's also an author, with three New York Times best-sellers under her belt, and a novel, Skinnydipping, that will be released on May 1.
"I'm absolutely thrilled to be working with Telepictures, Ellen DeGeneres and Fox in doing what I believe is the next best step in my life and my career," said Frankel in a statement. "My passion is connecting to, inspiring and being inspired by my fans. I'm ready for the challenge of this new adventure, and I'm going to tackle it like I do everything else in my life. The queen of too much information is coming to daytime."
"Bethenny is a rare talent whose sense of humor, relatability and rags-to-riches success story lend themselves to her being a natural talk show host," said Hilary Estey McLoughlin, president of Telepictures, which is the division of Warner Bros. that will produce the show. "Her ability to resonate with television viewers and her enthusiastic following is already proven and now by crossing over to daytime, Telepictures will be able to build upon that success and develop this franchise into a daytime go-to destination."
DeGeneres, who stars in her own talk show produced by Telepictures, and Frankel will both serve as executive producers.
Long time fan of Bethanny.
Please consider putting talk show on FOX in Chicago area.
We have always enjoyed her show and would love to watch her talk show.
Love Ellen's show, also!
Mary Bogart - 5/28/2012 11:26:13 PM EDT
Carla Olson - 1/24/2012 3:34:11 PM EST
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