News Articles

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 1/24/2012 02:17:07 PM Eastern

Complete 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.

September
October