May 01, 2012 10:21am PT by Lesley Goldberg
Naomi Campbell to Star in Oxygen Modeling Competition Series
Oxygen is getting into the modeling business.
The NBCUniversal-owned cable network has tapped Naomi Campbell to star in The Face, a reality competition revolving around teams of models going head-to-head to become the spokesperson for a national brand.
Campbell will serve as one of three supermodel coaches, responsible for molding, nurturing and transforming contestants similar to another NBCUni property, The Voice.
Campbell and the two other yet-to-be announced coaches will select their contenstants from a worldwide search before guiding them through weekly assignments.
"The Face is a fresh new series that delivers all the elements our audience craves: fashion, beauty and drama,” said Rod Aissa, senior vp original programming and development and Oxygen Media. "Oxygen has been looking for the next ideation in the modeling genre and this project delivers it."
The Face comes as the female-skewing network has committed to increasing its original programming by 50 percent and joins the network that has been home to Tyra Banks' America's Next Top Model.
For her part, the series marks Campbell's latest small-screen gig, following guest spots on scripted series including The Cosby Show and New York Undercover.
The Face, which does not yet have a premiere date, hails from Shine Media, producers of The Biggest Loser and Tabatha Takes Over, among other properties.
The Oxygen order comes 10 days after the CW's flagship Top Model franchise saw the departure of three longtime faces in Nigel Barker, Jay Manuel and J. Alexander, who have been with the fashion series since its early days.
ANTM has been a valuable unscripted property for the network that has struggled with the reality genre. The series premiered earlier this year to a dismal 0.6 demo rating, down 45 percent year-over-year.