12:30pm PT by Michael O'Connell
Steve Harvey Reviving 'Showtime at the Apollo' With Fox Special
Steve Harvey is extending his seemingly infinite reach to another TV project. The comedian, talk show personality, game show host and pageant emcee will host Fox's revival of Showtime at the Apollo this December.
A new spin on the classic talent showcase, Showtime at the Apollo will run as both a two-hour event on Dec. 5 and as another one-hour special in early 2017. It extends Harvey's current relationship with Fox past his hosting duties on Miss Universe (not that anyone could forget) and comes in addition to his involvement on NBC's Little Big Shots, its upcoming spinoff, ABC's Celebrity Family Feud, syndicated Family Feud and, naturally, daytime's Steve Harvey show.
“I’m excited to be going back home to the Apollo to celebrate the history of this great theater,” Harvey, who got his comedy start performing at the iconic Harlem venue, said Wednesday in a statement. “I have great memories from my time there, and this is going to be a homecoming party that you won't want to miss.”
The original Showtime at the Apollo, a syndicated variety show, ended its run in 2008 after 1,093 episodes.
The event will include a roster of yet-to-be-announced stars, as well as elements of the Apollo's famed amateur night. James Brown, Stevie Wonder, Lauryn Hill, Michael Jackson and The Jackson Five and D’Angelo are just a few of the notables who've graced the stage.
“Since its inception in 1934, the world’s original talent competition — Amateur Night at the Night — was, and continues to be, a primary source for discovering new talent and spotlighting up-and-coming artists," said Apollo Theater CEO Jonelle Procope, also an executive producer on the project. "That tradition was continued with the successful 21-year run of the Showtime at the Apollo television program. We’re proud to continue to produce our live, weekly show, and are equally excited to be partnering with Fox to produce this Showtime at the Apollo special and to bring the Apollo experience back to television."
As the broadcast networks lean more heavily on live events, December has become an even more favored month for specials of this nature. Last year, Fox tried out a holiday special with Empire stars Taraji P. Henson and Terrence Howard.
“The Apollo Theater played a crucial role in so many of this nation’s most talented artists, including Steve, and we couldn’t be happier to have him lead us back to this legendary venue,” added Fox entertainment president David Madden. “We’re sure this will be a fantastic night of entertainment.”