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NEW YORK – The Style Network has picked up three new series – including a spinoff of its top rated Jerseylicious – and put several projects in development. The network has ordered ten episodes of Jerseylicious spinoff Glam Fairy, which follows makeup artist Alexa Prisco as she establishes her own business. The series, from Endemol USA, will premiere in October. Style has also ordered a multi-part spinoff of Jeannie Mai’s How Do I Look? set for September. The Search for the Worst Dressed in America will have Mai scouring the country for women in dire need of a fashion intervention. The winner will be ambushed and then carted off to Hollywood for a head-to-toe makeover. And Style heads to Texas for its next original series Big Rich Texas, which bows in July and follows five wealthy Dallas women and their pampered daughters.
The announcement came Tuesday morning at a press breakfast presided over by Salaam Coleman Smith, president of Style. Coleman Smith also introduced a new marketing campaign aimed at acculturated Hispanic women, or the “Latino Modern Mom,” and also committed to expanding the presence of Hispanics on the network.
Of the 10 series in development for the 2011-12 season, several mine traditional Style themes of advice, how-to and self-improvement. But there are also some departures. Birth Moms is a docuseries about Orem, Utah’s Adoption Center of Choice, a residential home where expectant mothers complete their pregnancies before giving up their babies for adoption. Single with 7 follows 29 year-old Yesi Ortiz, an afternoon DJ at L.A.’s Power 106 FM and a foster mom to her seven nieces and nephews. There is also a weekly topical half-hour, like The View, hosted by Adrianne Curry, Vivica A. Fox, Nick Verreos and Bachelorette Ali Fedotowsky; a family docusoap called The Riveras, about a Queens, New York family who own two neighborhood dance studios; and Maureen Hancock’s Ghost Town, about a Boston medium.
Coleman Smith also said that the network is hoping to take its anti-obesity town hall “Fight with Style,” planned for Saturday in St. Louis, to additional cities. This weekend’s event features Biggest Loser host Alison Sweeney, students from Style’s Too Far for Fifteen: Fighting Back as well as Ruby Gettinger, star of Style’s eponymous docuseries. The finale of the current season of Ruby, which chronicles Gettinger’s effort to lose weight, will feature an appearance from Rosie O’Donnell, who has struggled with the same issues.
“We got a lot of questions from the press [when Ruby premiered],” said Coleman Smith. “How does a 700-pound woman fit on the Style Network? We knew we couldn’t remain a size 2 in a size 14 world.”
The upfront marked Style’s first presentation as part of the NBC Universal portfolio of Lauren Zalaznick, chairman of NBCUni entertainment & digital networks and integrated media.
Coleman Smith noted that she’s worked for Zalaznick for all of “six weeks,” but that she’s eager to implement the Zalaznick playbook – which has spurred growth and brand-definition at Bravo and Oxygen. Coleman Smith took a page out of that playbook this morning: coining the term “shoptimist” to describe the Style viewer; “confident spenders” and “mall maniacs.”
“In many many ways I could not be more excited to welcome Style into the family. The core programming on Style resonates with our female, upscale audience,” said Zalaznick, adding that the mission is to “build on the experience and energy of the Style Network” establishing “true independence” but also “support across the [NBCUni] division.”
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