'Nashville' on the road to NBC


USA Network's "Nashville Star" is moving to NBC.

After weeks of ramblings, NBC has picked up the country singing competition for a sixth season to launch in the summer, along with the second season of "American Gladiators."

The two unscripted shows will be cornerstones of the network's "NBC's All-American Summer" promo campaign leading into NBC Universal's coverage of the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing.

"These exciting new reality shows will be a vital part of 'NBC's All-American Summer' building up to the drama of the Beijing Olympics," NBC's reality chief Craig Plestis said. "We are thrilled to feature the powerhouse 'Gladiators' this summer, and it's a real coup to bring 'Nashville Star' to NBC."

Both "Nashville," the longest-running competition series on cable, and "Gladiators," a breakout ratings hit for NBC, hail from Reveille, the company founded by NBC topper Ben Silverman.

Silverman is exec producing "Nashville" with Howard T. Owens, Mark Koops and Sallyann Salsano.

Multi-city auditions for "Nashville" will begin in February. For the first time ever, the series will be open not just to solo artists but also to duets and singing groups. In another first for Season 6, the competition will be open to singers 16 and older.

This is the second time in the past month that NBC reached to sister cable network USA for programming. As a strike contingency, NBC recently closed a deal to repurpose USA's hit dramedies "Monk" and "Psych."