HBO Max greenlights dog-grooming competition show; Jess Rona leads the panel of judges

April 17, 2020

Jess Rona (Photo courtesy of HBO Max)

HBO Max, the upcoming direct-to-consumer offering from WarnerMedia set to launch in the spring of 2020, announced today the greenlight of Hot Dog (working title), from Jax Media and Making It’s Nicolle Yaron. The twelve-episode, half-hour series features three dog groomers facing off in a full head-to-tail creative competition showcasing canine breeds of all kinds.

Inspired by the social platforms and coffee table book from celebrity dog grooming expert Jess Rona, each episode will include imaginative challenges and out of the box themes meant to spotlight the best looks for man’s best friend. Featuring comedic commentary from celebrity guests and a host, Rona will lead the judging panel with the Best in Show winner walking away with a cash prize and first place rosette.

Jess Rona built a following online with her signature slo-motion blow dry videos and serves as the dog grooming artist to many celebrity dogs. In addition to grooming, she is the author of Groomed, the director of Tegan and Sarah’s Closer video, and has appeared on Drunk History and New Girl.

“Jess Rona has made a name for herself as dog groomer-to-the stars and it is so fun to be able to bring her incredibly successful online brand and business to life in this way, ” said Jennifer O’Connell, executive vice president of original non-fiction and kids programming for HBO Max. “Expect pure escapism that the whole family can watch together and root for their favorite pooch with the most fabulous and creative trans-fur-mations.”

Hot Dog is a comedy competition series from JAX Media as they continue to expand their slate into the unscripted space.

“We are very excited to work with Nicolle, Jess and HBO Max on this very important project. There’s no better time to watch a dog get a bath than now,” says JAX Media’s partners Tony Hernandez, Lilly Burns, Brooke Posch and John Skidmore.

The series will be executive produced by Jax Media’s Tony Hernandez, Brooke Posch and Séamus Murphy-Mitchell along with Making It’s Nicolle Yaron and Jess Rona. Abi McCarthy has been tapped as showrunner.

“Haute Dog” (Photo by John P. Johnson/HBO Max)

September 16, 2020 UPDATE:

“Haute Dog,” HBO Max’s head-to-tail dog grooming creative competition series showcasing canine breeds of all kinds is launching with its first six episodes on Thursday, September 24, 2020. Emmy nominee Robin Thede (“A Black Lady Sketch Show”) is joining celebrity dog groomer Jess Rona to judge the imaginative challenges and out of the box themes meant to spotlight the best looks for man’s best friend. These doggy makeover wizards compete to turn the K-9s into K-10s. Matt Rogers (“Las Culturistas”) serves as the show’s host.

The most adorable competition series ever created, each episode features three dog groomers facing off over two rounds. Rogers provides comedic commentary as Rona leads the judging panel with her extensive knowledge of breeds and proper grooming techniques, with Thede serving as “haute” expert evaluating the outrageous and jaw-dropping transformations. The judges determine who wins Best in Show, with the lucky groomer walking away with $10,000 and a first place rosette. Rona’s coffee table book Groomed and social platforms, including her signature slo-motion blow dry videos, inspired the series.

Jax Media completed production of the series over four weeks this summer in Simi Valley following full union guidelines and COVID protocols, with zero positive results from cast, crew and producers. Tests were conducted regularly across four weeks of production from load in to strike.

About HBO Max
HBO Max is WarnerMedia’s direct-to-consumer offering debuting in spring 2020. With 10,000 hours of curated premium content anticipated at launch, HBO Max will offer powerhouse programming for everyone in the home, bringing together HBO, a robust slate of new original series, key third-party licensed programs and movies, and fan favorites from Warner Media’s rich library including Warner Bros., New Line, DC, CNN, TNT, TBS, truTV, Turner Classic Movies, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, Rooster Teeth, Looney Tunes and more. Sign up for updates at HBOMax.com.

About WarnerMedia
WarnerMedia is a leading media and entertainment company that creates and distributes premium and popular content from a diverse array of talented storytellers and journalists to global audiences through its consumer brands including: HBO, HBO Now, HBO Max, Warner Bros., TNT, TBS, truTV, CNN, DC, New Line, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Turner Classic Movies and others. WarnerMedia is part of AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T).

About JAX MEDIA
Founded in 2011, JAX Media is a television and film production juggernaut run by Partners Tony Hernandez, Lilly Burns, John Skidmore and Brooke Posch with offices in New York, Los Angeles and London. Jax Media has created a production model that allows talent to maintain control of their content and the results have been answered with awards and critical acclaim. As a company, they provide comprehensive production from development through post with a highly experience in-house production team who expertly implements the unique Jax Media model that has proven itself time and time again as a success for studios, networks and creatives alike. Jax Media currently has 11 shows in production and was nominated for 18 Emmy Awards for the 2018-2019 TV season alone

Amazon Prime Video series ‘Making the Cut,’ starring Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn, announces Season 1 contestants

February 24, 2020

The following is a press release from Amazon Prime Video:

Amazon Original series “Making the Cut” reveals its first official look at the upcoming season, hosted and executive produced by Heidi Klum & Tim Gunn. The series will premiere on Prime Video on Friday March 27, 2020. The 10-episode fashion competition series, which brings together a diverse group of 12 talented entrepreneurs and designers, will premiere two new episodes each week, culminating in an epic finale on April 24, 2020.

In this first-ever global and instantly shoppable series, limited editions of the winning look from each episode will be available for purchase exclusively on Amazon in the “Making the Cut” store. During the course of the season, those who do not “make the cut” will be eliminated, with the winning designer from the finale receiving one million dollars to invest in their brand and the opportunity to create an exclusive line available on Amazon.

The dozen designers featured on “Making the Cut” will visit three of the world’s fashion capitals – New York, Paris, and Toyko – and face challenges and assignments that will test not only their design skills but also their ability to run all aspects of a business. Judging their looks and industry acumen are some of fashion’s most recognizable and influential names, including Naomi Campbell, Nicole Richie, Joseph Altuzarra, Carine Roitfeld and Chiara Ferragni. The series is executive produced by Sara Rea, Page Feldman, Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn and Jennifer Love, directed by Ramy Romany and produced by Amazon Studios and SKR Productions.

As previously announced, the 12 designers competing for an opportunity of a lifetime are:

Sander Bos, 24, Hasselt, Belgium: Featuring avant-garde inspired looks, Bos is a young designer who runs his namesake line. Raised in a small town in Belgium, he is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp and is eager to make his mark on a global scale.

Rinat Brodach, 35, New York City: Brodach was a fan of fashion from an early age while growing up in in Israel and later came to the US to study design. Her eponymous line features a minimalist chic, gender-free aesthetic, reflecting her own straightforward personality. She recently dressed Billy Porter for the Critics’ Choice Awards and her designs have also been worn by Laverne Cox and Adam Lambert.

Ji Won Choi, 26, New York City: The Parson graduate is a designer of elevated, active streetwear that she sells under her namesake brand and has collaborated with Adidas, with pieces worn by Beyoncé and Kendall Jenner. Born in Seoul, South Korea, raised in Oklahoma, and educated in New York City and Paris, her work is a reflection of how Choi sees herself in the world.

Jasmine Chong, 31, New York City: Born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Chong is the owner of her self-titled feminine ready-to-wear line, has previously shown at NYFW and her line has been featured in a number of fashion magazines. Inspired by her seamstress grandmother and her fashion designer mother, she is focused on creating beautiful clothing that appeals to all body types.

Jonny Cota, 35, Los Angeles, CA: The self-taught owner of the elevated streetwear brand Skingraft, Cota produces two men’s and women’s ready-to-wear collections yearly and has shown five times at New York Fashion Week. In addition, he has dressed celebrities including Nicki Minaj and Beyoncé.

Martha Gottwald, 28, Richmond, VA: The Louisiana native and mother of two is owner of the womenswear brand Neubyrne and has been featured in British Vogue and shown at NYFW. Like Gottwald herself, Neubyrne embraces color and whimsicality. The survivor of a near fatal car accident that taught her about strength and endurance, she is a relatively new designer who was inspired by artisans she met in Singapore.

Troy Hul Arnold, 34, New York City: An adjunct professor at Parsons, Hul Arnold was born in Trinidad and Tobago before coming to the US as a child. His brand, Hul Arnold, features minimalist, avant-garde menswear inspired looks for women; one of his designs was worn by Sarah Jessica Parker on Glee. Hul Arnold takes an artisanal approach to his fashion, and he refers to his pieces as functional sculptures.

Joshua Hupper, 38, Shanghai, China: Founder of BABYGHOST, a wildly successful e-commerce fashion brand based in China, Hupper’s designs have been featured in Vogue and on runways around the world. His line features youthful, feminine ready-to-wear fashions for the “mischievous girl.” Originally from Columbus, Ohio, Hupper’s talents were shaped by his artistic upbringing and internships with Diane Von Furstenburg and Thakoon.

Esther Perbandt, 43, Berlin, Germany: Founder and namesake Esther Perbandt was born and bred in Berlin, toughened up in Moscow and polished in Paris. Owner of her eponymous line, which features edgy, menswear-inspired separates, Perbandt has created more than 30 collections over the brand’s 15 year history and has been running her highly successful boutique in Berlin for ten years. As an artist, she has also collaborated on countless music, film and theatre projects.

Will Riddle, 31, New York City: Riddle’s design skills, featuring a modern take on old glamour, have led to a series of impressive jobs, including Atelier Director at Oscar de la Renta, 3.1 Philip Lim, and now men’s designer at Kith – a far journey from growing up in a trailer park in Ohio. With an impressive resume under his belt, Riddle is ready to start his own label.

Sabato Russo, 64, Milan, Italy: A seasoned designer with a 25-year career in the industry, Russo is owner of the brand Satorial Monk, which focuses on high end simplicity. A former model who is able to speak four languages, Russo has a global point of view that is reflected in his sophisticated, timeless looks. Russo is currently working on his “Made in Italy” line entitled Sabato Russo.

Megan Smith, 38, Los Angeles, CA: Born and raised in Kansas City, KS, Smith first discovered her love of fashion design while creating clothes for her Barbie dolls. After designing private label for several major bands and retailers, Smith branched out and launched her own line “Megan Renee.” The response to her first runway show during Los Angeles Fashion Week was so overwhelming, she launched her online boutique to sell her collections to customers worldwide. Her line features feminine, 70’s inspired cocktail attire.

Making The Cut Social Handles: #MakingtheCut
Twitter: @MakingtheCutTV
Instagram: @MakingtheCutTV

Amazon Prime Video Social Handles:
Twitter: @PrimeVideo
Instagram: @AmazonPrimeVideo

Amazon Fashion Social Handles:
Instagram & Twitter: @AmazonFashion

Making The Cut Talent & Judge Social Handles:
Heidi Klum: Twitter and Instagram @HeidiKlum
Tim Gunn: Twitter and Instagram @TimGunn
Naomi Campbell: Twitter @NaomiCampbell and Instagram @Naomi
Nicole Richie: Twitter and Instagram @NicoleRichie
Carine Roitfeld: Instagram @CarineRoitfeld
Joseph Altuzarra: Instagram @JosephAltuzarra
Chiara Ferragni: Twitter and Instagram @ChiaraFerragni

Food Network debuts ‘Tournament of Champions,’ hosted by Guy Fieri

January 23, 2020

Guy Fieri (Photo courtesy of Food Network)

The following is a press release from Food Network:

It’s madness on Food Network this March as Guy Fieri hosts and executive produces an all new culinary competition where 16 of the nation’s most celebrated chefs face-off on “Tournament of Champions,” premiering on Wednesday, March 4, 2020, at 10pm with a supersized 90-minute episode stuffed with edge-of-your-seat action. During the five-part tournament, the chefs’ skills will be pushed to the limit, as they go head-to-head in a single elimination bracket-style competition, where a randomizer machine determines the protein, produce, equipment, cooking style, and time for each of the cook-offs. The pressure is on and emotions are high throughout this unpredictable tournament, as the elite chefs enter this blind competition not knowing who their opponents will be, or what cooking challenges they will face. The intensity increases in each sudden-death each round of the tournament as the coveted spots decrease from 16 to eight in the second round, then to four, until there are only two chefs in the final round.

This past October, Guy issued a call to action on social media for fans to nominate their favorite chefs they thought deserved to earn a coveted challenger spot for an East Coast vs. West Coast tournament, and the fans responded. The final chefs representing the East Coast are: Maneet Chauhan, Rocco DiSpirito, Alex Guarnaschelli, Elizabeth Falkner, Darnell Ferguson, Amanda Freitag, Marc Murphy and Christian Petroni. The chefs showing off their chops from the West Coast are: Richard Blais, Eric Greenspan, Antonia Lofaso, Beau Macmillan, Jet Tila, Marcel Vigneron, Michael Voltaggio, and Brooke Williamson. Today, the seeds and first-round brackets of the tournament will be unveiled on Food Network’s Twitter page. Beginning on February 14th, for the first time ever, viewers will be able to build their own bracket for a chance to track their scores as the competition unfolds, unlock exclusive content, and win prizes throughout the season.

“‘Tournament of Champions’ showcases cooking as a sport with difficult sudden-death challenges and unexpected match ups as each round is determined by the course of the competition,” said Courtney White, President, Food Network. “Our cameras rolled on all the action, from the competition floor to back stage and behind the scenes, capturing the tension, deliberation, elation and frustration as bracket victors moved on while others faced elimination.”

“The NFL has the Super Bowl, MLB has the World Series, NBA has The Finals. And now Food Network has ‘Tournament of Champions’ – the ultimate culinary championship to establish once and for all, who rules America’s kitchen,” said Guy Fieri.

It’s a high stakes competition unlike any before. Simon Majumdar and Justin Warner deliver real time play-by-play as all the action unfolds in front of a live audience and continues backstage while the competitors mull over their work while listening in on the judges’ deliberation. Deciding who advances in each round is a rotating panel of expert judges including, Michelle Bernstein, Traci Des Jardin, Marcus Samuelsson, Nancy Silverton, Curtis Stone, Ming Tsai, and Jonathan Waxman. Unexpected challenges, major upsets and surprises fill this tournament, which concludes with an extended 90-minute episode on Wednesday, April 1st at 10pm. Only one chef will emerge as the champion!

Fans can head to www.FoodNetwork.com/TournamentOfChampions for videos with Guy, taste test challenges with the judges and food games with competitors, as well as exclusive Q&As. From February 14 – March 1, viewers can head to Food Network’s Twitter to complete their own bracket for the chance to win unique prizes, and use #TournamentOfChampions to track the action week-to-week.

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FOOD NETWORK (www.foodnetwork.com) is a unique lifestyle network, website and magazine that connects viewers to the power and joy of food. The network strives to be viewers’ best friend in food and is committed to leading by teaching, inspiring, empowering and entertaining through its talent and expertise. Food Network is distributed to nearly 100 million U.S. households and draws over 46 million unique web users monthly. Since launching in 2009, Food Network Magazine’s rate base has grown 13 times and is the No. 2 best-selling monthly magazine on the newsstand, with 13.5 million readers. Food Network is owned by Discovery, Inc., a global leader in real life entertainment spanning 220 countries and territories; the portfolio also includes Discovery Channel, HGTV, TLC, Investigation Discovery, and OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network.

Food Network announces ‘Halloween Cake-Off’ series hosted by Duff Goldman

July 30, 2019

The following is a press release from Food Network:

"Halloween Cake-Off"
“Halloween Cake-Off” stars, pictured from left to right: judge Pichet Ong, host Duff Goldman and judge Waylynn Lucas. (Photo courtesy of Food Network)
Halloween Cake-Off- Premiering Monday, September 30th at 10pm-
SERIES PREMIERE
In Halloween Cake-Off, Duff Goldman hosts talented bakers from around the country for this unconventional baking and design competition where flavor is only the tip of the icing. In each episode, four bakers are pitted against each other to find out who is best at baking the most ghoulish, outlandish, spookiest Halloween cakes. The competitors create over the top, edible works of art that transform in spooky and mystifying ways in pursuit of winning the Cake-Off.
Online, get to know the judges and browse photos from the competition. Follow #HalloweenCakeOff on our social channels for wild video highlights from the competition and to watch Duff and the judges take on spine-tingling challenges and create fun Halloween treats.
FOOD NETWORK (www.foodnetwork.com) is a unique lifestyle network, website and magazine that connects viewers to the power and joy of food. The network strives to be viewers’ best friend in food and is committed to leading by teaching, inspiring, empowering and entertaining through its talent and expertise. Food Network is distributed to nearly 100 million U.S. households and draws over 46 million unique web users monthly. Since launching in 2009, Food Network Magazine’s rate base has grown 13 times and is the No. 2 best-selling monthly magazine on the newsstand, with 13.5 million readers. Food Network is owned by Discovery, Inc., a global leader in real life entertainment spanning 220 countries and territories; the portfolio also includes Discovery Channel, HGTV, TLC, Investigation Discovery, and OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network.

Hulu announces new culinary series hosted by Padma Lakshmi

July 26, 2019

Padma Lakshmi
Padma Lakshmi (Photo by Charles Sykes/Bravo)

“Top Chef” host/judge Padma Lakshmi is getting a new culinary series on Hulu. The show’s title and premiere date are to be announced. She will continue to be on “Top Chef,” which is televised in the U.S. on Bravo. The announcement about Lakshmi’s Hulu series was made during 2019 Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour. Here is what a Hulu press release said about the show:

The Untitled Padma Lakshmi Series is a living cookbook made up more from people and culture than recipes. Curated by Emmy-nominated host and author Padma Lakshmi (“Top Chef”), the series embraces culinary traditions from the first Americans to the latest arrivals alongside Padma’s perspectives and personal connection to each story. Filmed around the country, each episode starts with a single dish that represents and connects to a community’s history and traditions, and explores the evolution of that immigrant community through that cuisine. From family recipes and street food to high-end restaurants, each dish explored is a symbol of a unique journey and story that provides viewers a window into where communities came from and the tale of how they set roots in America. In the hands of different families and waves of immigration, an organic evolution emerges between traditional recipes and new approaches, different perspectives and emotions, all captured through Padma’s eyes.

Each 30-minute episode follows Padma as she learns, immerses and celebrates communities from around the world that have taken root in America, changed it and been changed by it. The 10-episode series is produced by Part2 Pictures.

Amazon Prime Video announces fashion-competition series ‘Making the Cut,’ hosted Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn

June 26, 2019

by Carla Hay

Tim Gunn and Heidi Klum (Photo courtesy of Lifetime)

Amazon Prime Video has announced details of its fashion-competition show starring Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn, the Emmy-winning former hosts of “Project Runway.” The show is called “Making the Cut,” and it will premiere sometime in 2020.  British supermodel Naomi Campbell, fashionista Nicole Richie, journalist Carine Roitfeld and fashion designer Joseph Altuzarra will be judges or guest judges on the show, which began auditioning contestants in January 2019. There will be 12 contestants (whose identities are to be announced) on the first season of “Making the Cut,” according to an Amazon Prime Video press release.

The executive producers of “Making the Cut” are Klum, Gunn, Sara Rea, Page Feldman and Jennifer Love. The show’s production company is SKR Productions.

The show’s grand prize has not yet been announced, but designs that win a challenge in each episode will be available for purchase on Amazon. The grand prize will also likely include some kind of deal where Amazon will sell the clothes of the winning designer.

“Making the Cut” joins a growing list of fashion-competition shows for contestants who are designers. Gunn and Klum were part of the original “Project Runway” team when the show debuted in 2004, and the duo left in 2017.

The “Project Runway” reboot in 2019 included the show moving from Lifetime back to Bravo (the show’s original network) and an almost complete recasting of the show’s stars. Karlie Kloss is now the host of “Project Runway,” which added mentor Christian Siriano (a former “Project Runway” winner) and new judges Brandon Maxwell (fashion designer) and journalist Elaine Welteroth. Nina Garcia, who has been a judge on “Project Runway” since the beginning, has remained with the show during its numerous changes.

Netflix also has a fashion-competition series: “Next in Fashion,” hosted by fashion expert Tan France (of “Queer Eye” fame) and model Alexa Chung. There will be a rotating group of guest judges. Elizabeth Stewart and Eva Chen are the guest judges announced so far. The premiere date for “Next in Fashion” is to be announced.

 

National Geographic announces food-and-travel show ‘Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted’

June 20, 2019

The following is a press release from National Geographic:

Gordon Ramsay is taking food as far as it can go in National Geographic’s new series Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted, premiering Sunday, July 21, at 10/9c. The multi-Michelin-star chef and Ironman athlete embarks on a new exhilarating adventure around the globe.

From Peru, Laos and Morocco to Hawaii, Alaska and New Zealand, Ramsay will be roaring through valleys, diving into oceans, hiking through forests and scaling mountains in his relentless pursuit of culinary inspiration. Food and adventure programming is familiar ground for Ramsay, whose 2010 U.K. series for Channel 4, “Gordon’s Great Escapes,” saw the venerable chef explore the food culture of India and Southeast Asia.

Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted follows Ramsay as he meets with indigenous people around the globe to learn about the cultures, dishes and flavors unique to each location. Every ingredient he harvests and dish he tastes will inspire a new recipe from scratch, created to represent the heart of that culture. Each episode concludes with Ramsay challenging himself with a local food legend by his side – putting his newfound skills to the test as they cook a feast together for the natives. For Ramsay, food is the gateway to culture, and every adventure is a portal into the soul of the people and place.

“It’s been an amazing journey traveling off the beaten path with National Geographic and connecting with locals to learn and share incredible stories of unique traditions, delicacies and the extreme lengths it takes to harvest native ingredients,” said Ramsay. “I’ve learned way more filming this series than I have in the last 10 years.”

Among the adventures – culinary and otherwise – that Ramsay will take in the premiere season include:

· Trekking through a dense jungle in Laos to sample weaver ant eggs and diving through dangerous waters on the hunt for snails and giant water bugs

· Hunting for eels with his bare hands using traditional Maori techniques with a local fisherman by his side in New Zealand

· Working with local foragers to harvest Maui’s deadliest catch with homemade tools and spearfishing with legendary free diver Kimi Werner in Hawaii

· Climbing a sheer rock face during a snowstorm with a local forager to harvest native herbs in Alaska

· Rappelling down a raging waterfall to meet with local mushroom hunters in Morocco

· Hanging off a cliff in pursuit of cactus worms – a delicacy in Peru

The series will also air globally in 172 countries and 43 languages. Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted is produced by Studio Ramsay. Additional episodes of the series have already been ordered ahead of the summer premiere, with production set to resume this fall.

The summer episodes include:

Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted – Peru’s Sacred Valley

Sunday, July 21, at 10/9c

Chef Gordon Ramsay travels by motorbike through Peru’s Sacred Valley of the Incas to discover traditional high-altitude cuisine. Immersing himself in local culture, he scales cliffs; fishes in high-altitude lakes; and samples local delicacies like fried worms, rare multicolored potatoes and guinea pig before putting his newfound skills to the test with legendary local chef Virgilio Martinez.

Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted – New Zealand’s Rugged South

Sunday, July 28, at 10/9c

Chef Gordon Ramsay journeys to the remote corners of southern New Zealand to unlock the secrets of traditional Maori cuisine. From the locals, he learns how to catch eels with his bare hands, free dives for prized Paua shellfish and forages for unique Kiwi ingredients before putting his new skills to the test at a Maori feast with up-and-coming chef Monique Fiso.

Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted – The Mountains of Morocco

Sunday, Aug. 4, at 10/9c

Chef Gordon Ramsay travels to Morocco, North Africa, where he embarks on an adventure deep in the Middle Atlas Mountains to understand ancient Berber cuisine. Learning from the locals, he rappels over a waterfall to meet mushroom hunters, milks a camel and experiences the life of the Berber people. He puts his new skills to the test, cooking a feast with chef Najat Kaanache to celebrate Berber New Year.

Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted – Hawaii’s Hana Coast

Sunday, Aug. 11, at 10/9c

Chef Gordon Ramsay travels to Maui, Hawaii, to explore the exotic ingredients of Hawaiian cuisine. In torrential rain, he travels along the treacherous Hana Highway. From the locals, he learns how to hunt deer with a bow, produce Hawaiian taro and spearfish with legendary free diver Kimi Werner. Gordon tests his knowledge at a feast with top Hawaiian chef Sheldon Simeon.

Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted – The Mighty Mekong of Laos

Sunday, Aug. 18, at 10/9c

Chef Gordon Ramsay travels to Laos, where he takes on a rapid stretch of white water, kayaking down the Mekong in search of culinary inspiration. Learning from the locals, he treks through dense jungle to sample eggs of the aggressive weaver ant, dives for freshwater snails and hunts for giant water bugs. Using his newly acquired skills, he cooks a banquet for monks at the local temple.

Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted – Alaska’s Panhandle

Sunday, Aug. 25 at 10/9c

Chef Gordon Ramsay journeys to the rugged Alaskan Panhandle to learn survival skills and discover Alaskan cuisine. On his adventure, he learns how to cook seal with a native Tlingit elder, climbs a sheer rock face in a snowstorm and goes grouse hunting before putting his newfound knowledge to the test at a feast with legendary local chef Lionel Uddipa.

Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted is produced by Studio Ramsay for National Geographic. For Studio Ramsay, executive producers are Gordon Ramsay, Elvia Van Es Olivia, Helen Cooke, Lisa Edwards and Jon Kroll. For National Geographic, executive producer is Betsy Forhan, vice president of production is Kevin Tao Mohs, and president of original programming and production is Geoff Daniels.

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About National Geographic Partners LLC

National Geographic Partners LLC (NGP), a joint venture between the National Geographic Society and Disney, is committed to bringing the world premium science, adventure and exploration content across an unrivaled portfolio of media assets. NGP combines the global National Geographic television channels (National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo WILD, Nat Geo MUNDO, Nat Geo PEOPLE) with National Geographic’s media and consumer-oriented assets, including National Geographic magazines; National Geographic studios; related digital and social media platforms; books; maps; children’s media; and ancillary activities that include travel, global experiences and events, archival sales, licensing and e-commerce businesses. Furthering knowledge and understanding of our world has been the core purpose of National Geographic for 131 years, and now we are committed to going deeper, pushing boundaries, going further for our consumers … and reaching millions of people around the world in 172 countries and 43 languages every month as we do it. NGP returns 27 percent of our proceeds to the nonprofit National Geographic Society to fund work in the areas of science, exploration, conservation and education. For more information visit natgeotv.com or nationalgeographic.com, or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

About Gordon Ramsay/Studio Ramsay

Renowned for highly successful and award-winning original programming, Emmy-nominated, multi-Michelin-star chef Gordon Ramsay produces TV shows on both sides of the Atlantic that are seen by audiences worldwide, including his Fox shows “The F Word With Gordon Ramsay,” “Gordon’s Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back,” “MasterChef,” “MasterChef Junior,” “Hell’s Kitchen” and “MasterChef Celebrity Showdown,” as well as Bravo’s “Best New Restaurant” and Food Network’s competition series “Food Court Wars.” In the U.K., he’s produced “Gordon Ramsay Behind Bars” and “Gordon’s Great Escape” for Channel 4; food biography and nostalgia series “My Kitchen” for UKTV’s Good Food Channel; two instructional cookery series, “Ultimate Home Cooking” and “Ultimate Cookery Course,” for Channel 4; and the first two seasons of “Matilda and the Ramsay Bunch,” all under his One Potato Two Potato banner. The next-generation multimedia production company Studio Ramsay was founded in 2016 by Ramsay and has a joint venture with All3Media to develop and produce both unscripted and scripted television shows, creating new formats and innovative programming that includes a scripted arm and development of new talent on a global front. Studio Ramsay’s first production was the live series “The F Word With Gordon Ramsay,” which premiered in the U.S. on Fox, and its second Fox series, “Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back,” ranks as television’s No. 1 cooking show this season among A18-49 and total viewers. National Geographic Channel recently announced the pick-up of a second season of Studio Ramsay’s Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted ahead of the shows’ summer premiere. Production is set to resume this fall. Across the pond, Studio Ramsay produces the wildly successful, and BAFTA-nominated, “Gordon, Gino and Fred’s Road Trip” for ITV and the Channel 4 Series “Born Famous,” which is slated for release this summer. Studio Ramsay also currently has shows in production for the BBC and other top U.K. broadcasters. Its digital arm has launched its own successful interview series called “Scrambled” and produced content for National Geographic and its various properties. Its first daytime cooking series, “Culinary Genius,” premiered on ITV in the U.K. and was syndicated on Fox stations in the U.S. Ramsay’s documentary series, “Gordon on Cocaine,” premiered on ITV to critical acclaim. “Matilda and the Ramsay Bunch,” starring Tilly Ramsay for U.K. children’s channel CBBC, is also produced by Studio Ramsay. For more information, please visit www.gordonramsay.com or follow Gordon Ramsay on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Food Network debuts ‘Cupcake Championship’ series

May 30, 2019

Amirah Kassem (guest judge), Nacho Aguirre (guest judge), Kardea Brown (host) and Maureen McCormick (judge) in “Cupcake Championship” (Photo courtesy of Food Network)

The following is a press release from Food Network:

Food Network showcases the country’s most creative cupcake makers this summer in the new five-episode series Cupcake Championship, premiering Monday, July 1 at 9pm ET/PT. Hosted by Kardea Brown, each episode features four world-class cupcake experts battling to achieve new levels of edible ingenuity in two rounds of competition for a $10,000 cash prize. Judge Maureen McCormick is joined by a revolving panel of guest judges, including Nacho Aguirre, Lerome Campbell, Amirah Kassem, Stella Parks, Gesine Prado and Joshua John Russell, to determine who is named each week’s Cupcake Champion.

“The cupcakes may be small, but the artistry these bakers accomplish is huge,” said Courtney White, President, Food Network. “Our viewers will marvel at the creativity of these cupcakes – they are truly spectacular.”

Each episode kicks off with the Designer Challenge where the four contestants must create cupcakes to celebrate an event or theme, and the judges send the least successful baker home. The three remaining contestants then proceed to the Imagination Challenge, an amped-up battle to create a three-dimensional cupcake tableau with bigger displays and multiple flavor components.

In the premiere episode, the cupcake makers are challenged to make succulent plants out of cupcakes…but things get prickly when one cupcaker is eliminated by judges in the first round. The three remaining competitors take on the delicacies of beautiful flower bouquet designs to see whose flower-bouquet cupcake display will earn them the title of Cupcake Champion and the $10,000 prize. Additional challenges during the season have the competitors making edible snow globes, incredibly detailed pet designs, savory ‘food imposters’, mythical beings and even an entire planet made out of cupcakes!

Go online to find out more about this delicious competition, and head to Food Network’s Instagram page to get to know host Kardea and judge Maureen as they reveal fun facts about themselves. Stay tuned to Food Network’s Facebook page for over-the-top cupcake designs and sweet tips for making dessert masterpieces at home. Join the conversation anytime using #CupcakeChampionship.

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FOOD NETWORK (www.foodnetwork.com) is a unique lifestyle network, website and magazine that connects viewers to the power and joy of food. The network strives to be viewers’ best friend in food and is committed to leading by teaching, inspiring, empowering and entertaining through its talent and expertise. Food Network is distributed to nearly 100 million U.S. households and draws over 46 million unique web users monthly. Since launching in 2009, Food Network Magazine’s rate base has grown 13 times and is the No. 2 best-selling monthly magazine on the newsstand, with 13.5 million readers. Food Network is owned by Discovery, Inc., a global leader in real life entertainment spanning 220 countries and territories; the portfolio also includes Discovery Channel, HGTV, TLC, Investigation Discovery, and OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network.

Netflix announces ‘Next in Fashion’ competition show, hosted by Tan France and Alexa Chung

May 17, 2019

Tan France and Alexa Chung of “Next in Fashion” (Photo courtesy of Netflix)

The following is a press release from Netflix:

“Next In Fashion” is a high-stakes competition series coming soon to Netflix featuring some of the world’s best and quietly innovative designers who compete for a chance to become the next big name in fashion. Hosted by fashion designer and TV personality Tan France (“Queer Eye”) and designer, model and global style icon Alexa Chung, “Next in Fashion” begins with 18 designers who face challenges centering on a different trend or design style that has influenced the way the entire world dresses.

These talented contestants have worked for major brands and dressed A-list celebrities, and will now compete head-to-head to see who has the skill, originality and determination to win the grand prize: $250,000 and an opportunity to debut their collection with luxury fashion retailer Net-a-Porter.

“Next in Fashion” is created and produced by theoldschool and is Executive Produced by Robin Ashbrook and Yasmin Shackleton with co-Executive Producer Adam Cooper.

Additional Details:

  • Co-Hosts: Tan France and Alexa Chung

  • Guest Judges: Elizabeth Stewart and Eva Chen are recurring guest judges with additional guest judges to be announced at a later date

  • Executive Producers:  Robin Ashbrook, Yasmin Shackleton and co-executive producer Adam Cooper

  • Season 1 # of episodes: 10

Instagram:  @NextInFashion

Roy Choi non-fiction series ‘Broken Bread’ premieres on KCET, Tastemade, Link TV

April 3, 2019

(Image courtesy of KCET)

The following is a press release from KCET and Tastemade:

KCET, a producer of award-winning and diverse original content for public media, and Tastemade, a global media company creating premium video programming in the food, travel and home verticals, announced today the premiere details of the new multi-media series “Broken Bread,” hosted by restaurant entrepreneur, social activist and acclaimed chef Roy Choi. In the show, Choi explores complex social justice issues and meets inspiring individuals and organizations who use food as a platform for activism as well as a catalyst for change. The series broadcast premiere is Wed., May 15 at 8:30 p.m. on PBS channel KCET in Southern California and on Tastemade TV now available on major streaming platforms. The series will subsequently air on May 21 on Link TV via DirecTV (channel 375) / Dish Network (channel 9410) at 9:30 pm ET/PT. Episodes will also be available on brokenbread.tv as well as the free PBS App.

Co-produced by KCET and Tastemade, the half-hour series profiles individuals and organizations who make a difference in their communities through food. Known for his home-grown approach to conscious cooking and community-building, Chef Choi uncovers innovative culinary and agricultural practices that transform food access, food justice and community. The series explores neighborhoods across Los Angeles, telling the stories of the trailblazers in the social conscious food movement including Father Greg Boyle (Homeboy Industries), Robert Egger (LA Kitchen), Olympia Auset (Suprmarkt), Mar Diego (Dough Girl) and more.

In each episode, Roy undergoes a journey of discovery that challenges the status quo—and his own assumptions—about the problems facing our food system. While the journeys are deeply personal and informed by Roy’s own experiences, “Broken Bread” explores some of the most pressing issues facing the food industry and our society: food deserts, food waste, immigration, sustainability, among others.

Visit Brokenbread.tv to learn about the organizations and the issues through articles, resource guides, and recipes. Viewers can take a deeper dive into the social justice issues explored in the series, and ways in which they can become activated to advance change.

A free community screening event in partnership with Live Nation will be held at the historic Los Angeles landmark, The Wiltern, as part of the Los Angeles Times Food Bowl on Sunday, May 5 from 5:30-8:30 pm. At the event’s opening reception, Roy Choi will be joined by community organizations and individuals from the series where they will host an interactive exploration of the power of food. Guests will be treated to “Broken Bread’s” premiere episode followed by a panel moderated by Choi himself and featuring the heroes highlighted in the series. For more information about attending the event, visit www.universe.com/brokenbreadlive

“Broken Bread” episodes are slated to air as follows (subject to change):

“Transformation” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming May 15.

Roy explores the power of cooking to rehabilitate those on the margins of society and the organizations taking a chance on those who need it most. He spends time with Father Greg Boyle of Homeboy and Homegirl Industries, the pioneer of socially minded food enterprises focused on transitioning former gang members from lives on the street to lives in kitchens. Roy also visits Mar Diego, a former drug dealer-turned-food entrepreneur who has opened Dough Girl, a pizza shop in the San Fernando Valley employing local kids struggling with drug use and homelessness. Additionally, the episode features L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti shedding light into workforce models with a purpose.

“Access” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming May 22.

Roy meets the individuals bringing healthy and affordable food options into South L.A. communities that lack access to fresh food. Roy also visits with vegan grocer Olympia Auset, whose startup Süprmarkt delivers healthy and affordable food to the doorsteps of her community. Finally, Roy visits Earle’s Hot Dogs, a vegetarian hot dog cart that has grown over its 30-year history into a multi-location brick and mortar shop, now a staple of a community hungry for healthier options.

“Future” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming May 29.

Roy explores future culinary landscapes looking forward to a world affected by climate change. He spends an evening with chefs Henry Fischer and Anna Rose Hopkins from Hank and Bean who make a surprising plant-forward dinner featuring non-traditional protein sources like crickets and jellyfish. Roy also visits with Ethan Brown of Beyond Meat, a company pioneering the plant-based replacements for our favorite burgers and sausages, and Vegan Hooligans, a pop-up restaurant in eastside LA’s Eagle Rock making classic American diner food out of entirely plant-based ingredients.

“Cannabis” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming June 5

Roy visits Chris Yang’s Pop Cultivate to explore the emergence of a new culinary landscape since the advent of legalized recreational marijuana. He then tackles the gentrification of cannabis culture by visiting Med Men, the leader in upscale legal weed retailers in Los Angeles. An interview with Virgil Grant, a formerly incarcerated weed dealer now seeking to run a legal distribution business, sheds light on efforts to build cannabis equity for those hit hardest by the War on Drugs. The episode also features interviews with actor/activist Cheech Marin and Shep Gordon.

“Waste” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming June 12

Roy journeys from L.A. to Orange County to discover how two non-profit innovators are tackling the problem of food waste. He then visits Robert Egger, whose project LA Kitchen is simultaneously aggregating wasted food, using it to cook fresh meals for those in need, and providing workforce training. Roy also visits Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen who partners with Chefs to End Hunger to reuse leftover food and distribute it with his food truck in Orange County. Roy also visits with Richard Garcia at Alma Backyard Farms in Compton where kids are learning how food in grown by digging in to Alma’s hands-on program.

“Watts” premieres on KCET & Tastemade and is available for streaming June 19

Roy takes a head-on look at efforts to heal the social and economic wounds of Watts, acknowledging one of the oldest communities in Los Angeles as a mirror into ourselves and our future. Led by activist Aqeela Sherrills, Roy visits with Sherrills’ mother as she prepares free food for the community, digs into the soul of what makes Watts Coffee House a cornerstone in the neighborhood and examines the missed opportunities of the Jordan Downs Housing Project redevelopment. Sharing the “real” story of his own restaurant Locol and where it stands within the community of Watts, Roy reflects as he connects with the very people navigating the most pressing issues facing our food systems.

Executive Producers are Roy Choi, KCET’s Juan Devis and Tastemade’s Co-founder and CEO Larry Fitzgibbon. Producers are Natasha Phan, Choi’s business partner, KCET’s Matthew Crotty and Tastemade’s Emily Mraz and Elizabeth Collins. “Broken Bread” is directed by James Mann.

ABOUT ROY CHOI
In 2008, Roy Choi and a crew of friends and family started what would be the beginning of the intersection between food, technology, culture, entrepreneurship and long lines. That comet was called Kogi BBQ and it made a splash on the streets of LA, being the first to use Twitter and ushering in a whole new generation of eaters and followers to what would be called America’s first viral restaurant by Newsweek. Roy was named Food & Wine’s Best New Chef 2010, one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People in the World 2016, LA Times Restaurant of the Year 2017 and has an award-winning New York Times Best Seller called L.A. Son: My Life, My City, My Food. He resides in Los Angeles, California where he oversees Kogi BBQ, Chego, A-Frame, Alibi Room, Locol and his first restaurant outside California called Best Friend at Park MGM, Las Vegas. Roy is also co-producer on the movie Chef as well as executive producer and host of the socially conscious show Broken Bread on KCET and Tastemade. He is a highly recognized speaker at events and panels worldwide. Choi is represented by Andrew Chason at CAA and Lisa Shotland at Shotlandia as well as Sylvia Desrochers and Big Time PR.

ABOUT KCET

On-air, online and in the community, KCET plays a vital role in the cultural and educational enrichment of Southern and Central California. KCET offers a wide range of award-winning local programming as well as the finest public television programs from around the world. Throughout its 54-year history, KCET has won hundreds of major awards for its local and regional news and public affairs programming, its national drama and documentary productions, its quality educational family and children’s programs, its outreach and community services and its website, kcet.org. KCET is a donor-supported community institution. For additional information about KCET productions, web-exclusive content, programming schedules and community events, please visit kcet.org. Select original programming from KCET is also available for streaming on Apple TV, YouTube, Amazon and Roku platforms. For more information please visit http://www.kcet.org/apps. KCET is a content channel of the Public Media Group of Southern California.

ABOUT TASTEMADE

Tastemade is a modern media brand inspiring the taste of a generation through entertainment, commerce and experiences. The company creates award-winning video programming in Food, Home and Travel, which appears on all major digital, mobile, streaming OTT and linear TV platforms. The company reaches a global audience of over 250 million monthly viewers, streaming 2.5 billion views, and has built an engaged, passionate, global community. Tastemade has won a host of awards for its storytelling, including two James Beard Awards. For more information, visit Tastemade at: www.tastemade.com.