CMT GOES BEHIND THE SCENES WITH PAGEANT CONTESTANTS
IN THE NEW DOCUMENTARY SERIES "FINDING MISS AMERICA" PREMIERING IN JANUARY 2007
JUDGES TO SELECT TOP EIGHT FINALISTS
CMT VIEWERS TO CHOOSE ADDITIONAL SEVEN FINALISTS
TO COMPETE IN THE 2007 MISS AMERICA PAGEANT
SERIES TO SHOWCASE THE PAGEANT PRELIMINARIES
INCLUDING THE NEVER-BEFORE-SEEN JUDGES INTERVIEWS
NASHVILLE, TN and ATLANTIC CITY, NJ - April 1, 2006 - The road to becoming Miss America just took another twist as CMT and the Miss America Organization announce FINDING MISS AMERICA - a seven episode documentary series that follows the 52 Miss America finalists through the preliminary competitions prior to the 2007 MISS AMERICA PAGEANT. The series will air in the days leading up to the two hour Pageant, which is scheduled to premiere live in January 2007 on CMT.
For the first time in the Pageant's 85-year history, viewers will be given the opportunity to cast their votes via phone and CMT.com for their favorite contestants, thereby determining finalists to compete in the 2007 MISS AMERICA PAGEANT. In addition, viewers will get an inside look at the crucial, never-before-seen judges interview portion of the preliminary competition.
"One of our goals with last year's Pageant was to give viewers the opportunity to really get to know these contestants and root for their favorites," said Paul Villadolid, vice president, programming and development, CMT. "With the creation of this documentary series, viewers are now introduced to these contestants like never before, and are able to vote for seven of their favorites to make the finals. Now, in addition to their talent and smarts, personality will play a huge role in determining these finalists."
"This is a great change in direction for the continued evolution of the Miss America Organization," said Art McMaster, president/CEO of the Miss America Organization. "While we deeply value and honor our organization's traditions, we believe that this series will only increase viewer interest while showcasing the talents and character of these amazing women."
"These young women are educated, compassionate and beautiful and it's about time that viewers are finally able to see the hard work and dedication that goes into becoming Miss America," said Phyllis George, Miss America 1971 and member of the Miss America Organization Board.
The series will begin with each of the Miss America contestants traveling to the Pageant's host city in the Fall of 2006, where they will be divided up by random order into seven groups. Each of the seven episodes of the docu-series will focus on one particular group, as they live together and compete in the preliminary competitions -- evening wear, swimwear, talent and the one-on-one judges interviews, which have been previously conducted behind closed doors. At the end of the preliminary period, judges will tally their votes and secretly select the top eight finalists to be revealed live at the 2007 Pageant.
FINDING MISS AMERICA will begin airing in January 2007, in the days leading up to the 2007 MISS AMERICA PAGEANT. At the end of each episode, viewers will be able to vote for their favorite contestant via phone and CMT.com. Both viewer and judges selections will be announced live during the Pageant telecast, with 15 finalists advancing. The judging of the 15 finalists will follow the same established rules as in years past.
Villadolid adds: "This series will reflect the type of original programming that CMT does so well -- positive, heartfelt storytelling. FINDING MISS AMERICA will reveal the sacrifice and character of these accomplished contestants."
FINDING MISS AMERICA will be produced by Julie Pizzi and Patty Ivins at PB&J Television. The one-hour, seven episode series will be executive produced by Paul Villadolid and Nicole Zien for CMT.
The 2006 MISS AMERICA PAGEANT, hosted by James Denton, which premiered on CMT in January ranks as the most watched telecast ever in CMT's history with total viewers*. Since its premiere, re-airings of the Pageant have been seen by over 22 million different viewers. CMT has the rights to telecast the MISS AMERICA PAGEANT through 2007, with options to renew through 2011.
For the first time in its 85 year history, THE MISS AMERICA PAGEANT took place outside of Atlantic City and debuted in Las Vegas at the Aladdin Resort & Casino. 2006 also marks the first time the Pageant has aired on cable television. Jennifer Berry, Miss Oklahoma, is the current reigning Miss America.
CMT, America's No. 1 country music network, carries original programming, specials, and live concerts and events, as well as a mix of videos by established country music artists and new cutting-edge acts, including world premiere exclusive videos. Founded March 6, 1983, CMT, owned and operated by MTV Networks, reaches 80.9 million households in the United States. Go to country music's biggest web site at www.CMT.com.
The Miss America Organization is one of the nation's leading achievement programs and the world's largest provider of scholarship assistance for young women. Last year, the Miss America Organization and its state and local organizations made available more than $45 million in cash and scholarship assistance. For more information, go to www.missamerica.org.
Allowing the audience to pick the finalists? Gross, and NO. Hope it's an amazing April Fool's Joke from the pageant
Discuss! lol (it's like Coffee Talk from SNL)