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[01/02/07 - 10:23 AM]
Bravo Renews No. 1 Rated Food Series 'Top Chef' for a Third Helping and Kicks Off Nationwide Casting for New Season Staring This Month
Plus: this week's episode gets expanded to 70 minutes and will feature appearances by "Queer Eye's" Ted Allen And "Entourage's" Debi Mazar.

[via press release from Bravo]

BRAVO RENEWS NO. 1 RATED FOOD SERIES 'TOP CHEF' FOR A THIRD HELPING AND KICKS OFF NATIONWIDE CASTING FOR NEW SEASON STARING THIS MONTH

BRAVO RENEWS NO. 1 RATED FOOD SERIES 'TOP CHEF' FOR A THIRD HELPING AND KICKS OFF NATIONWIDE CASTING FOR NEW SEASON STARING THIS MONTH

"Top Chef" Season Two Gets Supersized With An All-New Episode Featuring Guest Appearances By "Queer Eye's" Ted Allen And "Entourage's" Debi Mazar, Wednesday, January 3, 10:00-11:10 PM ET/PT

NEW YORK, NY � January 2, 2007 � Bravo orders another helping of its acclaimed series "Top Chef," the No. 1 rated food series in all of cable television, for a third season of culinary competition. A nationwide casting call for season three fires-up this month with cook-offs in Dallas, Las Vegas, Miami, New York, and San Francisco. For more information, interested candidates can logon to BravoTV.com/casting. The announcement was made today by Lauren Zalaznick, President, Bravo.

"The second season of 'Top Chef' has outperformed even our highest expectations both in ratings and the quality of this non-fictional competitive drama," said Zalaznick. "We look forward to discovering another group of culinary talents with the same passion for food and cooking with commanding personalities that make 'Top Chef' a must see every Wednesday night."

"Top Chef" currently ranks as the number one rated food series in all of cable television averaging 1,224,000 P18-49, according to Nielsen Media Research. Season to date, "Top Chef" commands an impressive 56% percent increase among total viewers over the first cycle with five episodes remaining (1,224,000 vs. 786,000). "Top Chef" season two is Wednesday's #1 cable series among Women 25-54, averaging 755,000 viewers in the demo.

Season two of "Top Chef" returns tomorrow night with a "supersized" edition, featuring guest judges Ted Allen ("Queer Eye") and Robert Ivan, Consulting Chef of Mauro's Caf� at Fred Segal, along with a special appearance by Debi Mazar ("Entourage"), Jan. 3, 10-11:10 p.m. ET/PT.

In a colorful competition, the cooks must put their creative minds to the test, whipping up a three-item dish using one of the colors of the rainbow. Host Padma Lakshmi and judge Tom Colicchio size-up the dishes that are not only a treat for the taste buds, but also appealing to the eye -- save for possibly the chef 's dish who is color blind.

Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz of Magical Elves, the Emmy-nominated producers of "Project Runway," will return as executive producers for the third season of "Top Chef," along with executive producer Shauna Minoprio.

Bravo is the cable network that plugs people into arts, entertainment and pop culture with original programming, acclaimed drama series, movies, comedy and music specials, and by showing a whole different side of celebrities. Currently available in more than 83 million homes, Bravo is known for breaking exciting new personalities, shaking up the way we look at style, media, fame and Hollywood, pulling back the curtain on the creative process, and making influential and inventive original programming. Its critically acclaimed original programming includes the Emmy-nominated "Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List," 12-time Emmy-nominated "Inside the Actors Studio," "The Real Housewives of Orange County," "Top Chef," "Celebrity Poker Showdown," as well as the 2004 Emmy winner for Outstanding Reality Program, "Queer Eye," and the four-time Emmy-nominated hit competition series, "Project Runway."

Bravo is a program service of NBC Universal Cable Entertainment, a division of NBC Universal one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. Bravo has been an NBC cable network since December 2002 and was the first television service dedicated to film and the performing arts when it launched in December 1980. For more information visit www.bravotv.com.





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· ENTOURAGE (HBO)
· PROJECT RUNWAY (LIFETIME)
· QUEER EYE (NETFLIX)
· TOP CHEF (BRAVO)





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