[08/15/05 - 12:00 AM]
Starting Over' Doubles the Daytime Drama

[via press release from NBC Universal Television Studio]



Groundbreaking, Emmy-Winning Series Hosts Four Couples as Third Season Begins with ?Relationship Boot Camp?

Couples Attempt to Overcome Infidelity, Financial and Anger Issues

Burbank, CA- August 15, 2005 -STARTING OVER, the first-ever, real-life daytime drama from NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution and Bunim-Murray Productions ("The Real World," "The Simple Life"), has started production on its highly-anticipated third season, which premieres on September 19, 2005 (syndicated, check local listings for time and station). The innovative, critically-acclaimed series has broken with its own tradition and started the season with a surprise: men have joined women in the STARTING OVER house.

STARTING OVER is currently sold in more than 95% of the U.S. for its third season in national syndication. The series enters the 2005-2006 TV season with significant time period upgrades in more than 50 top U.S. markets.

The third season starts with four couples moving into a new STARTING OVER house in Southern California's San Fernando Valley. STARTING OVER Life Coaches Rhonda Britten and Iyanla Vanzant, and Consulting Psychologist Dr. Stan Katz return and host an intensive, three-week Relationship Boot Camp for the couples, each at a critical crossroads in their relationship.

The difficulties that the STARTING OVER couples face include: the turmoil caused by infidelity, the stress that money has on relationships, the strain caused by lies and a quick temper, and the difficulties that cultural differences put on a relationship.

"We like to keep STARTING OVER fresh for the daytime audience," said Jon Murray, Chairman of Bunim-Murray Productions and Executive Producer STARTING OVER. "From day one, fans have been asking, 'Will you ever put men in the STARTING OVER house?' We thought it was time to give the fans what they want, and show a different aspect of what Life Coaches can accomplish."

"Having men, couples come into the STARTING OVER house is a natural extension for this special series," says Linda Finnell, Senior Vice President, Programming and Development, NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution. "From what we have already seen in production, this will be a great way to kick off our third season."

STARTING OVER will provide critical, couples-based life coaching in the five basic principles of healthy relationships: Respect, Commitment, Cooperation, Intimacy and Affection, and Trust. Each couple in the STARTING OVER house has had a breakdown in at least one of those areas.

During Relationship Boot Camp, the couples and viewers at home will learn mental tools and get instructions necessary to improve their relationships. At the conclusion of this series of special episodes that will air during the initial weeks of the season, the couples will leave and six women will enter the STARTING OVER house for a return to the traditional daytime drama that STARTING OVER fans have come to love and expect.

The new location for the Emmy-winning series is a gorgeous, sprawling ranch-style estate with tennis courts, lush gardens, and a pool. As in previous seasons, scores of cameras will capture the daily drama that makes this show such a treat for its fans, and which has caused it to be described as "Hellishly addictive" by New York Magazine.

The couples who will participate in STARTING OVER Relationship Boot Camp are:

Jacylyn (23) and Michael (26)
Phoenix, AZ
Young and in love, they want to graduate from the house engaged, but there are several real issues they need to overcome if that is to happen. During a temporary break-up caused by Michael's infidelity, tragedy struck Jacylyn. Despite getting back together, the relationship is in turmoil; he feels terribly guilty and she is unable to trust him, or anyone else.

Lou (37) and Jennifer (39)
Dallas, TX
Lou and Jennifer have been married for 10 years and have a child together, but they fight more than they get along. Lou is a hairdresser, while Jennifer works for her family and is much more high-strung and demanding. The couple fights about money constantly and needs to learn how to work out their differences in a more constructive fashion.

Troy (38 ) Cheryl (42)
Denver, CO
Troy and Cheryl have been married longer than most couples-- going on 20 years. However, it has not been an easy road and after so many years together, the two have gotten into some unhealthy patterns. Cheryl has a powerful temper, and Troy hides the truth to avoid getting his wife angry. They want to recapture the spark they once had and to rebuild their relationship.

Simon (26) and Kacie (26)
Los Angeles, CA
Simon comes from a very strict, old-fashioned Pakistani family that believes in wives dressing demurely, staying at home, and taking care of the family. Kacie is a modern, outspoken woman. This couple does not agree on much, and the culture clash is affecting how they raise their four year old daughter. Both Simon and Kacie agree on one thing; marriage is forever, so they need help finding common ground.

The STARTING OVER support team consists of:

Rhonda Britten - Founder of the Fearless Living Institute (FLI), Rhonda Britten returns for her third season as a Life Coach on STARTING OVER. Known for her trademark creative exercises that vividly demonstrate the concepts behind her coaching, Britten is the author of Change Your Life in 30 Days, Fearless Loving and Fearless Living, which is a worldwide hit and has been translated into 12 languages. She can also be seen in the United Kingdom on the primetime television hit Help Me Rhonda.

Iyanla Vanzant - Iyanla Vanzant rose from humble beginnings to become the best-selling author of more than a dozen books such as Acts of Faith and In the Meantime, a celebrated columnist for Essence magazine, an inspirational teacher, and Founder of the Inner Visions Spiritual Life Maintenance Center. Vanzant leads extremely popular personal growth and motivational workshops all over the world.

Stan J. Katz, Ph.D. - Dr. Stan J. Katz is Consulting Psychologist to the STARTING Over housemates, and plays a critical role in their treatment, and in their understanding of STARTING OVER. With more than 25 years of clinical experience, Dr. Katz is a nationally recognized clinical and forensic psychologist with graduate degrees from Boston University and UCLA who has co-authored several self-help books about relationships and abuse.

In its second season, "Starting Over" grew an impressive 43% in women 25-54, according to Nielsen Media Research data (9/15/03-3/7/04 vs. 9/20/04-3/6/05). The series also currently has the highest audience concentration of women 18-49 and women 25-54 of any nationally syndicated program. It enters the 2005-2006 season with more than 25 local market upgrades, and a Daytime Emmy Award which it won in the category of "Outstanding Special Class Series."

STARTING OVER is produced by Bunim-Murray Productions, the creators of the hit series "The Simple Life," "The Real World" and "Road Rules." It is distributed by NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution. Jonathan Murray and Millee Taggart-Ratcliffe are Executive Producers. STARTING OVER is currently sold in more than 95% of the U.S. for its third season in national syndication.

About NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution
NBC Universal is a leader in providing entertainment programming to the domestic and international marketplaces. The NBC Universal Television Distribution division is responsible for the global distribution of NBC Universal product to all forms of television throughout the world. This includes distribution of current and library film and television product, including formats and non-scripted programming, in the pay, free, and basic markets, as well as the domestic syndication of first-run syndicated TV programs and theatrical and TV movie packages.

Current and upcoming first-run strip syndicated programming at NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution includes a new daily series with Martha Stewart, Access Hollywood, Blind Date, The Jane Pauley Show, The Jerry Springer Show, Maury and Starting Over. Current and upcoming first-run weekly syndicated programming includes The Chris Matthews Show, The George Michael Sports Machine, Rebecca's Garden, The Wall Street Journal Report with Maria Bartiromo, Your Total Health and the off-network distribution of Crossing Jordan, Fear Factor, Providence, and the Law & Order franchise. Special programming includes Good Housekeeping Reports news inserts, a series of The Remarkable Journey specials, as well as a collection of feature film packages.

  [august 2005]  


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