WE: Women's Entertainment Partners With USA TODAY to Introduce New Series, "USA TODAY/WE Weight-Loss Challenge"
Call to Action Begins Today Six Dieters Will Be Profiled on WE and In USA TODAY This Spring
New York, NY, February 7, 2006 - WE: Women's Entertainment (WE), the only cable network dedicated to helping women connect to one another and the world around them, announced today a new partnership with USA TODAY to bring the "USA TODAY/WE Weight-loss Challenge" to audiences this spring. Six highly motivated individuals will be profiled on the network, in the newspaper and on USATODAY.com, as they make the necessary sacrifices to achieve significant weight-loss. The Call to Action kicks off today.
"We are very excited to be partnering with USA TODAY for this entertaining and inspirational initiative," said Kim Martin, WE's Executive Vice President and General Manager. "This Challenge is completely in line with our commitment to providing original programming that is relevant, fun, and engaging for our viewers."
Eight weekly episodes -- including a one-hour premiere introducing the six participants and their respective weight-loss plans, six half-hour episodes profiling each of the six participants, and a one-hour wrap up finale announcing the weight-loss results -- will begin airing on WE in late spring. USA TODAY will simultaneously cover the challenge with weekly articles. The first article introducing the six participants will coincide with the network premiere, and subsequent articles will focus on the individual participant to be profiled in the show that week.
The Call to Action, requesting that applicants send in 5-minute tapes of themselves, will run in USA TODAY on February 7th. Six people who have lost 20 pounds or more over the past year but have recently hit a plateau, will be chosen for the "USA TODAY/WE Weight-loss Challenge" and profiled throughout their journey. The dieters will be matched to a program best suited to their needs. Some will go to a weight-loss spa; others will be matched with a program like Weight Watchers or Jenny Craig. All will be supported by a special friend or loved one to help them achieve their goals, in addition to receiving guidance from weight-loss and fitness professionals throughout the challenge.
The "USA TODAY/WE Weight-loss Challenge" will join WE's growing list of original programming, including: Style Me with Rachel Hunter, a new weekly series following twelve aspiring stylists as they compete to win the chance to style actress and supermodel Rachel Hunter for a red carpet appearance; Two Funny: Cotter & Louise, a show that follows the lives of two comedians, Kerri Louise and Tom Cotter as they juggle many roles as a married couple with two year-old twin boys, and also as working comics; John Edward Cross Country, a documentary style series that follows the acclaimed psychic medium as he embarks on a cross country journey to do readings and visit the homes of families he has helped during his large group sessions; Skating's Next Star, hosted by Olympic gold medalist Kristi Yamaguchi, the series follows contestants through their struggles on the ice and the drama behind the scenes; and, back by popular demand, a third season of WE's hit series, Bridezillas, a weekly reality show that takes a comedic look at how brides-to-be go from sweet to certifiable while planning their big day.
Today's announcement comes on the heels of a record month for WE. January 2006 was the best month in WE's history for Prime M-Su 8p-11p delivery of HH, W18-34, W18-49 and W25-54. In addition, January 2006 saw +105% more original telecasts on WE compared to January 2005.
The "USA TODAY/WE Weight-loss Challenge" is a co-production between WE: Women's Entertainment and USA TODAY.
About USA TODAY
USA TODAY is the nation's top-selling newspaper. It is published via satellite at 36 locations in the USA and at four sites abroad. With a total average daily circulation of 2.3 million, USA TODAY is available worldwide. USA TODAY is published by Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI). The USA TODAY brand also includes: USA TODAY Sports Weekly, a magazine for enthusiasts of professional football and baseball; USATODAY.com, an award-winning news and information Web site that is updated 24 hours per day; and USA TODAY LIVE, the television arm of the USA TODAY brand that brings the spirit and quality of the newspaper to television.
About WE: Women's Entertainment
WE: Women's Entertainment is the only cable network dedicated to helping women connect to one another and the world around them. With quality original programming including the hit series "Bridezillas," unique movie packages like "Three Men and A Chick Flick," topical specials and its public affairs initiative WE Empowers Women, the network supports women and appeals to their interests in pop culture, relationships and personal style. WE: Women's Entertainment is a subsidiary of Rainbow Entertainment Services and is currently seen in over 56 million homes.
**Source: Nielsen Media Research, 12/26/05-1/29/06 Live HH, Women 18-34, Women 18-49, Women 25-54 Audience; Prime M-Su 8p-11p. WE Originals based on Total Day (M-Su 10a-5a) telecasts Jan06 (12/26/05-1/29/06) vs. Jan05 (12/27/04-1/30/05).