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[09/18/06 - 12:00 AM]
Bravo Inks Deal with Img Media to Produce "Better Half" -- a Six Episode One-Hour New Original Reality Competition Series

[via press release from Bravo]

BRAVO INKS DEAL WITH IMG MEDIA TO PRODUCE "BETTER HALF" -- A SIX EPISODE ONE-HOUR NEW ORIGINAL REALITY COMPETITION SERIES

BRAVO INKS DEAL WITH IMG MEDIA TO PRODUCE "BETTER HALF" -- A SIX EPISODE ONE-HOUR NEW ORIGINAL REALITY COMPETITION SERIES

SERIES TO BE HOSTED BY "CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM" STAR SUSIE ESSMAN

PRODUCTION BEGINS SHOOTING THIS MONTH IN NEW YORK CITY

NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 18, 2006 - Bravo partners with IMG Media to bring viewers "Better Half," which was previously announced as a series in development under the title "War of the Wives." Hosted by "Curb Your Enthusiasm" star Susie Essman, this new one-hour six episode competition series begins production this month in New York City. The announcement was made by Frances Berwick, EVP, Programming & Production, Bravo.

In each episode, the spouses/mates of two trained professionals, such as chefs, comedians, party planners, hairstylists, square off in competition. The professionals have two days to coach their novice partner to take on their jobs and beat the opposing "better half" in a final challenge for a lucrative prize. Each week, three judges renowned in the featured line of work will assess how well each couple executed the job handoff. Skilled in managing her own "better half," the outspoken and honest Essman will shadow, needle and critique how the couples listen, learn and love without killing each other first.

"'Better Half' puts a new spin on Bravo's reality competition programs that explore creative professions," said Berwick. "It's a fresh perspective to see the process of a specialist teach a novice their trade and see inside of that creative profession. There's also the added drama of the experts training their partners. I don't know many people who like having their spouse tell them what to do. "

Susie Essman has played the venomous Susie Greene for all four seasons of the critically-acclaimed HBO comedy series, Curb Your Enthusiasm. Susie is the no-nonsense wife of Larry David's cheerful agent Jeff Greene. Essman's streetwise vernacular also suggests the contrast between Curb's L.A. setting and her real life preferred location--New York. The Manhattan-based Essman is a veteran of the world of standup comedy, logging thousands of performances on the Gotham comedy circuit. She has appeared in her own half-hour HBO comedy special, hosted the American Comedy Awards, and performed on Comedy Central's "The Friar's Roast of Jerry Stiller", "Politically Incorrect" and "Latenight with Conan O'Brien". Her other television credits include appearances on "Law and Order", "Law and Order: Criminal Intent" and "The King Of Queens". Essman has appeared in the films "Keeping The Faith", "The Siege", "Volcano," "Punchline" and "The Man." Her talent and audacity made her a natural choice to perform off-Broadway in the play "The Vagina Monologues." Susie was the voice of Helen Higgins in the puppet animation/crank call series "Crank Yankers" on Comedy Central.

IMG Media also produced "Battle of the Network Reality Stars" for Bravo. Susan Horowitz and Steve Mayer are executive producers and David Snyder is co-executive producer for IMG.

IMG Media produces and distributes over 10,000 hours of sports, documentary, drama, comedy, entertainment, popular factual and children's content annually, over multiple platforms across 200 countries. It also represents the broadcast rights to many of the world's premier sporting events. Currently, IMG Media has numerous new programs in development and has produced series that include "Race to the Alter" for NBC, "Ice Diaries" for TLC and "Battle of the Network Reality Stars" for Bravo. IMG Media is well known for its production of "Christmas at Rockefeller Center," "Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular," and "Super Bowl's Greatest Commercials." IMG Media also produces a complement of sports productions such as "World's Strongest Man," "Battle of the Gridiron Stars" and "ESPN's Tennis Masters Series." For more information visit www.imgworld.com.

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 80 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 a 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.





  [september 2006]  
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· BATTLE OF THE NETWORK REALITY STARS (BRAVO)
· BETTER HALF (BRAVO)
· CRANK YANKERS (COMEDY CENTRAL)
· CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM (HBO)
· KING OF QUEENS, THE (CBS)
· LAW & ORDER (NBC)
· LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT (USA)
· RACE TO THE ALTAR (NBC)





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