CMT INKS DEVELOPMENT DEAL WITH STEVE AUSTIN AND TAPS HIM TO HOST NEW REALITY COMPETITION SERIES "REDNECK ISLAND"
LOS ANGELES - May 7, 2012 - CMT has inked a development deal with actor and former WWE superstar Steve Austin, tapping him as host of a new 10-episode series REDNECK ISLAND, it was announced today by Jayson Dinsmore, EVP, Programming and Development, CMT. Produced by 51 Minds Entertainment, REDNECK ISLAND takes 12 red, white and blue-collared Americans out of the South - and far away from cold beer - dropping them in a tropical paradise where they will compete for $100,000. The redneck-style competition series will debut in June, paired with a second season of CMT's hit series MY BIG REDNECK VACATION. As part of his development deal, Austin will look to produce additional series for CMT with his production company, Broken Skull Ranch Productions.
"Steve Austin is a true creative powerhouse, both in front of, and behind the camera, and we're happy to be in business with him," said Dinsmore. "In our first project together, he'll serve as host to the ultimate competition reality series on 'Redneck Island,' where he'll oversee a cast of characters who attempt to survive hilarious and unpredictable challenges in unique redneck fashion."
"I am thrilled to join the CMT family and for the opportunity to work with them on future projects," added Austin. "I'm also excited to work with the great folks at 51 Minds Entertainment on REDNECK ISLAND. If there's one thing I know, it's how to keep a bunch of rednecks in line. And that's the bottom line!"
REDNECK ISLAND begins with 12 men and women competing as teams in a fight for $100,000 cash. From a remote location, Austin will guide the contestants through a number of hilarious mental and physical challenges designed to celebrate the group's strengths and limitations. At the end of each episode, teammates will send one competitor packing.
One of the most popular pro-wrestling superstars of all time, Austin has been busy reinventing himself since retiring from the ring in 2003. The hugely popular WWE Hall of Fame inductee hit the big screen in 2010 in Sylvester Stallone's action thriller, The Expendables, co-starring alongside a who's who in action films, followed by the lead role in the hard-hitting action tale, Damage, one of Fox Home Video's best-selling releases. In 2011, Austin starred in The Stranger and Hunt To Kill, both released by Anchor Bay. Austin also served as host for USA's hit reality series Tough Enough. Austin will next be seen headlining The Package opposite Dolph Lungdren and Maximum Conviction opposite Steven Segal. During his down time, Austin likes to spend time at his 2,100-acre Broken Skull Ranch in South Texas with his wife Kristin and their three Labradors.
REDNECK ISLAND is executive produced by Cris Abrego and Matt Westmore from 51 Minds Entertainment and Clay Newbill from 310 Entertainment, along with Steve Austin from Broken Skull Ranch Productions. Jayson Dinsmore and Melanie Moreau serve as executive producers for CMT. Austin is repped by UTA and attorney Patrick Knapp.
CMT, a unit of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIA, VIAB), is the leading television and digital authority on country music and entertainment, reaching more than 92 million homes in the U.S. CMT and its website, CMT.com, offer an unparalleled mix of music, news, live concerts and series and is the top resource for country music on demand. The network's digital platforms include the 24-hour music channel, CMT Pure Country, CMT Mobile and CMT VOD.