NBC's reality competition series "Fashion Star" launches its second season this spring featuring celebrity mentors Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie and John Varvatos, and television presenter and Glamour Magazine's fashion editor-at-large Louise Roe as host. Macy's and Saks Fifth Avenue return to the show, with specialty fashion retailer Express joining as the third buyer this season. "Fashion Star" will give 12 eager young designers the chance to win a multi-million dollar prize of launching their original collections in three of the nation's largest fashion retailers.
Each week, the contestants are given a challenge to design clothing with a certain look, feel and function. Working with their designated team, the mentors offer insight and advice to contestants as they design their creations, shop for materials and oversee the production of their garments. The culmination of their efforts comes with an exhilarating fashion show during which they display their work to the three buyers: Caprice Willard of Macy's, Terron E. Schaefer of Saks Fifth Avenue and Erika DeSalvatore of Express.
In the show's most ambitious and dramatic twist, the buyers make on-the-spot decisions to purchase and carry the designs exclusively in their stores - pledging thousands of dollars in orders and often going head-to-head to bid on an item. Those designs become available immediately after the broadcast both online and in select stores the next day. What viewers see on TV that night will be on the streets and in stores in the blink of an eye - and with just a single trip down the runway, "Fashion Star" can change the lives and fortunes of these aspiring designers forever. Each week, one of the designers is eliminated.
From New York and Los Angeles to Dallas and Austin, the designers featured on the show include a talented and inspired group of young professionals, many of whom have held jobs with major design houses and come to the competition having sold their own lines to major retail outlets. Fashion is a highly competitive and fluid business, however, and the contestants will be challenged to take their "brand" to the next level. All the contestants will be put to the test to see how they react in a variety of real-world scenarios to determine who has the vision and desire to build a fashion empire and achieve his or her dream.
In the end, one designer will successfully combine fashion and business to become the next "Fashion Star" and will receive the prize of a lifetime - $3,000,000 in orders for capsule collections in Macy's, Saks Fifth Avenue and Express stores.
"Fashion Star" recently won Best Branded Format at the FRAPA Format Awards at MIPCOM. The series was nominated for a precedent-setting three awards at the annual convention including Best Competition Reality Format, Best Brand-Driven Format and Best Multi-Platform Format. "Fashion Star" also took home Best Social Commerce or Marketing Program at the 2012 Social TV Awards.
The "Fashion Star" format was developed by Ben Silverman of Electus (NBC's "The Biggest Loser," "The Office" and "The Tudors"), Rick Ringbakk of Emmy Award-winning 5x5 Media ("Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution") and E.J. Johnston and James Deutch of EJD Productions.
The show is executive-produced by Elle Macpherson, Ben Silverman of Electus, Jane Lipsitz and Dan Cutforth of Magical Elves, Rick Ringbakk of 5x5 Media and EJ Johnston and James Deutch of EJD Productions. Electus International will retain all international distribution rights.