Don't have the patience to stick with an entire season of America's Next Top Model? The folks at E! have heard you. Vulture has learned that the cable network is working with Scott Lipps's Manhattan modeling agency One Management on Scouted, a new reality series in which viewers will get to witness wannabe Giseles and Bars try to make a splash in the modeling business within the course of a single one-hour episode. E! is fast-tracking the project, ordering eight episodes and setting a post-Thanksgiving premiere date of November 28 at 10 p.m. So how will Scouted be different than Top Model? Well, for one thing, it's not a competition series.
According to E! programming chief Lisa Berger, the idea behind the show is to take "viewers into the small towns where new talent is discovered, to burger joints and department stores where the next supermodel might just be working behind a counter." Rather than semi-staged catfights between contestants, episodes will focus on individual models, some of whom will not even be looking for careers in the business. That's because the show's selection process will start with local modeling scouts in Houston, Richmond, San Francisco, and Salt Lake City identifying talent they discover rather than simply sifting through eight-by-ten glossies. "That's what makes this such an exciting new show for us — revealing the surprising process of how a star can be born," Berger says.
In the early part of each episode, the candidates — both female and male — will be given quickie makeovers and modeling tips before having their head shots sent off to One Management. One, whose client roster includes Claudia Schiffer, Bar Refaeli, Devon Aoki, Eva Herzigova, and Iman, will then pick the contenders it likes the most; those with potential get a trip to New York to work with modeling experts, including Michael Flutie, Beri Smither, Dani Stahl, and Julia Samersova. The four industry pros will prep the contestants and send them off to One for a final verdict. Episodes will wrap up with the models either getting assignments or being sent back into obscurity. Scouted is being produced by Cris Abrego Productions (Abrego is the reality known for shows such as Flavor of Love and The Surreal Life).
While Scouted clearly isn't going for the grand competition vibe of Top Model (if anything, the goal is to play up the personal, hopes-and-dreams stories of participants), the folks at the CW will probably take notice of E!'s series anyway. That's because last May, the network announced plans for a mid-season reality show called Re-Modeled, from Big Brother producers Allison Grodner and Rich Meehan. The C-Dub's series features industry vet Paul Fisher working with a nationwide network of local modeling agencies as they try to create new stars. Re-Modeled, however, is expected to focus as much on the talent scouts as the aspiring models. No word yet on when the CW will debut its show.