NBC has ordered a reality competition series titled "United Plates of America
" from the team behind "Project Runway" and "Top Chef."
The tentatively titled project will be produced by Magical Elves (the company, not actual little people with a proficiency in the dark arts) and will give contestants the chance to open a restaurant chain in four major American cities.
Actually, we just made up "major American cities." The NBC press release just says "four cities across America," so look out, Jackson, Mississippi and Ames, Iowa!
"This is the first time the culinary and business worlds have come together in a big event series where the prize is one of the largest in reality TV history," states Paul Telegdy, NBC and Universal Media Studio's EVP for alternative programming. "Not only will viewers get to watch the competition unfold, they'll be able to eat at the winning restaurant immediately after the show's finale."
The contestants on "United Plates of America" will be asked to come up with a concept for the chain, but that's just the beginning. They'll also have to organize a financial plan and put their brilliant idea in front of actual investors, who will choose to either fund the restaurant or not.
"With a prize of this magnitude, we believe this show will bring together everything we love about reality TV; creative passionate contestants, a dynamic panel of experts, and fierce competition," states executive producer Jane Lipsitz.
Adds fellow executive producer Dan Cutforth, "This show is going to make the American Dream come true for someone out there -- all they need is one great idea," said executive producer Dan Cutforth."
NBC hasn't set any timetable for "United Plates of America," but if you're interested in competing, drop by NBC Casting