Sunday, July 09, 2006

'Project Runway' has intriguing third-season lineup

Heidi Klum is excited about the third season of “Project Runway” (premiering Wednesday at 10 p.m. on Bravo). She just won’t say much about it.
To make sure viewers are surprised, the supermodel refused to dish about the celebrity guest judges, the new challenges for the 15 designers or how Macy’s corporate sponsorship will change the show. Her lips are sewn tighter than, well, a Santino Rice design.
Klum did say this season brings “more sophisticated and more professional designers to the competition. They see how big ‘Project Runway’ has become, and that it is real and we’re not just some goofballs doing stupid stuff,” Klum said during a recent telephone conference call.

“I think America has great designers to offer and great talent out there. I think that’s what our show is about. I think that’s why reality TV has become so successful because you see lives of so many different people in this country, and they want to have a shot in life. Our show is not about grinding up worms and eating them or seeing how long they can last doing some crazy stunt.”
The expectant mother, who also hosts the German version of “Next Top Model,” promises that even though the competitors have had the benefit of watching the previous seasons, she and lovable mentor Tim Gunn still manage to challenge them.

“They all think they know everything by now,” she said. “But, you know, I still shock them a lot.”
She has sympathy for the contestants when they exhibit catty, bratty behavior.
“I think that it’s just normal. They’re under a lot of pressure. We give them hard challenges and they want to win. A lot of people stopped their business for a long period of time to come to New York and do this experience with us. So they really want to make it work. They don’t want to be the one who gets kicked off. We see them once a week and think, ‘How bad can it be?’ But you turn the TV off and live your normal life again and they’re still there. It’s very hard to be around the same people. You can’t watch TV. You can’t call people. You can’t speak to your friends and bitch about the other people.”
Klum doesn’t believe winning the show guarantees success in the competitive design field.
“Just because you are the winner of ‘Project Runway’ doesn’t mean you are the winner out there,” she said. “Because then you are on your own, and it’s really up to you what you make out of this.”


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