HGTV orders Ellen-produced design competition series

The six-episode Ellen's Design Challenge is a coproduction between the talk show host's A Very Good Production and A. Smith & Co. in association with Telepictures, and will air on the U.S. network in 2015.
April 22, 2014

HGTV has greenlit a design competition series that will be exec produced by talk show host Ellen Degeneres.

Ellen’s Design Challenge, a coproduction between Degeneres’ A Very Good Production and A. Smith & Co., in association with Telepictures, is set to be a six-part series that will begin airing on the U.S. cable network in 2015.

The series is inspired by the recent Oscar host’s expertise in furniture design and love of buying and renovating homes, the network said in a statement.

It will feature six contestants competing for a cash prize by sketching, designing and building “extraordinary furniture” within a 24-hour time frame. The competitors will work with expert carpenters and the designs will be evaluated by a panel of judges.

In addition, HGTV will run a six-part companion series online that will give viewers a chance to participate and get to know the designers.

“I’m so excited about this show because I love finding really special pieces of furniture,” said DeGeneres in a statement. “One time I found a beautiful one-of-a-kind armoire that spoke to me in a way I’d never experienced. It turned out there was a drifter living inside of it, but that’s a story for another time.”

Degeneres will exec produce with A Very Good Production’s Jeff Kleeman and A. Smith & Co.’s Arthur Smith, Kent Weed and Jay Bienstock.

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Managing editor with realscreen publication, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Darah is an award-winning journalist who has spent over two decades covering a wide range of issues from real estate and urban development to immigration, politics and human rights, primarily with The Vancouver Sun. Prior to joining realscreen, she was editor of Stream Daily, realscreen's sister publication covering the dynamic global digital video industry. She also served a stint as a war reporter in Afghanistan for television and print, and was a national business blogger with Yahoo Canada.