January 29, 2008 08:35 PM by Joe Reality
The Celebrity Apprentice has been a ratings success for NBC, and the network announced today that the show has been renewed for a second season. The second season of The Celebrity Apprentice is slated to premiere in January of 2009. The show will also remain in New York for second season.
In addition, NBC announced that the season finale of the current edition of The Celebrity Apprentice will be a two hour live edition airing from New York City on Thursday, March 27, 2008 starting at 9 PM ET. The live finale will be filmed in front of a live studio audience. The final challenge will involve a celebrity charity auction and a live concert for a Multi-Platinum, Grammy nominated American Pop Group. On the finale, Donald Trump will announce the total amount raised for charity and will announce the winner of the first Celebrity Apprentice.
Craig Plestis, Executive Vice President, Alternative Programming, Development and Specials at NBC Entertainment, made the announcement. Plestis said, “This revved up installment of The Apprentice has been a game changer for the series. As the rest of this season unfolds, you just keep watching, these episodes have been more thrilling than any season before. There were times when I was screaming at the TV set, literally, and the live finale will leave you on the edge of your seat.” Plestis added. “We are blown away by the casts drive, energy, and passion to not only play the game but also to raise a lot of money and awareness for important causes. There’s no other show like it to prove your business brain and we are already getting calls from high-profile celebrities who want to challenge themselves in Season 2.”
“Everywhere I go, people come up to me and ask about Celebrity Apprentice. Viewers are clearly connecting, but beyond the terrific ratings, it’s really the charities who are winning the most. Our celebrities have raised over a million dollars to date. We are so glad NBC has decided to continue this franchise,” said Mark Burnett, executive producer of The Celebrity Apprentice.
“Millions of viewers have spoken and made Celebrity Apprentice the #1 show on Thursday nights so far this year. Ben Silverman and his team have done a tremendous job and Mark Burnett and I are thrilled to begin an eighth season of this amazingly successful franchise,” said Donald J. Trump, executive producer of The Celebrity Apprentice.
In addition to Plestis, Burnett, and Trump, the charities that have received money as part of the show are also very excited about The Celebrity Apprentice. Here is what a couple of them had to say.
“We are so grateful for the ongoing support of NBC and Mark Burnett Productions, and we truly appreciate Gene Simmons’ choice to compete on our behalf,” said Pamela W. Barnes, president and chief executive officer of the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation. “Through its emphasis on charitable work and giving back, Celebrity Apprentice has done a great service — and in doing so, helped children and families around the world. We sincerely thank you.”
“We are so grateful to Mr. Trump for his ongoing commitment in the fight against breast cancer,” said Carol Baldwin for the Carol M. Baldwin Breast Cancer Research Fund of CNY, Inc.
“The Lustgarten Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research is thrilled to be one of the beneficiaries of NBC’s The Celebrity Apprentice. Not only is the show a unique twist to the great concept of the original The Apprentice but it is a real tribute to the show that so many charities have benefited significantly with hundreds of thousands of dollars already donated to worthy causes. We thank Vincent Pastore for playing on our behalf, the $50,000 we received will support life saving research for pancreatic cancer,” said Kerri Kaplan, Executive Director, The Lustgarten Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research.
“We are grateful to Tito Ortiz for designating St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital as his charity of choice as part of The Celebrity Apprentice,” said John P. Moses, chief executive officer of ALSAC, the fundraising organization of St. Jude. “We depend upon the generosity of people across this nation who, like Tito, embrace the dream of our founder Danny Thomas — that no child should die in the dawn of life.”
Photo Credit: NBC