"Junior MasterChef" set to start cooking during 2013-14 season
FOX renews hit cooking competition series "Hell's Kitchen" and "MasterChef" for additional season orders
FOX has picked up "Junior MasterChef," a new culinary competition series for talented kids between the ages of 8 and 13 who love to cook, as part of a new multi-year deal with award-winning chef Gordon Ramsay, it was announced today by Mike Darnell, president of alternative entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company.
As part of Ramsay's new deal, FOX also has picked up one additional season of "Hell's Kitchen" and two more seasons of "MasterChef." The deal will extend "Hell's Kitchen" to a 13th season and bring "MasterChef" to a fifth and sixth season. The addition of "Junior MasterChef" brings the total number of Ramsay-led shows airing on FOX to five, including "MasterChef," "Hell's Kitchen," "Hotel Hell" and "Kitchen Nightmares."
"Gordon brings an incredible level of energy and passion to each of his series that our viewers absolutely love, so we are thrilled that he will continue building his brand here on FOX," Darnell said. "He's a global superstar, and the success and longevity of his unprecedented five series on our network proves that America just can't get enough of Gordon."
"We have such great teams and partners on these shows, and I'm really excited we're able to offer this new opportunity to young budding chefs across the country with 'Junior MasterChef,' " Ramsay said. "Having my own children who love to cook, I know firsthand the skill and passion these kids can have at such a young age, and what they can do with it. It's just extraordinary to watch them in action."
"Junior MasterChef" is based on the hugely successful U.K. format and extends the "MasterChef" brand in the U.S. to include a younger group of aspiring master chefs. Produced by Shine America and One Potato Two Potato, "Junior MasterChef" will give budding cooks the opportunity to showcase their talent, culinary smarts and passion for food through a series of delicious challenges and cook-offs.
Similar to "MasterChef," Ramsay will be joined by restaurateur and winemaker Joe Bastianich (Del Posto, Eataly) and acclaimed chef Graham Elliot (Graham Elliot, Graham Elliot Bistro) on the "Junior MasterChef" judging panel. Together, the celebrated food experts will coach and encourage the promising hopefuls to cook like a pro and teach them the tricks of the trade along the way.
In a special two-hour episode of "Hell's Kitchen" airing Monday, May 13 (8-10 p.m.), Chef Ramsay announces that "Hell's Kitchen" will be hosting a very intimate dinner for distinguished members of the U.S. Army. Then, in another intense dinner service, Ramsay challenges both teams to design and execute their own team menus - one team falters and finds itself in a confrontational elimination round, and one more chef is sent home for good.
"MasterChef" gives talented home cooks from all walks of life the chance to showcase their skills, knowledge and immense passion to turn their culinary dreams into a reality. Ramsay is joined by Bastianich and Elliot on the "MasterChef" judging panel to put the contestants through a series of exciting challenges and elimination rounds that will turn one home cook into a culinary master. Season four of "MasterChef" will premiere Wednesday, May 22 (8 p.m.).
"Hell's Kitchen," which is airing its 11th season, currently ranks as TV's No. 1 cooking show in total viewers, while "MasterChef" finished its third season as a Top 5 summer series and was the only summer show to post year-over-year gains. In fact, this past summer, Ramsay's shows accounted for four of the Top 6 entertainment programs among Adults 18-49 in broadcast primetime and all three of the Top 3 programs among Adults 18-34.
"Like" "Hell's Kitchen" on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hellskitchen. Follow the series on Twitter at @hellskitchenfox, and follow Ramsay at @GordonRamsay.
"Like" "Kitchen Nightmares" on Facebook at www.facebook.com/kitchennightmares, and follow the series on Twitter @KnonFOX.