Project Runway is heading back to Bravo in its next season, but the fashion competition television show will have to “make it work” without some of their long-time staple judges and mentor.
On Friday, long-time host and fashion icon Heidi Klum, along with long-time series mentor Tim Gunn, announced their departure from the series. Both Klum and Gunn will, however, still be in the fashion/entertainment world as both stars are heading to Amazon Prime to produce and headline a brand new fashion reality series.
It’s unclear why Klum and Gunn are departing Project Runway after 16 seasons, however, Deadline reports that the reason is most likely contractually related. Both Klum and Gunn released heartfelt statements on their exit.
[row]“After 16 incredible seasons, I am saying ‘Auf Wiedersehen’ to Project Runway, a show that I was honored to host and help create. I am incredibly proud of the show, and it will always have a special place in my heart. I am so appreciative of the dedicated fans, and most of all, I am grateful that we could shine a light on creativity and help launch so many talented designers’ careers. I’m most excited that my journey with my dear friend and colleague, Tim Gunn, is far from over. We will be partnering with Amazon for a new show, and we’re excited for everyone to see what we’re designing next!”[/row]
Gunn echoed her gratitude for their time spent on Project Runway as well as her excitement for their future. He said:
[row]“I am grateful to Project Runway for putting me on a path I never, in my wildest dreams, thought my career would take me! I am so proud to have been a part of the groundbreaking process that showcased talented young designers as never before. Most importantly, I am indebted to our incredible fans, they are the heart and soul of what we do, and continue to inspire us to raise the bar in this arena. I’m excited for them to see what’s next, as I partner with Amazon and Heidi Klum on our next great ‘fashion’ adventure.”[/row]
Shortly after the announcement of Klum and Gunn’s departure was made public, another shockwave was sent through the Project Runway world. Long-time judge and fashion designer Zac Posen also announced his departure from the series. In a statement to Deadline, he said:
[row]“Working alongside Heidi, Nina and Tim as a judge for six seasons of Project Runway was one of the greatest experiences of my career. I will cherish the opportunity the show gave me to learn from and grow with my co-judges, the producers, crew, and designers. Runway has led to incredible opportunities and I am currently at work on some new projects that I am very excited to share with you soon. I wish the show and everyone much success always.”[/row]
With the exit of three of the show’s main stars, Bravo will have to work hard to find replacements that will draw fans back in for another season (and beyond). Klum, Gunn, and Posen are all fan-favorites on the show (particularly Gunn) and it will be interesting to see who they can find to fill those fashionable designer shoes! In a statement to Deadline, Bravo said:
[row]“Bravo is proud to bring Project Runway back where it all began, and Heidi and Tim will always be a huge part of the legacy. The series will continue its iconic impact with Bravo’s reboot for the next generation of designers and fans. We are excited to announce our new host and mentor very soon.”[/row]
What do you think about Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn and Zac Posen leaving Project Runway? Can the series “make it work,” without its star host, mentor, and judge? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.
A karaoke obsessed, craft beer enthusiast and lover of all things pop culture, Denise enjoys all facets of entertainment from Broadway to box office blockbusters. In her spare time, she enjoys photography, concerts (lots and lots of concerts), volunteering, reading and playing with her rescue kitten, Samantha (who rescued who, right?).