Zac Posen is saying Auf Wiedersehen to “Project Runway,” too.
The designer said he will not return as a judge when the fashion reality series makes its big relaunch on Bravo next year. His announcement on Friday comes hours after the news “Project Runway” staples Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn are exiting the series for a new fashion reality show with Amazon Prime Video.
“Working alongside Heidi, Nina and Tim as a judge for six seasons of ‘Project Runway’ was one of the greatest experiences of my career,” Posen said in a statement to TheWrap on Friday. “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.”
Bravo did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment on Posen’s exit.
“Project Runway,” which was originally produced by the now-defunct Weinstein Company, is moving from Lifetime back to Bravo, Andy Cohen announced at NBC’s Upfronts presentation back in May. The reality series returns to its original network as part of a deal between Bravo Media LLC and Lantern Entertainment LLC. The latter company earned approval from Delaware bankruptcy court on May 8 to acquire the assets of The Weinstein Company. The two companies have also agreed to develop unscripted projects for Bravo and other networks under NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment.
Klum and Gunn also announced Friday that they will not return to “Project Runway,” but will be teaming up for a new series on Amazon.
“After 16 incredible seasons, I am saying ‘Auf Wiedersehen’ to ‘Project Runway,’ a show that I was honored to host and help create,” Klum said in a statement. “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!”
Gunn added: “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.”
Amazon is keeping details on the series under wraps for now, but says it will “continue Klum and Gunn’s 14-year relationship and a commitment to making fashion accessible to a wide audience.”
The series will be a fresh take in the reality space and will appeal to a global audience who are entertained by competition, storytelling, and authenticity, according to Amazon. Additionally, Amazon Fashion will create a shoppable experience for viewers. This intersection of content, commerce, and technology is perfectly suited to the cord cutter generation and streaming consumers.