Wannabe catwalk stars face 'Irish Tyra' as new show ready for take-off
TOUGH TALKS: Auditions for Ireland's Next Top Model set to begin
IRELAND'S top catwalk queens may be in for some stiff competition before the year is out.
The Herald can exclusively reveal that Ireland may soon have a version of America's Next Top Model.
Wracked by months of controversy, negotiations to secure the local rights and create an Irish version of the show are now said to be at an advanced stage.
Speculation is mounting as to who will be tough enough to be the 'Irish Tyra' by sending home a different girl every week and laying down the law as a judge on the show.
Gorgeous model and former Miss Ireland, Andrea Roche is head of the posse being tipped for the position after the success of this year's first Irish Miss Universe pageant screened by TV3.
It is believed, Screentime Shinawil, will be given the green light to begin auditions to find participants for the hit show in the coming weeks.
The company who created and produced, You're a Star for RTE has not had an easy time however, as according to a source "They've been in months of tough negotiations to secure the trademark from creator's CBS Paramount."
Not alone that, but company CEO Larry Bass was also forced to go on Joe Duffy's Liveline show last month to defend the company's rights to the programme, when controversial modelling agency, Eiremodels, run by Mark Townley claimed to have already begun filming for the show.
Speaking of the problems he encountered, Mr Bass said, "We've been involved in television and reality television for many years and never yet have we charged people to go on a show.
"It certainly hasn't made the job any easier for people who are endeavouring to do an official version of this show and I believe it has tainted the brand in a way," he added.
It is thought the Irish version of the show will eventually be screened by TV3, which was also forced to refute claims made by model boss, Townley on Liveline.
A spokesperson for the television station said, "We know for a fact Next Top Model has not been trademarked in Ireland yet and we are aware of the company who's in negotiations with CBS paramount to secure the local rights." The popular programme dubbed the Pop Idol of the modelling world was created by supermodel Tyra Banks. The show is now in its 10th cycle of the series in the States and has already spawned similar series' in both Britain and Australia.