As you may have heard, the former host of The Celebrity Apprentice has embarked on a new career in politics, although he was previously famous for a whole bunch of other stuff, too. Now, someone else who used to be in politics -- while also being famous for a bunch of other stuff -- has taken over as the host of The Celebrity Apprentice.
NBC cut ties with Donald Trump, the longtime host of The Apprentice and The Celebrity Apprentice, shortly after he announced in June of last year that he was running for president. The network announced last September that Arnold Schwarzenegger, the international movie star who himself served two terms as governor of California, would take over for Trump as host of a new season of Celebrity Apprentice. Now, we have our first look at the former Terminator in the boardroom.
The teaser, in the tradition of The Terminator, depicts a bunch of machines putting together what looks like a giant robot, which slowly begins to take the form of Schwarzenegger. After the on-screen slogan “We’re building a new boss,” Arnold himself delivers the line: “Let’s get down to business.”
The series, which returns in January under the name The New Celebrity Apprentice, will feature Schwarzenegger as the “CEO,” leading a cast that includes Boy George, Eric Dickerson, Carson Kressley, Jon Lovitz, Vince Neil, Snooki, and Carnie Wilson. As with the Trump-hosted incarnation, the celebrities will be competing on behalf of charitable causes. Warren Buffett, Steve Ballmer, and Tyra Banks will serve as advisors. And the show is filming in Los Angeles, rather than New York as the Trump version did.
Schwarzenegger’s celebrity and movie stardom have lasted for nearly four decades, and he’s never before starred on a weekly television series, so it will be interesting to see what the response to this series is. If audiences are willing to still buy Schwarzenegger as an action star even though he’s in his late 60s, it’s not hard to imagine them believing in him as a boss.
This is a big change for the long-running series, which has a lot riding on it for NBC. The last time an Apprentice season was attempted without Trump, it was the unsuccessful, one-and-done Apprentice season that was hosted by Martha Stewart. There's a good chance that Schwarzenegger will have a broader kind of appeal that will bring new and old viewers alike back to the series.
The New Celebrity Apprentice is scheduled to debut on NBC this January.