'The Ultimate Fighter,' A 13-Episode Series Goes Behind-The-Scenes of the Exciting World of UFC, to Premiere On Spike TV January '05

Monday June 28, 11:44 am ET

Craig Piligian (Co-Executive Producer Survivor I, II and III) to Produce New Series


NEW YORK, June 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Spike TV and Ultimate Fighting Championship® announced today a partnership to develop and produce a one- hour, 13-part reality series that will provide an inside look at the process to locate, develop and train the professional Ultimate Fighters(TM) of the future. The new show, The Ultimate Fighter(TM), will premiere in January, 2005.

The series will be shot in Las Vegas at the UFC Training Center this summer and fall. Twenty athletes from all around the country will be selected to participate. Craig Piligian of Pilgrim Films and Television (Survivor I, II, and III, American Chopper, American Hot Rod and American Casino) is the show's creator and executive producer. Robert Riesenberg, (executive producer of NBC's The Restaurant) of Full Circle Entertainment serves as executive producer as well.

"The Ultimate Fighter will reveal the passions, dedication and training it takes to break into UFC® events, and it will go behind the scenes into the business world of professional combat sports. This show will be the absolute in fighting reality TV," said Piligian.

"The dedicated, fearless athletes competing in The Ultimate Fighter will set this show apart from other reality series," said Jim Burns, Senior Vice President, Sports and Specials, Spike TV. "The behind-the-scenes look at their lifestyles and intense training regimen will resonate with our audience and fits in with our brand identity."

With new rules and regulations, the UFC®, is licensed in various states including Nevada, Florida, and New Jersey. Along with growing the business, the UFC is focused on protecting the combatants, and are proud that there has never been a serious injury or death in the history of the franchise. It is of interest to note all UFC athletes are highly-trained and many are college- educated. Sports pedigrees include the Olympics, the Pan American Games and NCAA Division I All-Americans.

Robert Riesenberg is president and CEO of Full Circle Entertainment, a New York Company. Full Circle Entertainment is an independent production company specializing in developing and producing programming that service the marketing needs of advertisers. Full Circle Entertainment is a wholly owned unit Omnicom Media Group, which is part of the Omnicom Group.

Fans are being asked to check with http://www.ufc.tv for more information about The Ultimate Fighter.

Spike TV, the first network for men, is available in 87 million homes and is a division of MTV Networks. MTV Networks, a division of Viacom International Inc. (NYSE: VIA - News, VIA.B - News), owns and operates the following television programming services -- MTV: MUSIC TELEVISION, MTV2, mtvU, VHI, NICKELODEON, NICK at NITE, COMEDY CENTRAL, TV LAND, SPIKE TV, CMT, NOGGIN, MTV INTERNATIONAL and THE DIGITAL SUITE FROM MTV NETWORKS, a package of 12 digital services, all of which are trademarks of MTV Networks. MTV Networks also has licensing agreements, joint ventures, and syndication deals whereby all of its programming services can be seen worldwide.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship® brand of mixed martial arts is the world's premier series of MMA events. Owned and operated by Zuffa, LLC, and headquartered in Las Vegas, Nev., UFC® fight programs feature six live pay- per-view events annually through cable and satellite providers. In addition to its U.S. distribution, UFC® fight shows are distributed internationally through WOWOW, Inc. in Japan, Globosat in Brazil, Sky Network in New Zealand and Premiere Network in Germany. Zuffa, LLC licenses the distribution of UFC video games through Take 2 Interactive and its fight show DVDs through Studioworks Entertainment, a Ventura Distribution company. "Ultimate Fighting Championship," "Ultimate Fighting," "Ultimate Fighter," "UFC," "Submission," "As Real As It Gets" and the Octagon cage design are registered trademarks or trademarks owned exclusively by Zuffa, LLC in the U.S., Japan and other jurisdictions. All other marks that may be referenced herein belong to their respective holders.