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By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
When Spike TV announced that Bellator Fighting Championships would be coming to the network in 2013, one of the things that had been openly discussed was a reality show for the fight promotion. Having already hosted the successful Ultimate Fighter series with the UFC, along with a host of other "reality-based" programming, it was a sensible and expected idea.
Now, they've taken another step closer to that with an official announcement on Tuesday of a Bellator reality series next year.
The network will team up with Bertram van Munster, an eight-time Emmy Award winner and the co-creator and executive producer of the long running Amazing Race reality series, for the new show. The programming will premiere in 2013, along with Bellator's move to the network, though no details of the program have yet been revealed.
"Some of the most physically-gifted and fascinating athletes in the world fight in Bellator, and I believe they make ideal subjects for an innovative new non-scripted series," Van Munster said in a press release regarding the show.
"The concept of this ground-breaking new series will broadly appeal to not only mixed martial arts fans, but to reality show enthusiasts as well," added Sharon Levy, the executive vice president of original programming for Spike TV.
Penick's Analysis: This isn't likely to be a clone of The Ultimate Fighter, but it will be very interesting to see what type of a show they come up with for Bellator and its fighters. Will it be following tournament fighters as they compete throughout a season? Will it feature unheralded fighters in some other capacity? Will it be a look behind the scenes into the lives of fighters, a la the UFC's Primetime series? Will it be something entirely different? We'll find out later this year to early next year as they put things in place, but Bellator will be positioned well into 2013 to come out of the gate strong on Spike TV.
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Jamie Penick, editor-in-chief
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