Emmys tap reality TV hosts

Klum, Mandel, Probst, Seacrest to emcee

This year’s Emmycast is embracing unscripted shows, enlisting all the nominated reality TV hosts to emcee the kudos.

Tom Bergeron (“Dancing With the Stars”), Heidi Klum (“Project Runway”), Howie Mandel (“Deal or No Deal”), Jeff Probst (“Survivor”) and Ryan Seacrest (“American Idol”) have been tapped to emcee the 60th annual Primetime Emmys, set to air Sept. 21 on ABC.

With Bergeron, Klum, Mandel, Probst and Seacrest all up for the inaugural reality-host Emmy, this year’s kudocast will be the first in which an entire category of competitors hosts the show together.

It’s the second consecutive year for Seacrest, who hosted the Primetime Emmys solo last year on Fox.

Emmy producer Ken Ehrlich said he’d been kicking around the idea of inviting the category nominees to host the kudofest for months but wanted to take a look at who wound up getting nominated before committing to the idea.

“When those five names were read, all of a sudden it was absolutely perfect,” Ehrlich said. “The four networks are represented, as well as cable. In that sense it was great. And in the sense that each one of those individuals does something a little different than the other, we have five distinct personalities. Plus, they all like each other.”

Webs usually avoid showcasing rival network talent as hosts, but Ehrlich said ABC Entertainment prexy Steve McPherson approved of the idea.

“This is what these guys do,” Ehrlich said of the hosts. “They’re all very good at it in their individual ways.”

Ehrlich also noted that, combined, the hosts’ series command a large percentage of the viewing audience. As for how he may use the five hosts, Ehrlich said he’s still working out those specifics.

“You’ll see them all together at some point, and they’ll carry different parts of the show,” he said. “If we can be imaginative in the execution as I think this idea is, we have a pretty good chance of entertaining the viewer and keeping an entertaining show for the people at the Nokia Theater.”

Ehrlich said he’s also looking at possible roles on the show for ABC latenight host Jimmy Kimmel.

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