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Julianne, Derek Hough team with Starz for ballroom dancing drama

February 26, 2013|By Yvonne Villarreal
  • Julianne Hough with her brother, dancer Derek Hough, at the post-premiere party for "Safe Haven."
Julianne Hough with her brother, dancer Derek Hough, at the post-premiere… (Chris Pizzello / Invision/AP )

Dancing with the Starz?

The network announced Tuesday that it has partnered with dancer/singer/actress Julianne Hough and her dancer/actor brother Derek Hough--both of whom have graced the "Dancing With the Stars" stage--to develop the new original series "Blackpool," set in the world of international competitive ballroom dancing.

"Derek and I are thrilled to be working with Starz," Julianne Hough said in a statement. We feel that their passion and the style, and quality of their programming provide the perfect environment to capture the true essence of this world that Derek and I know so well and means so much to us."

The siblings will executive produce and serve as head choreographers for the series. The series will revolve around the prestigious annual ballroom competition in Blackpool, England, and will explore the dark side of the sport, a premise that has Derek Hough really amped.

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“I cannot wait to give audiences a fictionalized view of the world that I experienced growing up,” he said in a statement.  “Viewers are going to see a twisted, sexy, funny, dark and passionate side of the drama and politics in the world of ballroom dance that delves deeper than spray tans and sequins.”

Julianne Hough has been keeping busy as of late, most recently heading Nicholas Sparks' latest cry fest, "Safe Haven," alongside Josh Duhamel. Though the film didn't display her singing or dancing abilities like past projects ("Burlesque," "Rock of Ages"), "Blackpool" would seem a way to keep at least the dancing muscles going.

Derek--the only three-time champion in "Dancing With the Stars" history, recently took a season off from the ABC competition to film his first feature film, "Cobu #D: New York Nights."

“The world of ballroom dance has captivated millions of people around the world, and there are no more recognizable superstars in this arena than Julianne and Derek,” said Carmi Zlotnik, managing director of Starz, in a statement.  “Their experiences growing up in this highly competitive world are riveting and also shocking.  There is much more to uncover than what we see on the dance floor.”

The network is largely known for its epic period dramas such as "Spartacus," which will end its run later this season, and dark content ("Boss," "Magic City"). Should things pan out for "Blackpool," it might help the male-centric network broaden out a bit. 

Yvonne Villarreal

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