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Paula Deen's 'MasterChef' appearance: What will Fox do?

June 22, 2013|By Rene Lynch
  • Paula Deen on the set of Fox's "MasterChef."
Paula Deen on the set of Fox's "MasterChef." (Fox )

Paula Deen's firing by Food Network puts another network -- Fox -- in a pickle.

Deen is slated to return for a guest stint on Fox's hit reality TV cooking show, "MasterChef," in the upcoming weeks. In fact, the show kicked off with much fanfare about the celebuchefs who will be stopping by this season, Deen among them.

Representatives for "MasterChef" said there would be no comment Friday about Deen's appearance. They declined to identify the run date for the episode in which Deen is slated to appear -- or to confirm that the episode will go forward as planned.

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Deen's appearance has already been shot. In fact, chef Gordon Ramsay crowed to TV Guide about Deen's appearance when he offered viewers a preview of the season: "Paula Deen [is] back on. Huge success last year with her. And she's great. I wouldn't get on the wrong side of her. She's dynamic, feisty, tenacious but bloody good."

It all sets the stage for a potentially cringe-worthy show in which Deen sashays onto the TV screen with her "Hey Y'all" Southern charm just mere weeks after she was fired by Food Network in the wake of a contoversy over her use of racially charged language.

Will audiences stay away in protest? Or will Deen prove to be a ratings magnet, pulling in people who aren't "MasterChef" watchers but are curiosity seekers?

Time will tell.

Deen was fired Friday afternoon after an uproar over her use of a racial epithet -- the N-word -- and other racially charged comments. Deen has said she does not tolerate hate and said the media has misportrayed her and her comments.

The comments came to life this week as part of court documents in a lawsuit involving Deen. Earlier in the week, her attorney said Deen was looking forward to telling her side of the story in court.

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