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Corporate Press Release Theater: Runway Pays Some Legal Bills

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Looks like all that litigation was worth it for Lifetime. Though the return of Project Runway was delayed by the wrangling in the court as the cable network wrested the reality show from Bravo, last night’s season premiere was the highest rated ever, for Runway or any other Lifetime series, drawing over 4.2 million viewers. Excerpts from the network’s crowing after the jump:

The eagerly anticipated premiere of Lifetime Television’s Emmy®-nominated and Peabody® Award-winning hit series Project Runway generated a 3.2 rating among Women 18-49 (a 28% increase over the series’ season five premiere) and a 3.3 rating in Households (up 32% from the season five premiere) on Thursday, August 20, at 10PM ET/PT, according to Nielsen Research. The Show beat all cable competition in key demos and made the program’s return to television the highest-rated premiere for the series ever and in the Network’s 25-year history, including Women 18-34 (3.8) and Adults 18-34 (2.5). The Program averaged more than 4.2 million Total Viewers and was the highest rated competition reality series premiere on cable this year.

Project Runway’s all-new companion series, Models of the Runway, which premiered at 11PM ET/PT, generated a 1.4 rating among Women 18-49 and a 1.6 Household rating, averaging 1.9 million Total Viewers. Lifetime kicked off the launches of Project Runway and Models of the Runway with the two-hour special, Project Runway: All-Star Challenge. The spirited competition, which featured eight fan favorites and Project Runway superstars competing against one another, premiered at 8PM ET/PT and started the evening in style, securing a 2.2 rating in Women 18-49 and a 2.3 Household rating, as well as averaging 2.9 million Total Viewers.

Incidentally, 1.9 million for Models of the Freaking Runway is not too shabby either. I suspect we’ll soon see Life Coaches of the Personal Trainers of the Makeup Artists of the Models of the Runway.