The TV Column: Lisa de Moraes on D.C. Edition of 'Real Housewives' Franchise

The season debut of
The season debut of "Jon & Kate Plus 8" drew nearly 10 million viewers. (By Mark Arbeit -- Tlc Via Associated Press)
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By Lisa de Moraes
Wednesday, May 27, 2009

This is our now, Washington.

Bravo network's "The Real Housewives of Fill-in-the-Blank" franchise is coming to our nation's capital.

Bravo, owned by NBC Universal, has announced that it is developing a "Real Housewives" reality series set "in the influential metropolitan region of Washington, D.C."

Expect the series to hit Bravo's lineup in about a year, Andy Cohen, the network's senior vice president of original programming and development, told the TV Column.

The new series will "tap personalities who are among Washington, D.C.'s influential players, cultural connoisseurs, fashion sophisticates and philanthropic leaders -- the people who rub elbows with the most prominent people in the country," the network announced.

About 25 housewives are already on tape, and the producers will now "lock down on" the lucky handful who will make it to air.

These women must be very "brand-specific," Cohen said -- meaning "wealthy, independent, strong, outspoken."

The secret of the "Real Housewives" franchise, Cohen said, is that each show portrays "the same type of women," but the four existing shows nonetheless manage to make the women "almost look like they live on four different planets."

Here are the planets the show has already visited:

Orange County: "A lot of big blond hair and big boobs," Cohen observed.

New York: "Less blond hair, and the boobs are more to scale."

Atlanta: "You're dealing with an entirely different operation."

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