Top Chef Canada Announces Actor Lisa Ray As Host For Season Two Of The Hit Series

New Season Premieres March 12, 2012 at 10pm ET/PT on Food Network Canada

For more information about Top Chef Canada including high resolution photos visit our media site at: www.shawmediatv.ca

TORONTO, Nov. 16, 2011 /CNW/ - Food Network Canada and Insight Productions announce that actress, model, host and philanthropist Lisa Ray (Water, Bollywood Hollywood) will host the second season of Top Chef Canada. The first season of the Canadian adaptation of the international smash hit premiered in April 2011 to unprecedented audience numbers making it the top rated series in Food Network Canada's history. Top Chef Canada season two - which sees Canada's top culinary talent face-off for the grand prize of $100,000 sponsored by Kruger Sponge Towels, a GE Monogram kitchen worth $30,000, and the coveted title of Canada's Top Chef - premieres March 12, 2012 at 10pm ET/PT on Food Network Canada. Lisa Ray will replace season one's host Thea Andrews who recently celebrated the birth of her second child.

"We are thrilled to welcome Lisa Ray on board as the host of Top Chef Canada. As the channel's top rated series, we expect to see some tough competition between the chefs in season two and Lisa Ray is the perfect host to lead the charge," says Barb Williams, Senior Vice President of Content, Shaw Media.

"It's amazing to have Lisa Ray as part of the Top Chef Canada family.  Lisa has sampled cultures and cuisines in her travels around the world and she brings that experience and sense of adventure to the judges' table each week," says Mark Lysakowski, Supervising Producer, Insight Productions.

Canadian Lisa Ray is a well known actress, former model, host, and philanthropist who was raised in Toronto by an Indian father and Polish mother. An iconic figure in India and abroad, Ray is a successful cover model and award-winning actress. With starring roles in Bollywood Hollywood and Water to name a few, Ray has achieved overwhelming success internationally and locally appearing in over 27 film and television titles. Her hosting experience spans from her own entertainment show in India to co-hosting award shows such as The Genies and The Giller Prize. She was present at the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival for her starring role in Cooking with Stella. In 2009, Ray also publicly shared her diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma. Her work for this cause earned her the Voice Achievers Award in 2009 and the Hope Award in 2010. Ray also helped raise funds to establish the first research chair for Multiple Myeloma at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto. Her latest business venture includes partnering with the co-owners of Moksha Yoga Brampton, which opened earlier this year.

"I am a big fan of the Top Chef series and thrilled to help spotlight some of the amazing culinary talent right here in my hometown," said Lisa Ray, host, Top Chef Canada. "I'm looking forward to a challenging yet delicious season."

Viewers who missed season one of Top Chef Canada can watch episodes online at topchefcanada.ca. More information about the eagerly anticipated second season of Top Chef Canada, premiering March 12, 2012, at 10pm ET/PT on Food Network Canada, will be revealed in the coming months.

Top Chef is the Emmy® Award-winning series which originally launched on NBCUniversal-owned Bravo. The series is currently in its 11th season in the US and is a worldwide format hit with local versions airing in territories as diverse as France, Finland and the Middle East.

Food Network Canada is a Shaw Media network.

About Shaw Communications Inc.
Shaw Communications Inc. is a diversified communications and media company, providing consumers with broadband cable television, High-Speed Internet, Home Phone, telecommunications services (through Shaw Business), satellite direct-to-home services (through Shaw Direct) and engaging programming content (through Shaw Media). Shaw serves 3.4 million customers, through a reliable and extensive fibre network. Shaw Media operates one of the largest conventional television networks in Canada, Global Television, and 18 specialty networks including HGTV Canada, Food Network Canada, History Television and Showcase. Shaw is traded on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges and is included in the S&P/TSX 60 Index (Symbol: TSX - SJR.B, NYSE - SJR). For more information about Shaw, please visit www.shaw.ca.

About Insight Productions
Insight Production Company Ltd, headed by John Brunton & Barbara Bowlby has become an industry leader in the creative development, financing and production of highly rated television programs and cutting edge multiplatform content for the global market in every genre. Since 1979, it has been recognized for its reputation for quality as the recipient of numerous international awards, including multiple Gemini's. The company has created thousands of hours of groundbreaking television that continues to be broadcast over major networks worldwide. Broadcast Magazine International claims that "when it comes to adapting formats for Canadian audiences there is one producer who appears to have the Midas touch." Recent hits include Insight's original format Battle of the Blades, Intervention Canada, Canada's Got Talent launching in spring 2012, the JUNO Awards, Canada's national music award show.  Insight also just began production on the second season of their original new format Canada Sings for Global.  For more information visit www.insighttv.com.

SOURCE Food Network

For further information:

Cathy Kurzbock
Publicist, Food Network Canada
416-966-7501
cathy.kurzbock@shawmedia.ca
Jaclyn Atwood-Powell
Publicity Manager, Lifestyle Channels
416-966-7293
jaclyn.atwood@shawmedia.ca
Susan Stafford
Publicist, UNIT:PR Inc.
416-506-1238
susan@unitpr.com
Monique Camenzuli
Publicist, UNIT:PR Inc.
416-506-1277
monique@unitpr.com

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