In the premiere of Project Runway, the competition begins with some twists right out of the airport gate. With luggage still in tow, the designers are greeted at the iconic TWA Hotel at JFK airport ready to take flight with their first challenge: to create an innovative look inspired by humanity's continued push into space exploration. In a Runway first, these unfamiliar designers have to pair up and collaborate to make cohesive pieces that blow away the judges or they are out. Fans will also get a chance to own a piece of the designer creations when they vote on the outfits they like best.
Eager to give aspiring designers a chance to break into the notoriously difficult-to-crack fashion world, supermodel Heidi Klum will once again head a panel of industry luminaries, including top women's and men's wear designer Michael Kors and Elle Magazine fashion director Nina Garcia, who will serve as judges and industry mentors charged with selecting and molding the budding designers. There will also be guest judges each week based on the specific challenge. Tim Gunn, Chair of the Parsons The New School For Design, will return to guide the contestants through each of their challenges.
The winning designer will walk away with $100,000 in seed money to help them launch their own line. The winner's designs will be featured in a spread in ELLE, photographed by the magazine's world-renowned Publication Director, Gilles Bensimon. They will also receive a mentorship from the Banana Republic Design Team.