Oprah Winfrey has brought eight people one step closer to reaching their ultimate goal- having their own talk show.
Winfrey announced the eight finalists in the online contest to be a contestant on “Your OWN Show: Oprah’s Search for the Next TV Star.”
More than 9,500 people submitted audition videos, earning more than 143 million votes.
Apparently, Oprah was so pleased with the turnout, she extended the invitation to the top five and an additional three winners.
One of whom, Zach Anner, a Texas comedian with cerebral palsy, earned celebrity endorsements from John Mayer, Perez Hilton and David Hasselhoff for his audition reel. Making some skeptical about how accurate the rankings were.
1. Jacqueline Wattimo of Waterton, MA with 9,360,096 votes
2. Dr. Phyllis Tucker-Wicks of Tampa, FL with 8,453,803 votes
3. Stacia Pierce of East Lansing, MI with 7,604,501 votes
4. Kornelius Bascombe of Raleigh, NC with 5,856,075 votes
5. Dr. Tony Roach of Abilene, TX with 3,842,648 votes
6. Maria Holloway of Miami, FL with 3,796,219 votes
7. Zach Anner of Austin, TX with 3,484,018 votes
8. Jasbina Ahluwalia of Oak Brook, IL with 2,728,232 votes
The eight finalists now head to Los Angeles, along with 2 the in-person audition winners who were picked at events held throughout the U.S. The top 10 will compete on Oprah’s new network next January in challenges like screen tests, interview bookings and pitching story ideas.
The winner gets a six-episode contract to host their own show on OWN.
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