Roman, the author of cookbooks such as “Nothing Fancy,” will launch a cooking program for the CNN-backed video hub, which is set to launch in the first quarter of 2022. Episodes will show her both in and out of the kitchen, teaching recipes and also venturing out to learn about the ingredients, people and the stories behind what she prepares.
More from Variety
“Alison’s unique style and tone make her a perfect addition to our CNN Plus line-up,” said Amy Entelis, CNN Worldwide’s executive vice president for talent and content development for CNN Original Series and Films, in a statement. “From vinegar chicken to shallot pasta – we are thrilled that Alison will share the stories behind her signature recipes with the subscribers of CNN Plus.”
Roman’s new project with the subscription-based video service highlights one of its key areas of focus. Roman, a former editorial staffer for Bon Appetit and The New York Times, joins Eva Longoria, the actress, who will host a six-part documentary series about Mexican cuisine. Executives believe food, culture and travel represent topics that will draw potential subscribers to the new outlet, according to Andrew Morse, the executive vice president and chief digital officer of CNN Worldwide who is overseeing the launch of the streaming venue. “We are not going to replicate the way we cover the news on CNN,” he told Variety in a recent interview. “We have a great product on CNN that serves our audience. What you will see from CNN Plus will be distinctive and different.”
“I could not be more thrilled to be partnering with CNN Plus on this project,” Roman said in a statement. “I’ve been dreaming about bringing a new sort of cooking and food show to life for years and I can’t think of any place better to make it a reality.” The series is expected to be made available later in the year.
The new program shows CNN working more closely with Zero Point Zero Productions, the media company behind Anthony Bourdain’s “Parts Unknown,” one of CNN’s most popular series in recent years. The production house also works on CNN’s “United Shades of America,” led by W. Kamau Bell.
Roman emerged from a minor controversy in 2020, drawing criticism on social media after making some remarks about lines of products backed by Chrissy Teigen and Marie Kondo. She apologized, but also decided to leave The New York Times, where she was writing a column, in December of that year.
In addition to her books, Roman produces “Home Movies,” a cooking series on YouTube, as well as a newsletter called “a newsletter.” Before joining the editorial world, she worked as a pastry chef at places such as Quince in San Francisco and Momofuku Milk Bar in New York. Originally from Los Angeles, she is now based in New York.
Executive Producers are Alison Roman with Lydia Tenaglia and Chris Collins of Zero Point Zero Productions. Amy Entelis and Lyle Gamm are Executive Producers for CNN Original Series. Jon Adler is Supervising Producer for CNN Original Series.
Best of Variety