‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ Producers Tease ‘Showgirl Showdown’ Finale and Why Vegas Is the Perfect Setting (EXCLUSIVE)

·3-min read

As “RuPaul’s Drag Race” season 14 ends this Friday, the show will be filmed live from Las Vegas, home to the “RuPaul’s Drag Race Live” extravaganza. “Las Vegas is a city in drag. That’s why drag queens have been here before ‘Drag Race,’ they will be here after, and that’s why it was the perfect place,” say producer Tom Campbell.

The “Reunion” episode brought a Vegas level of grandeur as the season’s queens came out to reflect on their experience. The Drag Race Live stage at the Flamingo Hotel was transformed into the show’s werk room, as host RuPaul Charles was joined by Alyssa Hunter, Angeria Paris VanMicheals, Bosco, Daya Betty, Deja Skye, Deja Skye, Jorgeous, June Jambalaya, Kerri Colby, Kornbread “The Snack” Jeté, Lady Camden, Maddy Morphosis, Orion Story and Willow Pill. Also on hand were past contestants and stars of the Vegas revue including Derrick Barry, Kahanna Montrese, and Alexis Mateo.

More from Variety

World of Wonder co-founder and “RuPaul’s Drag Race” producer Randy Barbato reveals the Vegas finale has actually been in the works for a few years. Barbato says, “Pre-pandemic, when the show first opened in Vegas, [in 2020], we had planned to have the finale here, but the show had to close.”

Campbell notes that for eagle-eyed audiences, back in season 12, before the pandemic, the show was celebrating “RuPaul’s Drag Race Live!” “We introduced the Vegas songs and the Queens did that. The idea was to have the grand finale at the Vegas show, and that was scouted.”

Having the finale on location also marks a special moment for Charles who starred in his own show back in 1994 at the Sahara Hotel.

The coming together of Queens past and present is significantly essential — season 12 winner Jaida Essence Hall has been headlining the Live show since March. Barbato says, “This season’s girls can see where it can lead. They’re [going to be] on the stage that they may end up working on.”

As the show emerges from the pandemic, inviting a live audience to the finale, Barbato says, there’s an extra layer of emotion for the crew working behind the scenes. “There’s a lot of house crew from here, and all of our L.A. crew has flown in. Everyone has come together.”

What can the producers tease about the finale? Things are being changed up. Not only is there a new showgirl showdown, but there are also new songs co-produced by Leland.

Viewers already know that for the first time in Drag Race herstory, the winner will take home a $150,000 prize. The runner-up will also be rewarded with a cash prize of $50,000. There is a top-five with Angeria Paris VanMichaels, Bosco, Daya Betty, Lady Camden and Willow Pill.

Campbell reveals, “Each one does a solo show-stopping number. We’re doing a showgirl showdown. We’ll have individual performances, Ru will choose the two that impressed her the most and they will lip sync for the crown.”

Best of Variety

Sign up for Variety’s Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Click here to read the full article.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting