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Oprah Winfrey's annual "Favorite Things" episodes may have ended, but this holiday season, the TV legend is giving her fans something even better: a new talk show! Oprah, 57, will ring in the New Year with the premiere of Oprah's Next Chapter, her first weekly primetime series on the OWN Network. Watch the preview below!
With Next Chapter, Winfrey will take the basic format of her long-running daytime chat show and break it wide open. Instead of being confined to a studio, Winfrey will take extended trips to experience her subjects' lives and interview them on their own turf. In a press statement, Winfrey enthuses that it is "so energizing" to get out of her chair and explore "new people, new places and new ideas."
"I sat at the dinner table with a Hasidic Jewish family and tried to explain to the children who have never seen a television what TV is... can you imagine?" says Winfrey. "I fire-walked with Tony Robbins -- never pictured myself doing that! I celebrated the power of God and community with Joel Osteen and I'm planning a trip with Deepak Chopra to India, where I've never been."
In the first season of Next Chapter, Oprah will also explore the after-effects of the Haitian earthquake with actor-activist Sean Penn, visit the famously reclusive George Lucas at Skywalker Ranch and have a slumber party at chef Paula Deen's Georgia mansion.
The two-hour premiere episode, which airs on New Year's Day, will feature a revealing interview with Aerosmith frontman and American Idol judge Steven Tyler. But even with all the bold-faced names, the real star is obviously Oprah herself.
"(The show is) like looking at the world through Oprah's eyes," says Harpo President Sheri Salata, "and it's a beautiful view."
The OWN Network launched in January 2011 but has yet to produce a real hit. Could Oprah's new show be it?