‘Celebrity Apprentice’ 2011: Trump project dims Star’s team; who got fired? — This week’s task on Donald Trump’s Celebrity Apprentice dimmed the power of Star Jones’ female team, A.S.A.P. The women lost the challenge, resulting in one of them getting fired in the boardroom. What was the challenge that led to their downfall, and who got fired?
Note: See the results for the May 1, 2011 episode of Celebrity Apprentice here, ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ 2011: Trump cut off by Obama, loses, gains – May 1, 2011.
This week, the Trump organization sponsored the challenge. The task for the three remaining men and five women was to design a conceptual four-page pictorial campaign promoting the Trump Hotel Collection. Since the product involved Trump properties, each team expressed feeling even more pressure and responsibility than when their tasks involve other companies.
Criteria for judging were: creativity and originality, brand messaging, and overall presentation.
Project managers were John Rich for Backbone (the men’s team) and Star Jones for the women (A.S.A.P.). The men said they were at a disadvantage not only because they had two fewer teammates than the women’s team but also because none of them had stayed in very many Trump properties. Star Jones admitted to enjoying a luxurious lifestyle and said she had stayed in many luxury hotels.
In the Q&A session with Ivanka Trump and another executive, the teams were told to avoid using images that are too familiar with hotel ads — such as pictures of service personnel ready to wait on customers. Teams were also told that a key phrase to the brand is “Live the Life.”
The men chose a picture of a butler and several images of the respective hotels in the collection. John Rich wrote a lot of text that most people flipping through a magazine probably would not read. The women used pictures of “ladies who lunch,” a bubble bath with rose petals featuring teammate and model, April Dworaczyk, as well as key words above photos that made the pages look cluttered and too busy.
The judges said both projects failed; there was no winner, and the choice came between the lesser of two evils. They did not like that the men used images they were specifically told to avoid. The men also failed to put a phone number or website on their pictorial so that potential customers could contact the hotels. They didn’t like that the women’s pictorial looked too “cheesy,” like an ad for a club that would be placed under the windshield wipers of cars.
Judges preferred the men’s presentation where they told personal stories; they thought it was more heartfelt. The women’s presentation, they thought however, was too scripted, and the chorus of teammates standing behind Star Jones spouting off adjectives one word or phrase at a time came off as strange.
In the end, the women’s project was chosen as the “loser,” leaving the men’s team “winning” by default. That meant that John Rich’s charity, St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, received $20,000. Mr. Rich pointed out that he had earned over $646,000 so far for his charity on the show.
In the boardroom, La Toya Jackson and NeNe Leakes were chosen to come in with project manager Star Jones. Ms. Jones knew they had a history of not getting along because during the task she allowed them time to work things out so they could work together. She strategized that she and NeNe Leakes would gang up on La Toya Jackson and get her fired, and that’s just what happened.
In the exit comments in the taxi, Ms. Jackson said, “It was a wonderful experience; I truly enjoyed working with Mr. Trump. As far as my teammates were concerned, that’s a totally different story. I think Star Jones is a very manipulative person. I think she’s very conniving; she’s very evil. It doesn’t matter if she has to lie, cheat, or steal.”
She continued, “Truthfully, I think Mr. Trump made a mistake. I am not a weak player. It’s not a good feeling to get fired when you know you have so much more to offer.”
Celebrity Apprentice airs on NBC Sunday evenings from 9 to 11 p.m. ET.
PHOTOS: See the cast of Celebrity Apprentice here.
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