FOX is presenting the ultimate celebrity social experiment, Special Forces: The Ultimate Test (Working Title), an all-new series in which household names endure some of the harshest, most grueling challenges from the playbook of the actual Special Forces selection process.
There are no votes, and no eliminations – just survival. These celebrities, who are so used to being in the spotlight, quickly learn the meaning of “no guts, no glory” – and no glam. The series debuts in January 2023.
The 16 celebrity recruits include Danny Amendola, Mel B, Hannah Brown, Tyler Florence, Kate Gosselin, Dwight Howard, Montell Jordan, Gus Kenworthy, Nastia Liukin, and Carli Lloyd.
Also on board are Beverley Mitchell, Kenya Moore, Mike Piazza, Dr. Drew Pinsky, Anthony Scaramucci and Jamie Lynn Spears.
“Special Forces: The Ultimate Test puts celebrities you know and love through the most pure and authentic test of endurance that I have ever seen. In many ways, it is more about mental strength than physical strength,” said Rob Wade, President, Alternative Entertainment & Specials.
“It’s an eye-opening glimpse into the most intense training in the world and gives a taste of the grit and bravery our armed forces show on a daily basis, which was a life-changing experience for these celebrities.”
Selection for the Special Forces is a test unlike any other. Sixteen celebrities from all genres will take on, and try to survive, demanding training exercises led by Directing Staff (DS) agents Rudy Reyes, Mark “Billy” Billingham, Jason “Foxy” Fox and Remi Adeleke, an elite team of ex-special forces operatives.
In this unique series, the only way for these recruits to leave is to give up on their own accord, through failure or potential injury, or by force from the DS. Viewers will see the recruits face the harshest of environments that simulate the highly classified selection process, pushing themselves in a way they have never been challenged before.
SPECIAL FORCES: THE ULTIMATE TEST RECRUITS
During his 13-year career in the NFL, Danny Amendola was a model of consistency and leadership during his stints with the St. Louis Rams, New England Patriots, Miami Dolphins, Detroit Lions and Houston Texans.
He won two Super Bowl titles with New England, in 2014 and 2016, and was part of the All-Decade Team for the Patriots, for whom he also returned kicks. In 2021, he appeared in the documentary short “Life Got Crazy,” and he will soon star as himself in the upcoming film “Eighty For Brady.”
Melanie Brown MBE, a.k.a. Mel B., began her career with the pop phenomenon that spearheaded the Girl Power movement, The Spice Girls, which is the most successful girl group of all time with 100 million records sold. As “Scary Spice,” she became one of the most recognizable women in the world, as she went on to carve out a global career as a television entertainer, theatre performer, movie actress and author.
In 2019, she reunited with The Spice Girls on tour – the most successful tour of that year. 2021 marks the 25th anniversary of the group and their first massive hit, “Wannabe.” After The Spice Girls split in 2000, Mel B. went on to appear as a judge on “America’s Got Talent” and “The X Factor” (UK). Additionally, she appeared in “Lip Sync” (UK), “The X Factor” (Britain and Australia), “Dancing With The Stars” (Australia), “America’s Got Talent,” “The Masked Singer” (Australia) and “Queen Of The Universe.”
She also starred in the film “The Seat Filler,” and has appeared on Broadway in “Rent” and most recently as “Roxie Hart” in “Chicago,” winning massive acclaim from audiences and critics alike. In 2018, her explosive book, “Brutally Honest,” was published and rose to the top of the best-seller charts, turning Mel B. into a powerful figurehead for victims of abuse everywhere.
She was made Patron of Women’s Aid in 2018, and in 2019 was invited by the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, to help her work on a parliamentary bill designed to aid other victims. This year, Brown was awarded an MBE by the Queen for her services to survivors of domestic abuse. She is the mother of three girls and lives in her hometown of Leeds, United Kingdom.
Hannah Brown is a television personality, lifestyle expert and New York Times best-selling author. Born and raised in Tuscaloosa, AL, Brown became Miss Alabama USA in 2018 and used her platform to advocate for mental health awareness, voicing her own experience of battling depression and anxiety during her teenage years.
Following her time as Miss Alabama USA, Brown appeared on Season 23 of “The Bachelor” and went on to become a fan favorite, appearing as “The Bachelorette” on Season 15 of the franchise – even winning a People’s Choice Award for her role on the show. She next appeared on Season 28 of “Dancing with the Stars,” where she won the competition.
Brown published a personal memoir in 2021, “God Bless This Mess,” which became an instant New York Times best seller. She followed up her first book with the publication of a companion journal in 2022, “God Bless This Messy Journal.”
Twenty-six-year TV chef veteran Tyler Florence has captivated millions of viewers on numerous hit shows, including Emmy-nominated “Tyler’s Ultimate” and “The Great Food Truck Race,” which is heading into its 16th season. His reach and influence extends well beyond his cooking shows, as he has authored 16 cookbooks and generated a large following on social media due to his insatiable quest for what’s current.
He is a proud graduate of Johnson & Wales University ’94, ’04 Hon, and a two-time James Beard Award nominee for Best Chef West Coast. Florence launched his award-winning flagship restaurant, Wayfare Tavern, over a decade ago. Tyler Florence Fresh, his outpost in San Francisco International Airport, also serves the best of his signature dishes.
His newest San Francisco restaurant project, Miller & Lux, is a West Coast classic steakhouse, located in the new Chase Arena, home of NBA’s 2022 Championship Team, The Golden State Warriors. In 2017, Florence created a full-stack production company, Monarch Collective, Inc.
His debut film, “Uncrushable,” a documentary about the Northern California wildfires, was the catalyst for the company. He calls Corte Madera, California home, where he lives in an 1890s-era Bernard Maybeck home with his wife and children.
American television personality and best-selling author, Kate Gosselin is a registered nurse and mother of twins and sextuplets. Gosselin and her family were featured in two successful American reality television series, “Jon And Kate Plus 8” and later “Kate Plus 8.” Both series focused on the challenges and joys of raising eight children, including twins Cara and Mady, and sextuplets, Alexis, Hannah, Aaden, Collin, Leah and Joel.
Gosselin also is an author and has written three non-fiction books, including two New York Times best-selling books, “Multiple Blessings” (2008) and “Eight Little Faces” (2009), followed by “I Just Want You To Know” (2010). She also is a cookbook author. Gosselin has made a number of guest appearances including participation as a contestant on “Dancing With The Stars” and “Celebrity Apprentice,” as well as guest co-hosting several episodes of “The View.”
Dwight David Howard II is one of the NBA’s most charismatic veteran players, who is entering his 19th season in the NBA. He became an NBA Champion with the Los Angeles Lakers, an eight-time NBA All-Star, eight-time All-NBA Team honoree, five-time All-Defensive Team member, and a three-time Defensive Player of the Year.
Howard also bears the distinction of being the first player in NBA history to earn the honor of Defensive Player of the Year for three consecutive seasons. With a life and career that extend beyond stadiums and arenas, Howard also is a filmmaker, community leader, media figure and philanthropist. Expanding his focus the past few years, Howard took his first steps as an actor where he amassed credits with such films as “The Equalizer 2,” “The Three Stooges” and “Free Birds.”
He also surprised television audiences during his reveal as “The Octopus” on Season Six of the smash FOX series The Masked Singer and guest-starred on Season Eight of the acclaimed comedy “Black-ish.” Howard also has appeared in “The Odd Couple,” “Liv and Maddie,” “Mighty Med” and “Never Have I Ever.”
Montell Jordan’s first musical offering, “This Is How We Do It,” was a breakout song in 1995 that topped the Hot 100 for seven weeks and R&B charts for eight. Over his nearly twenty-year career in music, Jordan has released eight studio albums, 14 singles, two gospel projects, and is a Grammy-nominated artist, selling more than 10 million records worldwide, also credited with achieving five certified Billboard #1 records.
He garnered Songwriter of the Year awards, Grammy, Soul Train and Dove Award nominations, owned a record label and sold-out major tour venues all over the world. Jordan has authored two books, his autobiography, “Becoming Unfamous,” in 2016 and a marriage book in 2017 that he co-authored with wife Kristin Hudson, titled “This Is How We Do It!: Making Your Marriage A Masterpeace.”
Jordan and Hudson have founded Marriage Masterpeace Inc., a 501(c)3 non-profit organization helping public and high-profile marriages heal privately.
He stepped away from the music business in 2011, entering fulltime ministry. Today, Jordan is a pastor, speaker, teacher, motivator and still tours the world performing before sold-out audiences in stadiums around the world. He is Co-Pastor of Master Peace Church, a house church providing virtual ministry to transform living rooms into houses of worship around the world.
Gus Kenworthy is a British-American park freeskier, actor, model and advocate. Kenworthy is known as one of the best all-around park skiers as he has podium finishes across all three disciplines (slopestyle, halfpipe and big air) and is accredited with groundbreaking tricks in each. In 2014, Kenworthy won a silver medal for Team USA at the Sochi Olympic Games.
In 2015, Kenworthy came out on the cover of ESPN Magazine and became the first openly gay professional athlete in any action sport. At the 2018 Olympics, Kenworthy made history by becoming the first openly gay man (alongside Adam Rippon) to compete for the U.S. in a Winter Olympics.
In 2019, he landed a series regular role on “American Horror Story: 1984.” He also has appeared on “Will & Grace,” “Olympic Dreams,” “Drop The Mic,” “The Challenge and “Coming Out Colton.” He also has been a guest judge on “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” “Top Chef” and “Beat Bobby Flay.”
Kenworthy resides in Los Angeles with his partner, Adam, and their dogs, Birdie and Frank.
Nastia Liukin won five medals at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, including the coveted All-Around Gold medal. She has since been inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame, USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame and the United States Olympic Hall of Fame. After achieving her biggest dream in the sport, Liukin set out to make her mark on the world beyond her athletic career.
For the past decade, she has been the lead female gymnastics analyst with NBC Olympics. She started a podcast, MUSE with Nastia Liukin, to share the stories of the world’s leading entrepreneurs, athletes, and change-makers. Additionally, she founded one of the most prestigious events in the sport of gymnastics, The Nastia Liukin Cup.
Two-time Olympic gold medalist and two-time World Cup Champion Carli Lloyd is a former soccer legend who played for the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team for 17 years (2005-2021). She was awarded the most prestigious and highest award in soccer: FIFA World Player of the Year (2015 and 2016); only one other American player has received the award twice. She is a two-time Olympic gold medalist (2008 and 2012) and a bronze medalist (2020).
She holds the unique distinction of scoring in every Olympic medal match, including the 2008 gold medal match against Brazil, a brace in the 2012 gold medal game against Japan, and a brace in the 2020 bronze medal game against Australia. Lloyd holds the record for all-time leading scorer in USWNT Olympic history with 10 goals. She is the only American player to score in four different Olympics (2008, 2012, 2016, 2020).
She became the first player in FIFA Women’s World Cup to score a Hat Trick in a World Cup Final (2015). She was awarded the Golden Ball (MVP) and Silver Boot at the 2015 World Cup. She ended her career having scored 134 goals in 316 caps (games played), which ranks 3rd all-time on the international stage for men and women.
She also runs her own CL10 Soccer Clinics for ages 8-18, for both boys and girls. The bestselling author of “When Nobody Was Watching,” she empowers audiences to find their own success with lessons from both in and beyond the world of sports.
Beverley Mitchell is an actress best known for her starring role as the emotional yet lovable Lucy Camden on the hit series “7th Heaven.” With 11 seasons, “7th Heaven” remains the longest running family drama in history, surpassing even “The Waltons” and “Little House On The Prairie.” After “7th Heaven,” Mitchell was cast as “Katelyn O’Malley” on the hit show “The Secret Life of the American Teenager.”
Prior to “7th Heaven,” Mitchell had a recurring role on the comedy series “Phenom” and guest starred on a number of series, including “Melrose Place,” “Quantum Leap” and “Baywatch.” She also has starred in several TV movies, including “A Gift Wrapped Christmas,” “Get Out Alive,” “Hometown Christmas,” “Post Mortem,” “Right On Track,” “White Dwarf,” “Mother of the Bride” and the miniseries “Sinatra.”
Mitchell made her feature film debut in “The Crow: City Of Angels,” which she followed up with the horror/thriller “Saw II.” She also starred in two seasons of the hit mockumentary series “Hollywood Darlings,” starring opposite Christine Lakin and Jodie Sweetin.
She is currently working with her husband and kids on a new project, “In With The Old,” where they renovate their ancestral home of over 100 years old. She and her husband Michael (married since 2008) are fully dedicated to their young family, Kenzie (9), Hutton (7) and Mayzel (2).
Kenya Moore is best known to her legion of fans as a star of the #1 rated housewives show, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” and has been a part of the hit franchise for 10 seasons. Recently, fans got to see a different and softer side of Moore when she appeared on “Dancing With The Stars” for their 30th anniversary season. She also mixed it up with the Housewives All Stars in the first season of “Real Housewives: Ultimate Girls Trip.”
Additionally, she is the founder and CEO of the highly successful hair care line Kenya Moore Hair Care and serves as an ambassador for The Baby Quest Foundation. Moore enjoys being a mom to her 3 1/2-year-old daughter, Brooklyn. The world first met Moore in 1993 when she made history becoming the second Black Miss USA in history.
Mike Piazza is a Hall of Fame catcher and played 16 seasons in the MLB, most notably with the Mets and Dodgers. He was elected to the Mets Hall of Fame in 2013 and elected to the MLB Hall of Fame in 2016. He is a 12-time All-Star and 10-time Silver Slugger Award winner as a catcher.
He has a total of 427 career home runs, which is the most home runs by a catcher in MLB history. He was NL Rookie of the Year in 1993 and won the 1994 ESPY Award for Breakthrough Athlete. He was the MLB All-Star Game MVP in 1996 and went on to lead the Mets to the World Series in 2000.
DR. DREW PINSKY
Dr. Drew Pinsky, known nationally as “Dr. Drew,” has been a ubiquitous fixture both on television and radio for the entirety of his multi-faceted career, regarded as a beacon of truth, integrity, fairness and common sense. His work as a doctor of internal medicine/addiction specialist and prolific broadcaster has imbued him with the rare ability to examine any issue through the lenses of practical experience, scientific evidence and pragmatism.
His diverse skill set qualifies him to serve in many different capacities such as the role of host, expert contributor, insightful interviewer and panel moderator. Dr. Drew began his media career by hosting the nationally syndicated radio show “Loveline” which aired for over 32 years.
This archetypal show became a cultural phenomenon that provided a platform for listeners (including adolescents and young adults) to ask questions and receive information, guidance and advice about sex, health and relationships, giving him unparalleled insight into the American teenage experience.
He hosts the hit reality television series “Teen Mom OG,” as well as the “Teen Mom 2” reunion specials. Dr. Drew shares his wisdom, opinions and humor on a variety of podcasts, including his newest, most popular show, “Dr. Drew After Dark.” He also hosts the award-winning “The Dr. Drew Podcast,” and “The Adam and Dr. Drew Show” (co-hosted by Adam Carolla).
His newest project, DrDrew.TV, is where “Ask Dr. Drew” and “Dose of Dr. Drew” livestream on a variety of platforms.
Anthony Scaramucci is the Founder and Managing Partner of SkyBridge Capital and served as the White House Communications Director for a period in July 2017. He is the author of five books: “The Little Book of Hedge Funds,” “Goodbye Gordon Gekko,” “Hopping Over the Rabbit Hole” (a 2016 Wall Street Journal best seller), “Trump: The Blue-Collar President” and most recently in 2022, “The Genius of Algorand: Technical Elegance and the DeFi Revolution” (#1 best seller on Amazon).
In 2016, Scaramucci was ranked #85 in Worth Magazine’s Power 100: The 100 Most Powerful People in Global Finance. In 2011, he received Ernst & Young’s “Entrepreneur of the Year – New York” Award in the Financial Services category.
He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), vice chair of the Kennedy Center Corporate Fund Board, a board member of both The Brain Tumor Foundation and Business Executives for National Security (BENS), and a Trustee of the United States Olympic & Paralympic Foundation.
Scaramucci, a native of Long Island, NY, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Tufts University and a Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School.
JAMIE LYNN SPEARS
Jamie Lynn Spears is an award-winning actress, singer, songwriter, wife and mother. At age 9, she made her television debut after joining the cast of “All That” and spent four years starring as the title character in “Zoey 101.” At sixteen, her pregnancy and subsequent motherhood made headlines. She returned to the industry as a singer/songwriter and released her first EP in 2014.
She collaborated with Jenna Kramer on the award winning “I Got the Boy” (NSAI, BMI). She released a new version of “Follow Me,” the theme song from “Zoey 101” to accompany the show’s reboot (2023). Spears will return to play “Noreen” in Season Three of “Sweet Magnolias.”