Klum Cleared Of ‘Poaching’ Project Runway Idea

HEIDI KLUM and the makers of TV series PROJECT RUNWAY have been cleared of stealing the concept for the hit show from two fashion designers.

Cynthia Rodriguez and Elizabeth Zwiebach filed suit against Klum, Disney, Disney’s Miramax Film Corp, Miramax founders Harvey and Robert Weinstein, their new venture Weinstein Company, and NBC Universal in December 2005.

The pair claimed that they originally developed the idea for Project Runway and had allegedly sent a 40-page outline for a reality show they were interested in developing, titled American Runway, to Klum’s agents after first approaching them about it in July 2003.

The show was first aired on the Bravo channel, which is part of NBC Universal, in December 2004.

Rodriguez and Zweibach also claim to have registered and copyrighted the work with the Writer’s Guild of America in March 2003, and that Project Runway was “strikingly similar” to their idea.

But the case was thrown out on Wednesday (01Oct08) by Manhattan Federal Judge Loretta Preska, who said there were more than enough differences to conclude Klum and the makers did not poach the idea, according to New York Daily News.