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Trump Producing Chinese 'Apprentice'

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Donald Trump

HONG KONG - China will soon have its own version of the extremely capitalist reality TV show "The Apprentice," according to a news report. Donald Trump will be the executive producer of the Chinese show, which will be hosted by Beijing property mogul, Pan Shiyi, the South China Morning Post newspaper reported August 21.

The report said the version in the communist country would closely follow the U.S. original, in which contestants use their business savvy to compete against each other, and the winner gets a job with Trump. No release date was given, and the paper said the details of the deal are under final negotiation.

The paper quoted Trump as saying: "China is going to have its own version of 'The Apprentice.' There have been 11 (unofficial) copies of 'The Apprentice,' and every single one of them has failed."

According to the South China Morning Post, the Chinese show will run in direct competition with "Wise Man Takes All" another mainland-based show inspired by "The Apprentice." That show is backed by a busness associate of Trump's, Vincent Lo Hong-sui and offers a cash prize of about $123,400.

Lo, chairman of the Hong Kong-based, Shui On Group and one of Shanghai's biggest property tycoons, is involved in a legal battle with Trump over the proceeds of a $1.76 billion property sale in New York, unrelated to the TV shows.

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'Apprentice' Packs Up and Moves To Beverly

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Donald Trump points to the 18th hole at his newest pet project,

Trump National Golf Club Los Angeles (formerly Ocean Trails).

Head West, Young Man . . . Apparently, Donald Trump was ready for a change of scenery. NBC announced Tuesday, November 29 that it had picked up "The Apprentice" for a sixth season. However, the reality series will be filmed in Los Angeles, as opposed to Manhattan, where the previous editions have taken place.

Despite the change in location, Trump will still be running the same merciless boardroom as he has in seasons past. The real estate mogul is nearing his 70th firing on the show and is showing no sign of losing steam. "I could never have imagined that firing 67 people on national television would actually make me more popular, especially with the younger generation," Trump said in a statement.

"While I love shooting in New York City, I look forward to filming season six in Los Angeles." Trading skyscrapers for palm trees may also be a strategic move to put some distance between Trump's "Apprentice" and Martha Stewart's recently canceled version.

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Donald Trump previously blamed Martha Stewart's 'Apprentice'

for a drop in his own series' ratings.

Trump had previously placed the blame for the drop in his own series' ratings on Stewart's less-successful Apprentice. "I think there was confusion between Martha's Apprentice and mine," he told ABC Radio in October. "And mine continues to do well and, as you know, the other one has struggled very severely."

However, according to reality guru Mark Burnett, the move is at least partially due to the amount of business Trump is currently conducting on the West Coast. "Donald has so many recent West Coast projects that it made perfect sense to change locations and along with it change the flavor of the weekly tasks," Burnett said. "Seeing Donald operate in Southern California will provide yet more insight into his remarkable world."

Trump is currently weeding out the final contestants on season four of "The Apprentice" before making his next hire. The live finale is set to air Thursday, December 15.

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