ANNER AdvANcEs iN opRAh compEtitioN
Austinite Zach Anner has advanced to the next round in Oprah Winfrey’s contest to find a new show and host for her upcoming Oprah Winfrey Network.
Anner, the self-described “wheelchairbound lady magnet” with cerebral palsy, pitched a travel show in his submission. That video became a viral sensation, attracting the attention of fans including musician
Though Anner had racked up more than 9 million votes, his total was reduced to almost 3.5 million after verification. An independent third party scoured the contest’s Web servers, deleting votes that were cast through invalid means and increasing the vote totals of some contestants by adding votes that were cast but blocked, said Beth Gebhard, director of publicity and communications for the network.
Anner eventually placed seventh, good enough to fly to Los Angeles later this month where he will compete against 39 others for a chance at one of 10 slots in a reality show that will determine who gets his or her own program when the network launches in January.