UPDATE (1/18/2021): Though the news leaked earlier this month, RuPaul and World of Wonder has now confirmed the longtime host will anchor an Australian version of the ever growing competition. The newest iteration, titled RuPaul's Drag Race Down Under will host drag performers from across Australia and New Zealand.
With production beginning this week, the show was commissioned by local streaming service Stan in Australia and TVNZ OnDemand in New Zealand. It will be available on WOW Presents Plus in the U.S. Michelle Visage is set to join Ru as a permanent host and there will be one more permanent host as well as celebrity guest judges.
"Hey it's RuPaul and I'm thrilled to announce RuPaul's Drag Race Down Under," Ru said in a teaser video wearing the look he wore for YouTube's New Year's broadcast. "You guys are going to be in for such a thrill. It's going to be right here on WOW Presents Plus. You betta watch."
ORIGINAL (1/08/2021): Though RuPaul is already set to host four seasons of RuPaul's Drag Race this year, it looks like the early-rising performer could be adding another to the list. Though, when it first was announced in 2019 we expected for the show to go in another direction, reports now say Ru is set to quarterback the upcoming Drag Race Australia.
Originally set to air in 2020, Drag Race Australia is one of the latest international installments in Ru's empire. After the U.S.-based RuPaul's Drag Race, The Switch Drag Race was launched in Chile. Then came Drag Race Thailand, which sadly only lasted two seasons. RuPaul's Drag Race U.K. was the first international version to get the queen of drag to come over and physically be involved while Canada's Drag Race and Drag Race Holland both opted for local talent. Now comes Australia.
According to Express magazine, RuPaul has flown into New Zealand for quarantine and filming in order to host the franchise. Drag Race Australia will film there due to some restrictions still in place in Australia as a result of the ongoing global pandemic. The history-making Emmy-award winning host will direct 12 queens through ten episodes. It's worth it to note that Ru's husband, Georges LeBar is Australian.
Whenever the show premieres it will air on Stan in Australia and is expected to air on WOW Presents Plus internationally. Some beleive the choice to go with Ru as host is in response to Canada's Drag Race, where hardcore fans were not pleased with the judging decisions. Some criticized comments and critiques by panelists like Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman who functioned as one in a group of hosts, but is not known as a drag peformer.
The new series could debut this year. If it does, it will join the ongoing Drag Race season 13, Drag Race U.K. series two which is set to launch in a week, as well as All Stars season six, Drag Race U.K. series three, Canada's Drag Race season two, and the debut season of Drag Race Spain, all scheduled to premiere in 2021.