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Oprah hits the road in new OWN series

Nov. 19, 2011 at 10:10 AM

CHICAGO, Nov. 19 (UPI) -- Oprah Winfrey will star in a new celebrity interview series on her OWN network debuting next year, the network said.

"Oprah's Next Chapter" features the talk-show queen on the road to interview various celebrities in their natural habitat.

OWN said episodes include Oprah traveling to Haiti with Sean Penn and visiting "Star Wars" director George Lucas at his famed Skywalker Ranch.

"After 25 years, I got myself out of the studio chairs," Winfrey said in a statement. "I moved into the next chapter, and I am having more fun than ever -- moving around the country and the world talking to people I'm really interested in getting to know and I think viewers will be, too."

The front-line role in the new series comes at a potentially pivotal time for OWN. The Los Angeles Times said Saturday that holding on to viewers has been a challenge for the network. OWN is also losing co-owner Peter Liguori at the end of the year, and Gayle King, Oprah's longtime pal, is defecting to CBS' "The Early Show."

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