The first international season of The Ultimate Fighter, The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil, will feature a 32-member cast of middleweight and featherweight prospects.
UFC managing director of international development Marshall Zelaznik announced the news at Thursday's UFC 142 pre-fight press conference.
In addition, TUF: Brazil's tournament finals will be held on pay-per-view. In a likelihood, the season-capping fights, including middleweight coaches Vitor Belfort vs. Wanderlei Silva, would be held in Brazil, possibly on a Sau Paulo card headlined by a rematch between Chael Sonnen and Anderson Silva.
TUF: Brazil is slated to begin filming later this month, with a debut date targeted for March 25th. The series will air locally on Brazilian network giant Globo TV every Sunday and conclude with a live finale in mid-June. Fox-owned Fuel TV is scheduled to broadcast the show stateside.
"This show in the United States is huge. It's one of the longest-running reality shows," UFC President Dana White said in December. "It's incredibly popular, it's been huge for us there. We think it's going to be 1,000 times bigger in Brazil. The amount of talent that's in this country right now? There's an undiscovered Anderson Silva, Jose Aldo, Vitor Belfort or Wanderlei Silva."
As usual, the 32 fighters will be split into brackets of 16, before fighting in a preliminary round to enter the TUF house. A pair of eight-man tournaments will then decide each division winner.