By James Hibberd
April 05, 2012 at 12:00 PM EDT
PR Photos

NBC’s new reality show is like Celebrity Apprentice run by a Navy SEAL.

The network has ordered Stars Earn Stripes (working title), a new competition series where Hollywood celebrities take on strenuous military challenges.

Nine famous names culled from various areas of performance and entertainment (TV, movies, music, sports) will gather at a military training facility. Each will be paired with an experienced military professional who will prep them for the rigors of the show. The stars will face weekly challenges adapted from actual exercises practiced by the five branches of the armed services, as well as joint ops and Special Forces. Tasks will include missions like staging a hostage rescue and correctly placing a laser target atop a mountain. Each week, one celebrity is discharged.

Stars Earn Stripes has a powerhouse team of executive producers, including Mark Burnett (Survivor), Dick Wolf (Law & Order) and David Hurwitz (Fear Factor).

“When I see someone in a military uniform I make it a point to approach them, shake their hand and say five words: ‘Thank you for your service,'” Burnett says. “Stars Earn Stripes is a high energy, fun, action show, but at its heart it is all about those five words … Our celebrities are going to experience the high adrenaline that special forces and law enforcement encounter and will realize how very hard and scary it is to do those jobs.  I encourage everyone who reads this today to say those five words the next time they see someone in uniform — be it military or law enforcement.”

The celebrities’ prize money will go to a military charity. The show’s intention, notes NBC’s description, is to “honor America’s veterans and active-duty servicemen and women, while providing action-packed entertainment for the home viewer.”

Added Wolf: “I think this is a unique opportunity to pay a tribute to our troops and first responders who put their lives on the line every day.”