Donald Trump is planning a recession-themed 'Apprentice'

Donald Trump is re-shaping The Apprentice, his NBC elimination game show, to reflect hard times. If a leaked casting press release is correct, the Donald (with executive producer Mark Burnett) is specifically going after go-getters who've been knocked down by the recession.

The headline for NBC's casting notice was spotted by sharp-eyed web-combers. The announcement has since been removed, but its headline said, "Donald Trump wants to put America back to work."

It went on to read that if you want to apply, you should "explain why you should be the next Apprentice as well as how the recession has affected your life."

The page has since been taken down, and a similar notice placed on casting website Reality Wanted (telling the recently laid off that "this is your chance to get back to work") was deactivated after just a day. But it's probably not because the show's no longer in the works, even though the non-celebrity version of the show has been rumored to be dead now that the celeb editions are doing well.The casting search for the next Apprentice will probably be announced, and the leaked notice made public again, today or tomorrow. The season finale for the latest celebrity version, in which champ Joan Rivers got so angry that her face nearly moved once, was on Sunday. Now that it's done, NBC will probably follow reality TV protocol and officially put out the audition notices. Check NBC's casting page to see if it's back up.

If the leaked release is to be believed, wannabe moguls better start honing their sob stories and sharpening their elbows, because auditions start May 13 in New York, Dallas, Detroit, Atlanta, Phoenix, Denver, and Los Angeles.

You may not win your dream job (the winner of The Apprentice's first season, Bill Rancic, wound up working on a Trump skyscraper that's mired in litigation over its $640 million debt), but these days, a shot at fame may be more reliable than a job anyway -- Rancic is now filling his time with corporate speaking gigs instead.
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