Bird Lovin’ Heidi Fleiss Sets Animal Planet Special

Heidi Fleiss (Photo: Getty Images)

Heidi Fleiss (Photo: Getty Images)

What’s Heidi Fleiss’ reality? We’re about to find out when Animal Planet airs a new one-hour special about the former Hollywood madam and her menagerie of exotic birds.

The special, titled “Heidi Fleiss: From Prostitutes to Parrots” (clever, right?), will air a week from Sunday (on July 31) at 10/9c, Animal Planet announced Thursday. It’s part of the Discovery-owned pet channel’s efforts to inject some edgier subject matter into its lineup of programs – some of which are famous for their devotion to cute, cuddly kittens and puppies.

Among the edgier fare seen on Animal Planet lately was the Mike Tyson pigeon docu-series “Taking on Tyson” and ongoing series such as “River Monsters” and “Whale Wars.”

This “Fleiss” special could morph into a full-fledged reality series if viewers take to it, our sources say. In case you hadn’t heard (and really, why would you?), Fleiss has long been out of the prostitute-and-pimpin’ biz, and living in the Nevada desert in a town called Pahrump. She shares her house with 20-some exotic birds – a lifestyle for which she was profiled some years ago in an HBO documentary called “Heidi Fleiss: The Would-Be Madam of Crystal, Nev.”

Fleiss also struggles with an addiction to methamphetamine for which she appeared on “Celebrity Rehab” and the followup series “Sober House.” Her addiction battle will be part of the Animal Planet special too. “Every day is a fight to stay clean and sober,” the channel’s announcement said.

This Fleiss special was produced by Pilgrim Films and producer Craig Piligian, one of the busier producers of reality TV shows, including the “American Chopper” shows and others.

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