Monday, April 27, 2009

Remembering Bea Arthur, Kim Weiskopf; Hallmark Channel, WE tv, TV Land, Me-Too All To Air Tributes for Bea

Today we will cover everything Bea Arthur (with a tribute to Kim Weiskopf as well). As you all I'm sure know by now, Bea Arthur has died. Beatrice Arthur, the tall, deep-voiced actress whose razor-sharp delivery of comedy lines made her a TV star in the hit shows Maude and The Golden Girls and who won a Tony Award for the musical Mame, died Saturday (April 25). Arthur died peacefully at her Los Angeles home with her family at her side. She had cancer but that is the only detail we know. Arthur first appeared in the landmark comedy series All in the Family as Edith Bunker's outspoken, liberal cousin, Maude Finley. She proved a perfect foil for blue-collar bigot Archie Bunker (Carroll O'Connor), and their blistering exchanges were so entertaining that producer Norman Lear fashioned Arthur's own series, known of course as Maude. Maude scored with television viewers immediately on its CBS debut in September 1972, and Arthur won an Emmy Award for the role in 1977. The show ended in 1978, as Bea thought it was time for the show to end after six seasons. Then came The Golden Girls from 1985-1992, and it was another groundbreaking comedy, finding surprising success in a television market increasingly skewed toward a younger, product-buying audience. She played Dorothy Zbornak, one of four older friends living in Miami. The show moved to CBS in 1992-93 and was titled The Golden Palace, but Bea didn't sign on for it. Bea did guest star in a two-part episode. In 2003, Lifetime reunited the cast for the special The Golden Girls: Their Greatest Memories. And in 2008, the cast reunited again on the 2008 TV Land Awards accepting the Pop Culture Award.
Even before television, Bea had a major career in plays on Broadway. Arthur's biggest Broadway triumph came in 1966 as Vera Charles, Angela Lansbury's acerbic friend in the musical "Mame," directed by Tony-winning director Gene Saks, who was also her husband of 28 years. They divorced in 1978. During 2001 and 2002 she toured the country in a one-woman show of songs and stories, ... And Then There's Bea.
In between Maude and The Golden Girls, Bea had a failed sitcom. In 1983, she starred in the ABC sitcom Amanda's, an Americanized version of John Cleese's hilarious Fawlty Towers. She was cast as owner of a small seaside hotel with a staff of eccentrics. It lasted a mere 10 episodes, with three episodes unaired.
She was also in films. Among the movies she graced were That Kind of Woman (1959), Lovers and Other Strangers (1970), Mel Brooks' The History of the World: Part I (1981), For Better or Worse (1995). Her TV movies include the ABC TV movie My First Love in 1988 and the NBC TV movie P.O.P. in 1984.
Among her guest appearances on television are the The Golden Girls spin-off Empty Nest, Ellen, Beggars & Choosers, Dave's World, a.k.a. Pablo, Laugh-In, and she appeared on a rare special recap episode of Soap as an "angel." In recent years, Arthur made guest appearances on shows including Curb Your Enthusiasm, Futurama and Malcolm in the Middle. The latter was very popular.
Bea will certainly be missed by millions and millions fans around the world. TV Land has created a 30-second on-air and online promo remembering her. TV Land will air both of her appearances on All in the Family on Tuesday and Wednesday at 9am, the episodes "Cousin Maude's Visit" on Tuesday and the back-door "Maude" pilot that aired as an All in the Family episode on Wednesday. Too bad TV Land isn't airing regular Maude episodes as a tribute. Me-Too in Chicago will air Maude, though! All this week in the 9-10pm CT hour, Me-Too Chicago airs "Remembering Maude: A Tribute to Bea Arthur." View the episode schedule. Lucky fans in Chi-town.
Hallmark and WE tv air The Golden Girls regularly multiple times a day. Hallmark will pay tribute to Bea with a Memorial Day marathon and WE tv pays tribute to Bea tonight and Thursday, see below for more details on both. Watch a video celebration of her life and career. Bea lived a long life and was 86.

Hallmark Channel has announced it will pay tribute to legendary star Bea Arthur with an all-day Golden Girls "Memorial Day Marathon" on Monday, May 25 from 6:30am-2:30am, featuring episodes focusing on Arthur's character Dorothy Zbornak, a gruff, wise-cracking divorcée who shared her Miami home with her mother and two loopy friends. Golden Girls plays daily on Hallmark Channel: Monday-Friday, 8-10 a.m., 7-9 p.m., 12-2 a.m., Saturdays 6-9 a.m., and Sundays 8:30-10 a.m. View their press release. UPDATE: We get marathons SOONER now on Hallmark! At the Studio City, CA home of Hallmark Channel, fans of the classic comedy Golden Girls flooded the network's Viewer Services department today with parenthetical appreciation for the channel's announcement of a Memorial Day Tribute to Bea Arthur. The qualifier to the announcement included these sentiments: more, sooner, please. And now Hallmark has listened! Hallmark Channel responded by hand-selecting the "Best of the Dorothy Zbornak Episodes" which begin running Tuesday, April 28 (7-9pm) and continue, Wednesday, April 29 (7-9pm), and Thursday, April 30 (7-9pm) in the normal Golden Girls timeslots, but also on Sunday, May 3 (8:30am-3am) a full day event is planned! This is all in addition to the previously announced Memorial Day marathon on, Monday, May 25 (6:30am-2:30am.). We don't have episode info yet for the Memorial Day stunt, but Hallmark has released the 5 day stunt episodes for this week! Thank you for being a friend, Hallmark!
WE tv airs the show weeknights from 5-7pm ET, with primetime marathons from 6pm-12am on Monday nights, so that includes tonight. They also air the show sometimes on Thursday late nights. WE tv announced today two special nights of programming to honor Bea Arthur. "WE Remember Bea" will feature a marathon of favorite The Golden Girls episodes both Monday, April 27 from 5pm-12am ET and Thursday, April 30 from 9:30pm-1am ET. The acclaimed actress, known for her quick wit and willingness to embrace controversial issues was the centerpiece of the comedic series, which won more than 38 awards during its run. "WE Remember Bea" will be comprised of episodes which center on Bea Arthur's colorful character Dorothy Zbornak and key related storylines from the series. See the episode info for tonight's marathon.
WE tv already had a scheduled Golden Girls Memorial Day marathon from 10am-6am, so we have two networks airing a marathon on The Golden Girls on May 25.

We also have lost Kim Weiskopf, a TV comedy writer whose credits included Three's Company and Married...with Children, died of pancreatic cancer Wednesday (April 22) at his home in Encino. He launched his career in the early 1970s, with longtime writing partner Michael S. Baser, he wrote for series such as One Day at a Time, The Jeffersons, Melba, Carter Country, We Got It Made, and Good Times, the latter show leading to their first staff-writing position.
The writing duo went on to write and produce three seasons of ABC's Three's Company before being hired to create the TV series 9 to 5 for ABC, which was based on the movie. They then developed an updated, syndicated version of the '70s series What's Happening!! called What's Happening Now!!, though he had never worked with the original series.
Weiskopf's also wrote and produced for Rachel Gunn, R.N., Full House and Married...with Children, without Baser. Kim appeared in interviews for the E! True Hollywood Story episodes of both Three's Company and Married...with Children. He had an uncredited appearance on Married...with Children on an episode playing Lucky the Dog in a 1996 episode.
He is going to be missed, especially by fans of Three's Company and Married...with Children. Kim was 62.

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Thursday, March 19, 2009

Detroit's WADL New Classic TV Block; Obama Preempts Programming on March 24

WADL TV-38, Detroit's Urban TV station will be adding some exceptional new programming that will include legendary favorites to the station's spring line-up. The new additions to the classic TV programs will include: I Love Lucy, Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, The Brady Bunch, The Honeymooners, The Beverly Hillbillies and The Andy Griffith Show.
WADL TV 38 features Detroit's only local dance show Dance Party, and nationally known programming such as Cribs, American Chopper, RENO 911, Dave Chappell's Show, and Cheaters. In addition, the station already specializes in classic programming such as Good Times, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Fat Albert, The A-Team, In The Heat of the Night and up and coming to the lineup, Steve Harvey, Brian McKnight, The Brady Bunch and many others.
Currently the classic TV line-up on weekdays starting at 4PM is The Jeffersons, Sanford & Son, The A-Team, The Rockford Files, Fat Albert, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, A Different World, In the Heat of the Night, Good Times, M*A*S*H, The Odd Couple, Magnum P.I., Hawaii Five-0, and What's Happening Now!!
So, the new programming will start Monday, March 30. Weekdays starting 4PM: Fat Albert, The Brady Bunch, Beverly Hillbillies, I Love Lucy, Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, Sanford & Son, Fresh Prince, A Different World, The Honeymooners, In The Heat of the Night, The Jeffersons, Good Times, M*A*S*H, The Odd Couple, Magnum P.I., Hawaii Five-0, and What's Happening Now!!

President Obama is as it again...with preempting primetime programming. This time it will be on Tuesday, March 24 at 8PM ET. I'm all for Obama, but come on this is crazy. Eastern/Central time zones will be mostly affected by this. I'll detail it by network.
First up ABC will air the Presidential News Conference with Obama live at 8pm ET/5pm PT. So in the eastern/central time zones, the return of According to Jim will be totally preempted. Dancing with the Stars: The Results and Primetime: What Would You Do? will air as scheduled following the news conference. Out in the mountain and pacific time zones, everything will air as normally scheduled, including According to Jim...but they will be repeats instead ("The Blankie" and "Cabin Boys"). So if you're in the east/central time zones and love According to Jim, you'll have to watch the repeats on abc.com the next day, or if you get ABC onDemand on your cable system. Not sure how this will affect ABC's finale date of May 5 for According to Jim. Will it be pushed back a week or will they air two episodes on a special night to catch up? I was looking forward to the return, because Constance Marie (George Lopez) was going to guest star and the second episode was directed by Penny Marshall.
CBS will air the Presidential News Conference with Obama live at 8pm ET/5pm PT. Following the address, they will air all-new episodes of NCIS and The Mentalist at special times of 9pm and 10pm ET/PT. Without a Trace will totally be preempted. Not sure yet what will air at 8pm PT/7pm MT, but that could go back to local affiliates or CBS could air a NCIS repeat there leading into a new NCIS.
NBC will air the Presidential News Conference with Obama live at 8pm ET/5pm PT, pushing The Biggest Loser an hour back from 8-10pm to 9-11pm ET/PT. So, Law & Order: SVU is totally preempted. For mountain/pacific time zones at 8pm PT/7pm MT you will see a special Dateline episode leading into The Biggest Loser at a special time.
Finally, most affected by Obama is Fox. Fox will have to totally scrap a two-hour American Idol Tuesday. They will air the Presidential News Conference with Obama live at 8pm ET/5pm PT. A House repeat will follow at 9pm ET/8pm CT. House will also air at 9pm PT/8pm MT. King of the Hill repeats will fill the hour at 8pm PT/7pm MT. The regular Tuesday installment of Idol will be moved to Wednesday 8-10pm ET/PT, so that means an episode of Lie to Me will have to be preempted that week. And the regular results of Idol Wednesday will have to be moved to Thursday, March 26 from 8-9pm ET/PT preempting Bones. Instead of this mess, couldn't Fox just have aired Idol 9-11pm ET on Tuesday and air it in its normal time in the mountain/pacific time zones instead of causing mass confusion? I know Fox doesn't schedule at 10pm, but the local affiliates wouldn't mind, I'm sure.

I'm on my way to a quick trip to Houston in literally minutes, so I'll see you back live on Sunday when I return...but please do come on by tomorrow (great story!) and Saturday (blog DVD review) as I have already done those stories for those days set to post on their own. Ain't technology grand?

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Thursday, March 13, 2008

TV Land May 2008 Highlights; RTN Adds 2 More Affiliates; Hulu.com Launches

As promised, we will bring you TV Land May 2008 highlights today! No schedule changes are being made thus far, so we should expect the same changes that happened on March 10. New original series The Big 4-0 will continue through May 14, Wednesdays at 10. It starts April 16, of course, as we mentioned in the April highlights. For every mom whose ever wanted to sit back and watch dad do the work, TV Land's Movie Land block offers Three Men and a Baby, celebrating Mother's Day Weekend on May 9 and 10. Tom Selleck, Ted Danson and Steve Guttenberg star as three swinging bachelor roommates who find a baby girl on their doorstep. Moms everywhere can sit back and relax as they watch three ill-equipped men try to tackle a job that normally only take one woman to accomplish!
The TV Land Movie Week for May has a lot of fun. Grab your popcorn and kick back as Jamie Lee Curtis and Kevin Kline lead an all-star cast of diamond thieves in the hilariously funny A Fish Called Wanda on Monday. Tuesday, the star power continues with Steve Guttenberg, Ted Danson and Tom Selleck who find themselves thrust into fatherhood in Three Men and A Baby. Sigourney Weaver and Melanie Griffith duke it out in the workplace on Wednesday with Working Girl. Thursday brings an out of this world experience with Christopher Lloyd, Elizabeth Hurley, Jeff Daniels and Darryl Hannah in My Favorite Martian, based on the '60s TV series.
The regular Friday Movie Land block in May features movies such as E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, Working Girl, A Fish Called Wanda, Flashdance.
TV Land will feature all of the best and brightest M*A*S*H episodes the weekend of May 17-19. They're fun, odd and unforgettable! If that wasn't enough, TV Land has got the highest rated episode in television history, the M*A*S*H Finale, plus the 20th & 30th anniversary M*A*S*H Reunions!
This Memorial Day, it's a day full of TV Land's newest and brightest originals. Starting at 8am, it's enjoyable and adventurous birthday celebrations with The Big 4-0. Then at 11am the fun never ends with the classmates from High School Reunion and at 5pm Myths and Legends reveals stars best kept secrets and some of the greatest stories in Hollywood. A primetime marathon of Andy Griffith rounds out the night.
Finally, on Saturday, May 31, there's only one "fabulous", "chic" and "sassy" man who can take TV Land's fashion head-on–celebrity stylist and judge of TV Land's new original reality series, She's Got The Look (premiering June 4) ... Robert Verdi! Integrated in surprising "pop-up" flags, Robert entertains viewers with his lovably-snarky fashion commentary of everyone's favorite TV Land characters, from the mile-high trousers of Jethro Bodine to the super shoulder pads of our Designing Women and Miami Vice.
For more on TV Land May 2008, click HERE!

Retro Television Network (RTN announced that it plans to add an RTN affiliate in Evansville, IN. The new affiliate will launch this summer on a digital stream of WEHT-TV, Evansville's ABC affiliate that is owned by Gilmore Broadcasting Company. Evansville will see James Garner in Rockford Files, Jack Klugman in Quincy, M.E., Raymond Burr in Ironside, Jack Lord in Hawaii 5-0 and Don Adams in Get Smart on weekdays. On the weekends, viewers will see The Partridge Family, The Monkees, The A-Team, Knight Rider, Kojak, Airwolf, Gunsmoke, The Wild Wild West and many more.
Meanwhile, Retro Television Network (RTN) announced today that it will partner with Trans-America Broadcasting Corporation to launch an RTN affiliation in Fresno, CA. The network will begin airing in April on a digital stream of KAIL-TV. Hit shows like Perry Mason, The Rockford Files, Magnum, P.I. and Hawaii 5-0 will air weekdays, while the weekend lineup will include Emergency!, Kojak, Airwolf, The A-Team, Knight Rider and The Wild Wild West.

Hulu.com, a joint venture between News Corp. (Fox) and NBC Universal has launched! Obviously it will have current Fox and NBC shows on here such as 'Til Death, The Simpsons, House, Law & Order, ER and The Office, but it has SO much more from other outlets. Hulu.com is a vast online library of ad-supported TV shows and movies. Other networks on Hulu are Bravo (The Real Housewives of New York City, Make Me A Supermodel , etc), NBC Universal's Chiller (Alfred Hitchcock Hour, Tremors, etc), E! (Pop Fiction), Fox Reality Channel (Paradise Hotel 2), Classic Fox (Arrested Development, Mary Tyler Moore Show, Bob Newhart Show, etc), FX (Dirt, 30 Days, etc), MGM (Addams Family, Fame, etc), Sony's Minisode Network (Facts of Life, Dilbert, Married with Children), MyNetworkTV (Decision House), Classic NBC (A-Team, Knight Rider, The Munsters Today, Problem Child animated, etc), NBC Universal (Jerry Springer, etc), Sci-Fi Channel (Battlestar Galactica, Buck Rogers, etc), NBC Universal's Slueth Network (Simon & Simon, Miami Vice), Sony-owned (Benson, Archie Bunker's Place, What's Happening Now!!, Married with Children, Who's the Boss?, etc), Universal Media (Major Dad, Adam-12, Airwolf, etc), USA Network (Monk, Psych, Starter Wife, etc), and Warner Bros. (Welcome Back Kotter). Wow! Most of the shows are full episodes, but some are clips as well. This will be a treat for everyone as it will have something you like, I'm sure! Check it out!

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Monday, October 15, 2007

AOL Video Adds Archie Bunker's Place, What's Happening Now!!, etc.; Nick at Nite Schedule; Fox Cuts Mid-Season Sitcom In Half

AOL's Funnybone channel, a channel dedicated to classic Sony comedies, has now added Archie Bunker's Place, What's Happening Now!!, Over the Top, Maude, & Square Pegs all in the last month or less. You can also watch newly added episodes of Just Shoot Me, Benson, Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, What's Happening!!, and Married...with Children.
The Archie Bunker's Place episodes are the most unique since they are third season episodes, and of course that season not on DVD yet. Among the episodes you will see is the first pilot for Gloria that has been in the syndication package for Archie Bunker's Place. Other episodes include an episode with Reggie Jackson and an episode with Don Rickles. The What's Happening Now!! and Maude episodes are from the first season, which are on DVD already. Over the Top and Square Pegs are not on DVD yet, so they will be fun to see!

A new Nick at Nite schedule starts tonight. Yes, another one. Full House is back to start off each night, while an overnight marathon featuring shows like Fresh Prince, Roseanne, Cosby Show, and Full House from 3-6am will be on everynight. Click HERE for details.

Fox has cut the episode order for its midseason sitcom The Return of Jezebel James from 13 to 7 episodes, including the pilot. Fox says because it has a tight midseason schedule. Among the shows Fox has coming are returning hits 24 and American Idol along with newbies Unhitched, Canterbury's Law and New Amsterdam.
The sitcom stars Parker Posey as a New York book editor who realizes she wants a baby -- and asks her estranged sister (played by Lauren Ambrose) to carry it.
In other Fox news, Fox is expected to pick-up Back to You this week for a full season order. No doubt they will air it a few times at least after Idol to boost the show. Fox also might pick up a few extra scripts of struggling drama K-Ville. Why?

Tune in tonight to the premiere of the sitcom Samantha Who? at 9:30pm et/pt only on ABC! See our review from Saturday if you haven't already! Be good, Sam!

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Monday, July 16, 2007

I'm Back; TV Land September Highlights; TCA Summer Tour Cable Recap, NBC Day 1

I'm back! As Todd stated yesterday, I have returned from vacation. It was a nice 10 days off but when you love doing something, you tend to miss it. Anyway, Todd like usual did a wonderful job filling in when I was out relaxing in Jacksonville. He brought us nice bits of news and great features from skees53, Seth and of course Solomon's Weekly Rant.

TV Land released their September line-up to us early last week, but I was not home. I did check e-mail twice over there, but had way too much to go through, so I couldn't forward it to Todd in time. Anyway, to TV Land September, the schedule will indeed change a bit. There are no real new additions, but Knight Rider will return to the line-up and air Tues-Fri at 3 p.m. For those of you wondering, the contracts for mega TV Land hits Bonanza and Three's Company are expiring after August, but they have been renewed! So you will see both in September! I don't have full details on the contracts, but my Three's Company people tell me TV Land has rights "for years to come." There are minor changes here and there, some notable ones include Cosby Show off the regular line-up, but it will air in two weekly blocks (Fridays approx. 12-2am and Saturdays approx. 11pm-1am). Weekday mornings have changed a bit, M*A*S*H will also air in the mornings now from 7-8am, followed by What's Happening Now!! and The Jeffersons moving from 7-8am to 8-9am. All in the Family moves from 8-9am to 9-10am, Gunsmoke remains at 10am, followed by double shots of Leave it to Beaver, I Love Lucy and Green Acres from 11am-2pm. The Munsters/Addams Family hour is at 2-3pm.
Friday night movies this month include The Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983), Crocodile Dundee II (1988), and The Longest Yard (1974).
Saturday, September 15 through Monday, September 17, starting at 8pm. 35 years and the 4077 gang is still going strong. Join us as TV Land celebrates the 35th anniversary of this groundbreaking landmark television series with 3 nights of quintessential and favorite M*A*S*H episodes as well as the highly successful reunion specials. Don't miss the pilot episode which will air 35 years to the day and time of the series premiere on September 17 at 8pm!
Having dinner with the family helps everyone reconnect at the end of the day. The family table is often a place where families catch up on their days, share stories and problems – and eat. Whether Andy Griffith ends up eating three dinners in one night or Hawkeye tries to fly in ribs from Chicago to Korea, our TV Land families are definitely sharing more than meals at their tables! CASA Family Night airs Sunday, September 23, 8pm-10pm.
For COMPLETE details of the schedule changes and details of the specials & marathons, click HERE.

Unfortunately I was on vacation when the TCA Summer Tour started on July 12. The cable portion was July 12-15. I'll do a little recap of each network's announcements today, that is notable for us at least, at the end of today's blog. But right now I will to cover the first day of NBC's summer press tour. NBC is up today and tomorrow. Then CBS the next 2 days (July 18-19), The CW follows on July 20, the 23rd Annual TCA Awards night is on July 21, Fox follows July 22-23 and ABC caps it off July 25-26.
OK, here is NBC Day 1's notes:
NBC launches its season premieres the week of September 24. The network will adjust its schedule by moving the new comedic spy thriller Chuck to Mondays at 8 p.m. ET followed by switching the popular Monday version of Deal or No Deal to Fridays 8 p.m. ET, and shifting Friday Night Lights to an earlier new time of 9 p.m. (ET) and Las Vegas to 10 p.m. (ET).
In addition, NBC will expand The Biggest Loser to 90 minutes on Tuesdays from 8-9:30 p.m. ET and will have a special two-hour premiere on Tuesday, Sept. 11. Summer's newest hit, The Singing Bee (which premiered earlier this month), will have its Fall premiere on Tuesday, September 25 in the 9:30 p.m. ET half-hour.
NBC's premiere week will also feature one-hour season premieres each of sitcoms My Name Is Earl (8-9 p.m. ET) and The Office (9-10 p.m. ET) on Thursday, September 27 and a two-hour season premiere of Las Vegas on Friday, September 28 (9-11 p.m. ET).
So, it looks like game show 1 vs. 100 is off the fall schedule for now.
NBC Fall Premiere Dates:

Tuesday, SEPTEMBER 11
The Biggest Loser (8-10 p.m.)

Monday, SEPTEMBER 17
Deal or No Deal (8-9 p.m.)

Monday, SEPTEMBER 24
Chuck (8-9 p.m.)
Heroes (9-10 p.m.)
Journeyman (10-11 p.m.)

Tuesday, SEPTEMBER 25
The Singing Bee (9:30-10 p.m.)
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (10-11 p.m.)

Wednesday, SEPTEMBER 26
Deal or No Deal Wednesday (8-9 p.m.)
Bionic Woman (9-10 p.m.)
Life (10-11 p.m.)

Thursday, SEPTEMBER 27
My Name Is Earl (8-9 p.m.)
The Office (9-10 p.m.)
ER (10-11 p.m.)

Friday, SEPTEMBER 28
Deal or No Deal Friday (8-9 p.m.)
Las Vegas (9-11 p.m.)

Thursday, OCTOBER 4
30 Rock (8-8:30 p.m.)

Friday, OCTOBER 5
Friday Night Lights (9-10 p.m.)

Thursday, OCTOBER 25
Scrubs (9:30-10 p.m.)

NBC press notes:
- Isaiah Washington (Grey's Anatomy) will play a mysterious person who is brought into the enigmatic scientific organization that is responsible for creating the bionics that turn Jaime Sommers (Michelle Ryan, EastEnders) into the Bionic Woman for 5 episodes at least.
- NBC has signed a series deal with legendary, Emmy Award-winning television producer Norman Lear (All in the Family) to join Reveille, Act III Productions, and Universal Media Studios in producing a one-hour dramedy focused on a mother who reenters the work force and is pitted against her late husband's ruthless partner in a money-charged battle of the sexes on Wall Street.
- NBC has renewed The Apprentice for mid-season with a creative twist. In a new celebrity version of the popular series, celebrity contestants will vie for Donald Trump's attention in what will be the highest-profile competition in the groundbreaking series' run. Celebrities will be announced at a later date.
- Jerry Seinfeld returns to NBC in a rare guest-star cameo when he appears as himself in the second-season premiere of NBC's critically acclaimed comedy 30 Rock on October 4 (Thursday, 8:30-9 p.m. ET).

As mentioned, the TCA Cable Summer Press Tour was July 12-15. On July 12 we had Lifetime, FX, Hallmark Channel, National Geographic Channel, HBO among the channels that went. July 13 was TV Guide, the MTV Networks, Travel Channel, BBC America, Discovery Networks, E!, style. On July 14 we had Disney Channel, SOAPnet, ESPN, Sundance Channel, GSN, and Showtime. The final day saw Turner Broadcasting, BET, Rainbow Networks, History Channel, NBC Universal Networks.
Among the programming Lifetime touted were the new series Side Order of Life and State of Mind, both of them debuted last night. The second season premiere of Lisa Williams: Life Among the Dead will lead into the series premiere of the new reality competition show America's Psychic Challenge on Friday, October 12. Finally, 18 episodes of Army Wives have been ordered for the new season, which will premiere in the spring of 2008.
FX talked about a highly anticipated episode of nip/tuck titled "Gala Gallardo." They also talked about the new series Damages starring Glenn Close and Ted Danson.
The Hallmark Channel will create tons of TV movies with classic TV stars including Valerie Bertinelli, Dick Van Dyke, Tom Bosley, Dean Cain, Lea Thompson, Ernest Borgnine and Ernie Hudson.
HBO talked about some original series, movies, and documentaries. New original movie As You Like It premieres in August. A new drama series called Tell Me You Love Me premieres September 9. Also on that date a new documentary will premiere titled Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraq. The huge night will also have the sixth season premiere of Curb Your Enthusiasm.
Among the MTV Networks that went were TV Land and Spike TV. TV Land talked about its Elvis month this August as we have mentioned here many times. They also released details on a new special from EW. Oprah. Heather Locklear. Homer Simpson. Regardless of age, TV genre or life-form, there are select TV personalities whose work is timeless and whose popularity is endless due to the impact they have made through television. Entertainment Weekly and TV Land Present: The 50 Greatest TV Icons, a two-hour special premiering on TV Land on Friday, November 16 from 8-10pm ET/PT, counts down the iconic personalities who have made their indelible mark via the small screen. The list will also be revealed in the issue of Entertainment Weekly on stands that same day. TV Land Confidential launched its season season last week and TV Land will premiere Back to the Grind this Wednesday. High School Reunion launches in January.
Spike TV mentioned their new series The Kill Point launching July 22 and their unscripted crime drama series Murder coming July 31.
Nickelodeon will launch a new web cast type show for kids called iCarly and a new Chinese animated series called Ni Hao, Kai-lan coming October 22.
Salt-n-Pepa return with The Salt-n-Pepa Show on VH1 coming October 15. See VH1 follow their lives.
E! talked about their new series, Chelsea Lately, which premiered tonight. style Network will launch the first reality sitcom series, Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane takes viewers inside the compelling life of Kimora Lee Simmons.
Disney Channel announced that Wizards of Waverly Place will come in October. Mark down August 17 for the premiere of the new movie High School Musical 2. A High School Musical Documentary is also in the works for the fall. SOAPnet talked about General Hospital: Night Shift, which premiered Thursday and is SOAPnet's first one-hour original scripted drama.
A team of award-winning ESPN correspondents will serve as the reporters of a new series called ESPN Reporters coming October 16. Signed on are Tom Farrey, Rachel Nichols, Lisa Salters, Jeremy Schaap and Michael Smith.
GSN announced details of the new game show Without Prejudice? coming tomorrow. Also, the new game show Grand Slam, hosted by Ken Jennings! It launches August 4. That's The Question a half-hour series that combines word scrambles with a test of world history and pop culture trivia knowledge, returns for a second season on Sept. 10.
Showtime will launch the new season of Weeds in August. One of the most buzzed-about shows on television, Weeds will continue to grow and blossom with inspired new storylines and notable guest starts. The series follows a suburban mother (Mary-Louise Parker) who deals marijuana in order to make ends meet after her husband dies unexpectedly. Brotherhood and Dexter will return for new seasons this fall. A new sitcom called The United States of Tara has been greenlighted. The half-hour single camera comedy pilot revolves around a mother who has multiple personality syndrome.
Court TV announced details for The Star Jones Show coming Aug. 20. CourtTV will be rebranded truTV on January 1. TBS and TNT continued to talk about its upcoming originals The Bill Engvall Show (July 17 on TBS), Saving Grace (July 23 on TNT) and The Company (Aug. 5 on TNT).
BET has put together two of the funniest guys in the business to create an animated sketch comedy show for BET. Orlando Jones and Ali LeRoi have teamed up to create BUFU, in the tradition of Saturday Night Live and SCTV.
USA Network announced details about a new movie title In Plain Sight. Original episodes of Law & Order: Criminal Intent will air Thursdays at 10pm on USA starting Oct. 4. Sci-Fi Channel will create a new animated series called Flash Gordon coming Aug. 10. Bravo's TelevisionWithoutPity.com will create a Fantasy TV game. The game will allow players to create, name and program their own fantasy television networks using both new fall shows and returning series from the five broadcast networks (NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX and CW).

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Wednesday, May 09, 2007

SitcomsOnline.com 2007-08 Upfront Preview: CBS; Notes on ABC, TV Land, AmericanLife and TV One

CBS continues to be the network that will have the least amount of changes to its fall schedule. I think we will see a few moves and some cancellations though.
Here is the SitcomsOnline.com CBS 2007-08 preview:

New Series Already Picked-Up: None
New Series We Think That Are Almost Good To Go: The Man (drama), Los Duques (drama), Big Bang Theory (sitcom) and Babylon Fields (drama).
New Series Perhaps Picked-Up for Mid-Season: Swingtown (drama), Viva Laughlin (drama), and Kohan & Mutchnick Project (sitcom)

OUR FALL 2007 PREDICTION:

Sundays
7:00PM 60 Minutes
8:00PM Cold Case
9:00PM The Man (NEW)
10:00PM Without a Trace

Mondays
8:00PM How I Met Your Mother
8:30PM The Big Bang Theory (NEW)
9:00PM Two and a Half Men
9:30PM Rules of Engagement
10:00PM CSI: Miami

Tuesdays
8:00PM Navy NCIS
9:00PM The Unit
10:00PM CSI: NY

Wednesdays
8:00PM The Amazing Race
9:00PM Criminal Minds
10:00PM Shark

Thursdays
8:00PM Survivor
9:00PM CSI
10:00PM Los Duques (NEW)

Fridays
8:00PM Ghost Whisperer
9:00PM Babylon Fields (NEW)
10:00PM NUMB3RS

Saturdays
8:00PM Crime Repeats
9:00PM Crime Repeats or Close to Home
10:00PM 48 Hours Mystery

Comments: CBS will probably only pick up one sitcom for the fall. Their sitcom development has been terrible quite frankly so we might see on the bubble sitcoms return. This is what I said last year about Close to Home: "Close to Home is on the bubble for CBS, yet it wins its slot regularly on Friday nights, so I think it will return. Maybe CBS can try it on Saturdays to spice up that night." And I was right on the money...and I think this time it might move to Saturdays or just be gone outright as CBS wants to get a bit younger on Fridays.
Series canceled or will be include The Class, Jericho, Smith, 3 LBS, & The King of Queens. I think CBS will have to bring back Old Christine for mid-season as its sitcom development was bad...maybe they pick up one newbie for mid-season. The Class and Jericho are most likely done, but Jericho has a slight chance, but CBS's drama pilots have come out better than expected. Their best drama is probably Swingtown, but it is nothing like a CBS show, so I had no idea where to slot it in the fall. Maybe they can find a fit for mid-season, to say Wednesdays at 8? Wednesdays at 8 is very hard to schedule for CBS. Maybe they will have Amazing Race to that slot in the fall. I really think CSI: NY will move to the cursed CBS Tuesday at 10 slot. That will help that slot and CSI: NY has battled the original Law & Order well in the past, so I think it can tackle a declining Law & Order: SVU. Maybe they will try Shark out of Criminal Minds so CBS can try something else post-CSI, like Los Duques.

Remember, next Wednesday (May 16) is the actual date when we will find out CBS's plans for the 2007-08 season. So, come on back next Wednesday and we will let you know the details and you can see how much we were right (or wrong). Stay tuned tomorrow for a preview on Fox's upfront.

ABC has pulled the 9:30pm airing of Notes from the Underbelly for tonight for a repeat of George Lopez. Notes from the Underbelly will still air in its regular 8:30pm slot.
On TV Land, they will be finally airing new episodes of What's Happening Now!! and not the same 12 episodes over and over. Starting Tuesday, May 29 you can catch episodes never seen on TV Land before of the hit follow-up series. The series lasted 66 episodes, so let's hope we see them all. The series airs weekdays at 7am ET/PT on TV Land. Program those DVRs, TiVos, VCRs, or whatever. For more information on the new episodes click HERE.
AmericanLife TV has acquired the classic '60s drama Mission: Impossible to its primetime classic TV line-up! The series will debut October 2007! For full details click HERE.
In addition to the TV One Mother's Day marathon we mentioned in the May highlights, TV One is asking us to vote for the top TV One mom...Mary Jenkins of 227 or Florida Evans of Good Times? Vote for your fav TV mom, plus enter for a chance to win $25,000 by clicking HERE.

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Monday, May 07, 2007

SitcomsOnline.com 2007-08 Upfront Preview: NBC; TV Land June Change

For NBC it will be all about starting the night off with a reality/game show to set up the dramas. NBC's Thursday comedy block is not what it used to be, but it has a cult audience and maybe another one of those shows will be launched this fall. NBC is looking for a drama hit as some of the older series are running out of gas.
Here is the SitcomsOnline.com NBC 2007-08 preview:

New Series Already Picked-Up: None.
New Series We Think That Are Almost Good To Go: Lipstick Jungle (drama), Journeyman (drama), Fort Pit (drama), and The I.T. Crowd (sitcom).
New Series Perhaps Picked-Up for Mid-Season: The Mastersons of Manhattan (sitcom), Life (drama), and Bionic Woman (drama)

OUR FALL 2007 PREDICTION:

Sundays
7:00PM Football Night in America
8:00PM Sunday Night Football

Mondays
8:00PM Deal or No Deal
9:00PM Heroes
10:00PM Journeyman (NEW)

Tuesdays
8:00PM 1 vs. 100
9:00PM Fort Pit (NEW)
10:00PM Law & Order: SVU

Wednesdays
8:00PM Thank God You're Here
9:00PM Medium
10:00PM Lipstick Jungle (NEW)

Thursdays
8:00PM My Name is Earl
8:30PM The I.T. Crowd (NEW)
9:00PM The Office
9:30PM 30 Rock
10:00PM ER

Fridays
8:00PM Deal or No Deal
9:00PM Friday Night Lights
10:00PM Las Vegas

Saturdays
8:00PM Dateline NBC
9:00PM Drama Repeats
10:00PM Drama Repeats

Comments: So what about Crossing Jordan, Law & Order: Criminal Intent and Law & Order? I say they will be benched until January after the NFL ends and they will bring them to Sundays for a repeat free season...but maybe one will be a goner. The Apprentice might not be back until next winter either...I wish that would just die already. The Black Donnellys, Studio 60, Kidnapped, Identity, Raines, 20 Good Years, Andy Barker, and Real Wedding Crashers are all (or will be) canceled or ended. I really think NBC will only go with one comedy night once again, as we saw what happened to Wednesdays 8-9pm last year. Scrubs is probably gone from NBC, and on the way to ABC for next winter. There is a good chance that The Office will be an anchor show on Thursdays at 9, but I don't think it will do as well as it did at 8:30, but they have to move it to 9pm to try and launch another similar sitcom, as 30 Rock is not a strong show to anchor an hour. So NBC will be multi-camera sitcom-less in the fall, but I have them picking up The Mastersons of Manhattan for mid-season. Life and Bionic Woman could get orders for mid-season. Maybe another drama called Chuck could get in. NBC only has a total of eight drama projects, so that means maybe 1/2 or more could get picked up. NBC had a dismal season once again, but Heroes was a bright spot, as the high power project Studio 60 was a bust. Friday Night Lights was not a good either, but I see them bringing it back to try again. They can use Deal or No Deal on Fridays again as Sundays will be Football, and have 1 vs. 100 on another night, say Tuesday. Will NBC revamp the schedule they released at upfront once again after releasing it, like it did last year? We shall see.

Remember, next Monday (May 14) is the actual date when we will find out NBC's plans for the 2007-08 season. So, come on back next Monday and we will let you know the details and you can see how much we were right (or wrong). Stay tuned tomorrow for a preview on ABC's upfront.

TV Land has announced that it has changed its late night schedule starting for June. Starting June 4, each weeknight starting at 10pm will have three nightly mini-marathons lasting until 4:30am. Each marathon will consist of four episodes. Mondays will be The Cosby Show, Three's Company & Good Times; Tuesdays will be M*A*S*H, Sanford & Son, & The Jeffersons; Wednesdays will be Sanford & Son, M*A*S*H, & All in the Family; Thursdays will be The Andy Griffith Show, I Love Lucy & Leave it to Beaver; and Fridays will be the Friday Movie, M*A*S*H & Star Trek. Other changes include all Andy Griffith Saturday from 9pm-1:10am with a reairing on Sundays from 7-10pm. So, this means the current 10pm-4:30am line-up will only be on Sundays. The only other change is at 4:30am everynight with The Jeffersons taking over for Sanford & Son. There are no other changes in the daytime and will remain the same as it is now.
What's Happening Now!!, which is airing weekdays at 7am, will get more new episodes starting May 29, but we will let you know when we learn more.
For now click HERE for the list of changes for this nightly marathon changes.

We shall be back with more news, if any.

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Monday, April 23, 2007

More on This Week's 'Cosby' Marathon; Sony Continues to Release New Sitcom DVDs

Due to popular demand, people wanted to know what night each of the Cosby Show kids will be hosting in the Huxta-palooza marathon we announced last week. Lisa Bonet (Denise Huxtable) starts the event with "Denise Monday," which runs from 9 p.m. to midnight and encores immediately. Then it is "Rudy Tuesday" (mocking the restaurant Ruby Tuesday?) with Keisha Knight Pulliam (Rudy Huxtable) doing the honors from 9:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. and encores immediately. "Vanessa Vednesday" lets Tempestt Bledsoe (Vanessa Huxtable) take center stage from 9 p.m. to midnight with an encore immediately following until 3 a.m. "Theo Thursday," is a showcase for Malcolm-Jamal Warner (Theo Huxtable) from 9 p.m. to midnight with an encore immediately following. "Sondra Friday" lets Sabrina Le Beauf (Sondra) share her memories from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m.
And as we mentioned last week, the fun doesn't end there. The marathon will share never-before-seen interviews with the actors. Saturday and Sunday the gang all come together for the weekend.
"Saturday Night Dance Party" gathers the five episodes with the best dancing; they screen from 10 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. And "Guest-Star Sunday" on April 29, the actors recall their five favorite episodes with guest stars. Those installments will screen from 9 to 11:30 p.m. It should be a fun week with nice treats!

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has been pretty good in 2007 with new sitcom DVDs. We have gotten first season sets of Maude, One Day at a Time, Mary Hartman, and both What's Happening Now!! and Silver Spoons are coming in June. They are pretty slow to release second seasons or subsequent seasons still, though. But more new DVDs are on the way in July with the '80s classic Benson (July 24)! Bewitched returns with its fifth season DVD on July 10 and the police drama The Rookies comes to DVD for the first time on July 17.
They have been pretty quick with shows like Seinfeld, The Facts of Life Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie and have finished series such as Sanford & Son, Good Times, Soap, and What's Happening!! but there are some series which they are so slow on such as All in the Family, The Jeffersons, Partridge Family, The Nanny, and Diff'rent Strokes. And then there are the series that they seemed to have abandoned after just one set, such as 227, Who's the Boss?, Barney Miller, and Archie Bunker's Place. Let's hope the new sets of 2007 do not go that route.

It has been a good 2007 for new Sony sets, and let's hope we get some more as well in addition to the first sets. I personally am hoping for: Dennis the Menace, Father Knows Best, My Two Dads, Square Pegs and Designing Women. Most of my favorites came in 2007 or are coming (What's Happening Now!!, Silver Spoons, Benson, One Day at a Time), so I'm pumped! And as for series spin-offs, cross-over series, follow-up series, and shows like that, I'd like to see these come to DVD: Checking In (Jeffersons spin-off), Fernwood2Night (Mary Hartman spin-off), Fish (Barney Miller spin-off), Gloria (Archie Bunker's Place spin-off), Grady (Sanford & Son spin-off), Hello Larry (Diff'rent Strokes cross-over series), One in a Million (What's Happening!!'s Shirley Hemphill starred), Sanford (new show starring Redd Foxx from Sanford & Son), Sanford Arms (Sanford & Son spin-off). Some of those are long shots.
And of course it wouldn't hurt to get more sets of the shows they have already released...like Diff'rent Strokes Season 3!

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

TV Land Changes May 2007 Schedule; Nick at Nite Schedules AFV for May

TV Land has edited their May line-up and mostly everything is moving to new timeslots. The new schedule will start on April 30 and will bring back All in the Family and The Cosby Show to regular airings, and also What's Happening Now!! will finally air as a regular (weekdays at 7am). Among the changes include a sitcom block from 7-9am with What's Happening Now!!, Sanford & Son, All in the Family and The Jeffersons. A note on What's Happening Now!!, they seem to be airing the 12 episodes that they have already aired in a marathon. So once the 12 episodes finish, they start again with the same 12. I hope they decide to air every episode...maybe this is a test. Gunsmoke has been removed from the weekday line-up, but will still air on the weekends. Sunday's encores will however air Monday mornings. The other notable changes include: Andy Griffith Show's four airings are all in early evening now at 5-6pm and 7-8pm, rather than 8-9pm and 1-2am. Good Times coming back in prime-time (8-9pm Mon-Thurs, 9-10pm Fri-Sun). Instead of M*A*S*H from 9-10pm and 12-1am, TV Land has decided to air a M*A*S*H block from 10pm-12am, so there is no breaks. Thus, Sanford & Son which was at 10-11pm will slide to 9-10pm and Three's Company was 11p-12a will move to 12-1am. Late nights will have encores and also Cosby Show from 2-3am. Star Trek has been cut to just 4 times a week in its 5a and 6a slots. See the full schedule starting April 30 by clicking HERE.

As we reported already, the Bob Saget years of America's Funniest Home Videos is coming to Nick at Nite on April 30. The timeslot originally was weeknights at 8:30pm. That has been changed to Sun-Thurs at 9pm and Fri-Sat at 10pm, replacing one episode of Full House each day. Full House will still air immediately following AFV.
The first week though, April 30-May 6, you can catch the show back-to-back all week-long (Sun-Thurs 9-10pm and Fri-Sat 10-11pm) to celebrate the show joining the network.

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