Outside the Box

So, Michael over at Red Right Hand has already posted his thoughts and juicy tidbits from the “Breaking into the Box” event put on by the Writers Guild Foundation on Saturday.

I agree with him on several items, particularly on the value of the non-writers to the discussion. The agents, managers and execs add insight to this whole process of trying to write for television. The showrunners provide their learnings in the trenches and some of the nuts and bolts of running/writing television, but it’s the agents, managers and execs that are the gatekeepers to this kingdom.

Posted under writing

This post was written by Shawna on May 20, 2008

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Breaking into the Box

I’ll be spending my day at the WGA for this event titled “Breaking into the Box.”

Here are the panels for this sold out event:

PANEL – TELEVISION IN THE POST-STRIKE WORLD
The landscape has changed and we all need to learn how to navigate this new terrain. What is the future of scripted programming? Will ‘pilot season’ ever be the same again? How does this affect our world big picture? And how does it affect each of us individually?

Panelists: Shawn Ryan, Brannon Braga, Chris Brancato, Sue Naegle, Josh Barry (ABC). etc.
Moderator: Nell Scovell

PANEL – GETTING IT DONE – HOW A SHOW IS MADE
The nuts and bolts of the process from script to screen – greenlight to final cut. Showrunners, executive producers and writers discuss how a show is set up from start to finish and how a production schedule works.

Panelists: Marc Korman (Endeavor) Damon Lindelof, Allan Heinberg, Kevin Falls, Robin Schiff
Moderator: John Sacret Young

PANEL – GETTING THE JOB – BREAKING IN
Writing the spec script; what to do with it; getting an agent; how to swing things if you DON’T have an agent; what to do if you have a “reality” idea; the importance of WGA signatory shows; resources available; other ways to swing your big break; what is the difference between networking and harassment? Who do I ask to read my stuff and when is that appropriate? All things you need to know before you even start…

Panelists: David Babcock, Josh Appelbaum, Jessica Goldberg, Liz Tigelaar, Lenny Bekerman, Robin Budd (Mandalay Entertainment)
Moderator: Jay Kogen

PANEL – MANAGING YOUR CAREER
Okay. You got one job. Now how to turn that into a career?

Panelists: Margaret Nagle, Cindy Chupack, Nancy Etz (CAA), Larry Shuman, Elizabeth Stephen (Mandalay Entertainment)
Moderator: Jan Oxenberg

Posted under writing

This post was written by Shawna on May 17, 2008

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The fall schedules 2008-09

So, now that upfronts are over, let’s take a look at how the networks stack up against each other next year. Keep in mind that now everyone has shown their cards, there may be a tweak here or there to move shows away from each other.

MONDAY

8 PM

ABC Dancing with the Stars
CBS The Big Bang Theory / How I Met Your Mother (8:30)
NBC Chuck
Fox Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
CW Gossip Girl

9 PM

ABC Untitled Tyra Banks&Ashton Kutcher / Samantha Who (9:30)
CBS Two and a Half Men / Worst Week (9:30)
NBC Heroes
Fox Prison Break
CW One Tree Hill

10 PM

ABC The Bachelor / Boston Legal (after Bachelor ends)
CBS CSI: Miami
NBC My Own Worst Enemy

TUESDAY

8 PM

ABC Opportunity Knocks
CBS NCIS
NBC The Biggest Loser: Families
Fox House
CW 90210

9 PM

ABC Dancing Results Show / Scrubs/The Goode Family(9:30) (after Dancing ends)
CBS The Mentalist
NBC The Biggest Loser: Families / Kath & Kim (9:30)
Fox Fringe
CW Surviving the Filthy Rich

10 PM

ABC Eli Stone
CBS Without a Trace
NBC Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

WEDNESDAY

8 PM

ABC Pushing Daisies
CBS The New Adventures of Old Christine / Project Gary (8:30)
NBC Knight Rider
Fox Bones
CW America’s Next Top Model

9 PM

ABC Private Practice
CBS Criminal Minds
NBC Deal or No Deal
Fox ‘Til Death / Do Not Disturb (9:30)
CW Stylista

10 PM

ABC Dirty Sexy Money
CBS CSI:NY
NBC Lipstick Jungle

THURSDAY

8 PM

ABC Ugly Betty
CBS Survivor
NBC My Name is Earl / 30 Rock (8:30)
Fox The Moment of Truth
CW Smallville

9 PM

ABC Grey’s Anatomy
CBS CSI
NBC The Office / The Office/SNL Thursday Night Live (9:30)
Fox Kitchen Nightmares
CW Supernatural

10 PM

ABC Life on Mars
CBS Eleventh Hour
NBC ER

FRIDAY

8 PM

ABC Supernanny
CBS The Ghost Whisperer
NBC Crusoe
Fox Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?
CW Everybody Hates Chris / The Game (8:30)

9 PM

ABC Wife Swap
CBS The Ex List
NBC Deal or No Deal
Fox Don’t Forget the Lyrics!
CW America’s Next Top Model (Encore Presentation)

10 PM

ABC 20/20
CBS Numb3rs
NBC Life

SATURDAY

8 PM

ABC College Football
CBS Crimetime Saturday
NBC Dateline NBC
Fox Cops / Cops (8:30)

9 PM

ABC College Football / Movie
CBS Crimetime Saturday
NBC Knight Rider (Encores)
Fox America’s Most Wanted

10 PM

ABC College Football / Movie
CBS 48 Hours Mystery
NBC Law & Order: SVU (Encores)

SUNDAY

7 PM

ABC America’s Funniest Home Videos
CBS 60 Minutes
NBC Football Night in America
Fox The OT (NFL post-game)

8 PM

ABC Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
CBS The Amazing Race
NBC NBC Sunday Night Football
Fox The Simpsons / King of the Hill (8:30)

9 PM

ABC Desperate Housewives
CBS Cold Case
NBC NBC Sunday Night Football
Fox Family Guy / American Dad (9:30)

10 PM

ABC Brothers & Sisters
CBS The Unit
NBC NBC Sunday Night Football

Posted under tv news, watch list

This post was written by Shawna on May 16, 2008

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Upfronts 2008: Fox announces fall schedule

Sorry for the lack of commentary right now — I will update later with my thoughts. Suffice to say that from a geek angle there’s a lot to love here.

FOX ANNOUNCES PRIMETIME SLATE FOR 2008-2009 SEASON

TWO NEW DRAMAS, THREE NEW COMEDIES AND ONE UNSCRIPTED SERIES JOIN SCHEDULE

HIGHLY ANTICIPATED J.J. ABRAMS DRAMA “FRINGE” ALONG WITH COMEDY “DO NOT DISTURB” (working title) DEBUT IN FALL

JOSS WHEDON’S “DOLLHOUSE” AND NEW UNSCRIPTED SERIES “SECRET MILLIONAIRE” TO PREMIERE MIDSEASON

NEW ANIMATED COMEDIES “THE CLEVELAND SHOW” (working title) AND “SIT DOWN, SHUT UP” (working title) DEBUT IN SPRING

FOX Kicks Off Season Early With Special Two-Hour Premieres Week of August 25

New York (Thursday, May 15, 2008) Peter Liguori, Chairman, Entertainment; and Kevin Reilly, President, Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company, today unveiled the FOX primetime schedule for the 2008-2009 television season speaking before the national advertising community at New York City Center.

“Broadcast television needs a jolt. We feel it’s our responsibility, as the No. 1 network for the last four seasons, to provide that electricity,” said Liguori. “The goal of our business is entertaining viewersthey’re our lifeblood, and it’s incumbent upon us to make sure their first and favorite entertainment destination is FOX.”

Reilly added, “We’re going to make plenty of noise and yet potentially have more stability and success than we’ve had historically in the fourth quarter. We’ll be focused in the fall with two new series one comedy and one drama and then use our big assets in January to launch an even more powerful second season.”

The new event drama premiering this fall is FRINGE, a fantastical thriller from acclaimed writer/producer J.J. Abrams (“Lost”), Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman (“Star Trek,” “Mission: Impossible III,” “Alias”). Joshua Jackson (“Dawson’s Creek”), John Noble (“Lord of the Rings”) and newcomer Anna Torv star as an unlikely trio who uncover a deadly mystery involving a series of unbelievable events and realize they may be a part of a larger, more disturbing pattern that blurs the line between science fiction and technology.

The new comedy slated for fall is DO NOT DISTURB (working title), an upstairs/downstairs workplace comedy starring Jerry O’Connell (“Crossing Jordan”) and Niecy Nash (“Reno 911!”) as the management team behind one the hottest and hippest hotels in New York City.

One additional drama and one unscripted series will launch in midseason. From Joss Whedon, creator of groundbreaking cult favorites “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Firefly,” comes DOLLHOUSE, a gripping, high-action drama starring Eliza Dushku (“Tru Calling”) as Echo, a member of an underground group of “Actives” who have their personalities wiped clean so they can be imprinted with any number of new personas to carry out a variety of missions. The Actives don’t just pretend to be new people they become new people, yet they are never aware they are actually pawns in someone else’s game. SECRET MILLIONAIRE is a heart-warming new unscripted series that focuses on a different millionaire each week, who goes undercover to some of America’s most disadvantaged areas in search of everyday heroes to possibly change their lives forever.

Two new animated comedies will also join the schedule in the spring. From the creators of FAMILY GUY and AMERICAN DAD, comes THE CLEVELAND SHOW (working title), the story of what happens when FAMILY GUY’s Cleveland Brown moves to Stoolbend, VA, to make good on a promise to his high school sweetheart. SIT DOWN, SHUT UP (working title), created by Emmy Award winner Mitchell Hurwitz (“Arrested Development”), follows a group of unconventional teachers and staff members working at a high school in a small northeastern fishing town who never lose sight of the fact that the students must ALWAYS come second.

FOX kicks off the new season with special two-hour premiere events the week of August 25 including: PRISON BREAK Monday, August 25 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT); FRINGE Tuesday, August 26 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT); BONES Wednesday, August 27 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) and ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER? Friday, August 29 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT).

FOX series returning in 2008-2009 include: 24, AMERICAN DAD, AMERICAN IDOL, AMERICA’S MOST WANTED: AMERICA FIGHTS BACK, ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER?, BONES, COPS, DON’T FORGET THE LYRICS!, FAMILY GUY, HELL’S KITCHEN, HOUSE, KING OF THE HILL, KITCHEN NIGHTMARES, MADtv, THE MOMENT OF TRUTH, PRISON BREAK, THE SIMPSONS, SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE, TALKSHOW WITH SPIKE FERESTEN, TERMINATOR: THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES and ‘TIL DEATH.

Following are the FOX primetime schedule for 2008-2009 and synopses of the new series:

FOX PRIMETIME SCHEDULE: FALL 2008

(All Times ET/PT)

MONDAY

8:00-9:00 PM TERMINATOR: THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES

9:00-10:00 PM PRISON BREAK

TUESDAY

8:00-9:00 PM HOUSE

9:00-10:00 PM FRINGE

WEDNESDAY

8:00-9:00 PM BONES

9:00-9:30 PM ‘TIL DEATH

9:30-10:00 PM DO NOT DISTURB (wt)

THURSDAY

8:00-9:00 PM THE MOMENT OF TRUTH

9:00-10:00 PM KITCHEN NIGHTMARES

FRIDAY

8:00-9:00 PM ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER?

9:00-10:00 PM DON’T FORGET THE LYRICS!

SATURDAY

8:00-8:30 PM COPS

8:30-9:00 PM COPS

9:00-10:00 PM AMERICA’S MOST WANTED: AMERICA FIGHTS BACK

11:00 PM-Midnight MADtv

Midnight-12:30 AM TALKSHOW WITH SPIKE FERESTEN

SUNDAY

7:00-8:00 PM THE OT (NFL post-game)

8:00-8:30 PM THE SIMPSONS

8:30-9:00 PM KING OF THE HILL

9:00-9:30 PM FAMILY GUY

9:30-10:00 PM AMERICAN DAD

FOX PRIMETIME SCHEDULE: BEGINNING JANUARY 2009

(All Times ET/PT)

MONDAY

8:00-9:00 PM DOLLHOUSE

9:00-10:00 PM 24

TUESDAY

8:00-9:00 PM AMERICAN IDOL

9:00-10:00 PM FRINGE

WEDNESDAY

8:00-9:00 PM HOUSE

9:00-9:30 PM AMERICAN IDOL Results Show

9:30-10:00 PM TBA Comedy

THURSDAY

8:00-9:00 PM HELL’S KITCHEN

9:00-10:00 PM SECRET MILLIONAIRE

FRIDAY

8:00-9:00 PM BONES

9:00-9:30 PM ‘TIL DEATH

9:30-10:00 PM DO NOT DISTURB (wt)

SATURDAY

8:00-8:30 PM COPS

8:30-9:00 PM COPS

9:00-10:00 PM AMERICA’S MOST WANTED: AMERICA FIGHTS BACK

11:00 PM-Midnight MADtv

Midnight-12:30 AM TALKSHOW WITH SPIKE FERESTEN

SUNDAY

7:00-7:30 PM COMEDY ENCORES

7:30-8:00 PM COMEDY ENCORES

8:00-8:30 PM THE SIMPSONS

8:30-9:00 PM KING OF THE HILL (January) / SIT DOWN, SHUT UP (wt) (spring)

9:00-9:30 PM FAMILY GUY

9:30-10:00 PM AMERICAN DAD (January) / THE CLEVELAND SHOW (wt) (spring)

2008-2009 FOX PRIMETIME SCHEDULE

NEW SERIES SYNOPSES

The following new drama will premiere this fall on FOX:

FRINGE (Tuesdays, 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT): From J.J. Abrams (“Lost”), Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, the team behind “Star Trek,” “Mission: Impossible III” and “Alias,” comes a new drama that will thrill, terrify and explore the blurring line between science fiction and reality. When an international flight lands at Boston’s Logan Airport and the passengers and crew have all died grisly deaths, FBI Special Agent OLIVIA DUNHAM (newcomer Anna Torv) is called in to investigate. After her partner, Special Agent JOHN SCOTT (Mark Valley, “Boston Legal”), is nearly killed during the investigation, a desperate Olivia searches frantically for someone to help, leading her to DR. WALTER BISHOP (John Noble, “Lord of the Rings”), our generation’s Einstein. There’s only one catch: he’s been institutionalized for the last 20 years, and the only way to question him requires pulling his estranged son PETER (Joshua Jackson, “Dawson’s Creek”) in to help. When Olivia’s investigation leads her to manipulative corporate executive NINA SHARP (Blair Brown, “Altered States”), our unlikely trio along with fellow FBI Agents PHILLIP BROYLES (Lance Reddick, “The Wire”), CHARLIE FRANCIS (Kirk Acevedo, “Oz”) and ASTRID FARNSWORTH (Jasika Nicole, “Law & Order: Criminal Intent”) will discover that what happened on Flight 627 is only a small piece of a larger, more shocking truth.

PRODUCTION COMPANIES: Warner Bros. Television, Bad Robot Productions

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: J.J. Abrams, Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, Bryan Burk, Jeff Pinkner, Alex Graves (pilot)

WRITERS: J.J. Abrams, Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman

DIRECTOR: Alex Graves

CAST: Anna Torv as Olivia Dunham, Joshua Jackson as Peter Bishop, John Noble as Walter Bishop, Lance Reddick as Phillip Broyles, Kirk Acevedo as Charlie Francis, Mark Valley as John Scott, Blair Brown as Nina Sharp, Jasika Nicole as Astrid Farnsworth

The new comedy premiering this fall is:

DO NOT DISTURB (working title) (Wednesdays, 9:30-10:00 PM ET/PT): DO NOT DISTURB (working title) is a hilarious workplace comedy set at one of New York City’s hottest and hippest hotels: The Inn. Named one of the Big Apple’s “10 Best Places to Stay,” The Inn is just that the “in” place to be, with its chic dcor, stylish staff and celebrity clientele. Behind the scenes, however, the upstairs/downstairs dynamic tells quite a different story. The hotel’s top-notch reputation and sophisticated look is due in large part to NEAL (Jerry O’Connell, “Crossing Jordan”) at least in his opinion. Although The Inn’s charismatic owner R.J. (guest star Robert Wagner) takes all the credit, Neal is the egotistical, hyper-stylish, detail-oriented general manager who will do whatever it takes to keep the hotel and its employees up to his standards. RHONDA (Niecy Nash, “Reno 911!”) is the head of Human Resources who also keeps Neal’s demands in check. She’s brash, fabulous and brutally honest and runs the HR department from her bullpen downstairs with a set of rules that are all her own. Rhonda does her best to keep the back of the house in line and the front of the house out of trouble. At the front desk handling check-in while wearing 6-inch Manolos is NICOLE (Molly Stanton, “Twins”), an aging model who is svelte, cynical and slightly starving. Fresh from Nebraska is JASON (Brando Eaton, “Zoey 101”), the nave bellman who would prefer to work behind-the-scenes, but was hired to show off his chiseled face and perfect pecs at the front of the hotel. The downstairs staff includes MOLLY (Jolene Purdy, “Donnie Darko”), a reservations clerk who dreams of pop-singer stardom as much as she craves to be part of the action upstairs; and LARRY (Jesse Tyler Ferguson, “The Class”), the head of housekeeping who spends more time on the phone cleaning up his messes at home than he does cleaning up after the guests upstairs.

PRODUCTION COMPANIES: 20th Century Fox Television; Reveille, LLC; Principato-Young Productions

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Abraham Higginbotham, Howard Owens, Carolyn Bernstein, Paul Young, Peter Principato, Brian Dobbins

WRITER: Abraham Higginbotham

DIRECTOR: Jason Bateman

CAST: Jerry O’Connell as Neal, Niecy Nash as Rhonda, Molly Stanton as Nicole, Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Larry, Brando Eaton as Jason, Jolene Purdy as Molly

GUEST STAR: Robert Wagner as R.J.

The following new drama is slated for a midseason launch:

DOLLHOUSE (Mondays, 8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT): Joss Whedon, creator of groundbreaking cult favorites “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Firefly,” returns to television and reunites with fellow “Buffy” alumna Eliza Dushku for a thrilling new drama, DOLLHOUSE. ECHO (Dushku) is an “Active,” a member of a highly illegal and underground group who have had their personalities wiped clean so they can be imprinted with any number of new personas. Confined to a secret facility known as the “Dollhouse,” Echo and the other Actives including SIERRA (Dichen Lachman, “Neighbours”) and VICTOR (Enver Gjokaj, “The Unit”) carry out engagements assigned by ADELLE (Olivia Williams, “X-Men: The Last Stand,” “Rushmore”), one of the Dollhouse leaders. The engagements cater to the wealthy, powerful and connected, and require the Actives to immerse themselves in all manner of scenarios romantic, criminal, uplifting, dangerous, comical and the occasional “pro bono” good deed. After each scenario, Echo, always under the watchful eye of her handler BOYD (Harry Lennix, “Commander in Chief,” 24), returns to the mysterious Dollhouse where her thoughts, feelings and experiences are erased by TOPHER (Fran Kranz, “Welcome to the Captain”), the Dollhouse’s genius programmer. Echo enters the next scenario with no memory of before. Or does she? As the series progresses, FBI Agent PAUL SMITH (Tahmoh Penikett, “Battlestar Galactica”) pieces together clues that lead him closer to the Dollhouse, while Echo stops forgetting, her memories begin to return and she slowly pieces together her mysterious past. DOLLHOUSE revolves around Echo’s blossoming self-awareness and her desire to discover her true identity. But with each new engagement, comes a new memory and increased danger inside and outside the Dollhouse.

PRODUCTION COMPANIES: 20th Century Fox Television, Mutant Enemy Inc.

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER/WRITER/DIRECTOR: Joss Whedon

CAST: Eliza Dushku as Echo, Olivia Williams as Adelle, Tahmoh Penikett as Paul, Fran Kranz as Topher, Dichen Lachman as Sierra, Enver Gjokaj as Victor, Harry Lennix as Boyd

The new unscripted series joining the FOX midseason schedule is:

SECRET MILLIONAIRE (Thursdays, 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT): SECRET MILLIONAIRE is a dramatic unscripted series that takes America’s wealthiest individuals away from their lavish lifestyles, sprawling mansions and private planes and places them undercover into some of the most impoverished neighborhoods in America. Shot under the guise of a documentary, the series reveals the dramatic personal return that millionaires will get when they leave their fortunes to invest in those less fortunate. Challenged with living on minimum wage, the millionaires will immerse themselves in situations beyond their comprehension. They will work side-by-side with community members and befriend those in need to decide who should ultimately receive their gifts of a lifetime. The millionaires will be touched by the people they meet. Some will inspire with their dedication to helping others, while others will relay stories of overcoming tremendous odds. On the final day, the Secret Millionaires meet with the chosen recipients and reveal their true identity and intention: to give them at least $100,000 oftentimes more of their own money and to change their lives forever. SECRET MILLIONAIRE will engage viewers in important social issues, extol the virtues of volunteerism and change the lives of disadvantaged people and the philanthropists who helped them in unexpected ways.

PRODUCTION COMPANY: RDF USA

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Chris Coelen, Greg Goldman, Bruce Toms

The new animated comedies joining the schedule in the spring include:

THE CLEVELAND SHOW (working title) (Sundays, 9:30-10:00 PM ET/PT): Many years ago, CLEVELAND BROWN (voiced by Mike Henry) was a high school student madly in love with a beautiful girl named DONNA. Much to his dismay, his love went unrequited, and Donna wound up marrying another man. Cleveland once told Donna he would always love her, and if this man ever done her wrong, he’d be there when she called. Well, this man done her wrong. Donna’s husband skipped town with another woman, leaving Donna with a daughter and a baby. Now she’s come to Cleveland and offered him another chance at love. Unattached after the Loretta-Quagmire debacle and true to his word, Cleveland joyously accepts and he and CLEVELAND JR. move to Stoolbend, VA, to join their new family. Once in Stoolbend, Cleveland has a few surprises in store for him, including a flirtatious new stepdaughter, a 5-year-old stepson who loves the ladies, as well as a collection of neighbors that includes a loudmouth redneck couple, a British family seemingly stuck in the Victorian era and a family of bears living at the end of the block. FAMILY GUY was only the beginning. Get ready for THE CLEVELAND SHOW (working title)!

PRODUCTION COMPANY: 20th Century Fox Television

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Seth MacFarlane, Rich Appel, Mike Henry

VOICE CAST: Mike Henry as Cleveland Brown

SIT DOWN, SHUT UP (working title) (Sundays, 8:30-9:00 PM ET/PT): From Emmy Award-winning writer Mitchell Hurwitz (“Arrested Development”) and Eric and Kim Tannenbaum (“Two and a Half Men”) comes SIT DOWN, SHUT UP (working title), an animated comedy that focuses on the lives of eight staff members at a high school in a small northeastern fishing town (Go Baiters!) who never lose sight of the fact that the children must ALWAYS come second. We watch them grapple with their own egos, needs and personal agendas, their petty insecurities and prejudices, unrequited loves, and ruthless battles for power and that’s just at the staff meeting. SUE SEZNO (Kenan Thompson, “Saturday Night Live”), a woman who frequently says “no,” is the acting principal of the school (the actual principal is recovering from a series of unfortunate accidents that might be seen as escape attempts). Then there’s Vice Principal STUART PROZACKIAN (Will Forte, “Saturday Night Live”) who has a terrifically positive and upbeat attitude… possibly from the performance-enhancing medication he’s been secretly put on by the other teachers. There is one educator who feels the focus should be on academics, but despite the old adage, at this school, those who can teach, teach gym and that’s where LARRY SLIMP (Jason Bateman, “Juno,” “Arrested Development”) has been exiled to. Immensely frustrated, Larry nurses a crush on science teacher MIRACLE GROHE (Maria Bamford, “Stuart Little 2”), a woman whose superficial grasp on science is balanced by her superficial grasp on spirituality. Rounding out the staff is the aging German teacher WILLARD DEUTSCHEBOG (Henry Winkler, “Arrested Development,” “Happy Days”), a deeply defeated man whose yearbook quotation reads “If I believed in reincarnation, I’d kill myself tonight.” Uptight HELEN KLENCH (Cheri Oteri, “Saturday Night Live”) is a librarian whose life’s work in research and archiving can now be surpassed by the average Google search from the average cell phone. Proud ANDREW SAPIEN (Nick Kroll, “Best Week Ever,” “Cavemen”) is the flamboyant drama teacher. ENNIS HOFFTARD (Will Arnett, “Arrested Development”) is a fellow teacher and a self-obsessed body builder who yearns to be thought of as a “cool dude” by his students. And finally there’s HAPPY (Tom Kenny, “SpongeBob SquarePants”), the plotting secretive custodian who’s assumed to be Hispanic despite the fact that his real name is Muhannad Sabeeh Fa’ach Nuaba. With a distinctive new look a combination of animation against a live-action backdrop SIT DOWN, SHUT UP is a series for the young and old at heart. It lampoons modern society while exposing the dreams, flaws and struggling humanity of our first and most formative authority figures: teachers.

PRODUCTION COMPANIES: Sony Pictures Television, 20th Century Fox Television, Granada America, Tantamount

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Mitchell Hurwitz, Eric Tannenbaum, Kim Tannenbaum, Bill Oakley, Josh Weinstein

CAST: Will Arnett as Ennis, Maria Bamford as Miracle, Jason Bateman as Larry, Will Forte as Stuart, Tom Kenny as Happy, Nick Kroll as Andrew, Cheri Oteri as Helen, Kenan Thompson as Sue, Henry Winkler as Willard

Posted under Uncategorized

This post was written by Shawna on May 15, 2008

Tags: , , , , ,

Upfronts 2008: CBS announces fall schedule

CBS has 18 shows returning to the schedule. The most significant change is the creation of a new comedy “block” on Wednesday night, with “The New Adventures of Old Christine” and “Project Gary”, a new series. As earlier reported, they’ve picked up “The Mentalist”, “Eleventh Hour” and “The Ex List” for dramas and also picked up “Worst Week” as a new half hour on Monday night after “Two and a Half Men”. There are a few time period changes, but nothing earth shattering. “Harper’s Island” has been picked up for midseason.

CBS has had the advantage of stability in their schedule the last few years, what with the CSI franchise and their other crime procedurals. Adding The Mentalist will give them yet another crime procedural to potentially build from, and Eleventh Hour also feels like a good fit.

The most curious pick up is “The Ex List” which strays a bit from the CBS drama profile…this is the kind of show you’d expect to pop up on ABC. It’s not a bad thing for them to target a younger female demo, just interesting. I know that is small consolation to the “Moonlight” fans, however.

Here is the CBS press release in full, with the schedule:

CBS ANNOUNCES NEW 2008-2009 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE

Five New Series Added: Two Comedies and Three Dramas

CBS Expands Comedy Lineup, Adding New Block on Wednesday 8:00-9:00 PM

Two New Dramatic Series to Launch Backed by “NCIS” and “CSI” Lead-Ins

New Series That Blends Comedy, Drama and Romance Joins Fridays Top-Rated Lineup

Eighteen Current Series Return to the Schedule

New Murder Mystery “Harper’s Island” Ordered for Mid-Season

CBS announced today its 2008-2009 Fall Primetime Lineup, featuring five new series – two comedies and three dramas – and the launch of a new comedy block on Wednesdays.

The new series include ELEVENTH HOUR, a dramatic thriller from producer Jerry Bruckheimer about a special advisor to the government who investigates scientific crises and oddities; THE MENTALIST, starring Simon Baker as a former celebrity psychic-turned- detective who uses his gifted skills of observation and expertise at “reading” people to solve crimes; THE EX LIST, a sexy comedic drama about a 30-something woman who searches her past relationships to find her future husband; and the comedies PROJECT GARY, starring Jay Mohr and Paula Marshall as dueling ex-spouses and parents trying to move forward with new relationships; and WORST WEEK about a good guy who is always trying to do the right thing, yet something always goes wrong – especially when he’s around his girlfriend’s parents.

“We’ve been looking to expand our comedy lineup, and we now have the depth and development to make the move,” said Nina Tassler, President, CBS Entertainment. “Monday is already television’s signature night for comedy and we think we can make the case that CBS is the signature network for comedy overall.”

Added Tassler, “Our new dramas put a character twist on the highly successful procedural form with two exciting new leads in Simon Baker and Rufus Sewell. And, rounding out the new slate is a very unique series with a dynamic young actress (Elizabeth Reaser, “Grey’s Anatomy”) that blends comedy, drama and romance in a concept that will have everybody thinking about their personal ‘ex list.’ ”

The freshman series will join 18 returning programs on the current CBS lineup.

CBS will return network television’s Number One drama franchise – CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION; CSI: MIAMI, CSI: NY – the Number One comedy, TWO AND A HALF MEN; the Number One news magazine, 60 MINUTES; and two franchise reality series -SURVIVOR and the five-time Emmy Award-winning THE AMAZING RACE.

Also returning are: THE BIG BANG THEORY, HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER, NCIS, WITHOUT A TRACE, THE NEW ADVENTURES OF OLD CHRISTINE, CRIMINAL MINDS, GHOST WHISPERER, NUMB3RS, COLD CASE, THE UNIT, 48 HOURS MYSTERY and CRIMETIME SATURDAY.

The new 2008-2009 schedule is:

On Monday, CBS adds a new comedy to television’s top-rated comedy lineup. From 8:00-9:00 PM, the popular young adult comedy block of THE BIG BANG THEORY and HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER returns. Television’s top comedy TWO AND A HALF MEN remains at 9:00 PM and serves as a lead-in for the new comedy WORST WEEK at 9:30 PM. CSI: MIAMI, the night’s top scripted series, returns for its seventh season at 10:00 PM.

On Tuesday, NCIS opens the night at 8:00 PM and the hit drama WITHOUT A TRACE moves to 10:00 PM, creating a hammock position for the new drama THE MENTALIST at 9:00 PM.

On Wednesday, CBS opens a new night of comedy. The critically acclaimed THE NEW ADVENTURES OF OLD CHRISTINE, starring Emmy Award winner Julia Louis-Dreyfus, starts the night at 8:00 PM, leading into the new comedy PROJECT GARY. The successful tandem of CRIMINAL MINDS and CSI: NY return from 9:00-11:00 PM.

On Thursday, CBS adds a new drama to television’s most-watched night. SURVIVOR returns at 8:00 PM, where it continues to dominate its time period, followed by the night’s highest-rated show, CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION, which provides a strong lead-in for the new suspenseful thriller ELEVENTH HOUR at 10:00 PM.

CBS adds a unique new series to its top-rated Friday. GHOST WHISPERER, starring Jennifer Love Hewitt, returns at 8:00 PM leading into another female-lead show, THE EX LIST, at 9:00 PM, capped by the night’s highest rated scripted series NUMB3RS at 10:00 PM.

Saturdays will feature CBS’s CRIMETIME programming from 8:00-10:00 PM, followed by 48 HOURS MYSTERY, the night’s top-rated program.

On Sunday, the perennial Number One news magazine, 60 MINUTES, kicks off its 41st season at 7:00 PM, followed by the return of the five-time Emmy Award-winning reality series THE AMAZING RACE at 8:00 PM. The successful crime drama COLD CASE remains at 9:00 PM and the action drama THE UNIT joins the night at 10:00 PM.

In addition to the new series for fall, the network announced the pick up of two programs for midseason. The new drama, HARPER’S ISLAND, is a murder mystery that unfolds as friends and family attend week-long festivities at a destination wedding on a secluded and picturesque island off the coast of Seattle, infamous for a homicidal maniac’s rampage seven years ago. Also picked up for midseason is the comedy RULES OF ENGAGEMENT.

The new comedies are:

WORST WEEK is a comedy about Sam Briggs, an entertainment magazine editor who will do anything to please his girlfriend’s parents … but instead becomes a one-man wrecking crew whenever he’s around them. Sam (Kyle Bornheimer, “Jericho”) and his girlfriend, Melanie Clayton (Erinn Hayes, “Kitchen Confidential”), have only one hurdle left to clear as they start their life together: breaking the news to Mel’s conservative parents that they have a wedding in the works and a baby on the way. Dick (Kurtwood Smith, “That ’70s Show”), a stern Judge, and his wife Angela (Nancy Lenehan, “My Name is Earl”), are protective of their daughter, and are really trying to let go of the anger they feel toward Sam … after all, disaster follows whenever he visits their house. But despite his best efforts, every time Sam takes one positive step forward in winning over his future in-laws, he inevitably takes two crushing steps back. But with support and love from Melanie who stands up for him despite his knack for making himself look bad, Sam will hopefully charm his way into her family. Emmy Award winner Adam Bernstein (“30 Rock”) directed the pilot. Matt Tarses (“Scrubs”) and Jimmy Mulville (“Whose Line Is It Anyway?”) are the executive producers for Universal Media Studios and CBS Paramount Network Television.

PROJECT GARY stars Jay Mohr (“Ghost Whisperer”) and Paula Marshall (“Nip/Tuck”) in a comedy about Gary Barnes, a recently single painting contractor, and his controlling ex-wife, Allison, who face post-divorce mayhem after 15 years of marriage as they each embark on new relationships. He’s the fun parent and she’s the strict one. Together, they share custody of their two children – Louise (Laura Marano, “Without a Trace”), a politically correct and environmentally conscious 11-year-old, and Tom (Ryan Malgarini, “How to Eat Fried Worms”), their socially awkward 14-year-old son who is nervous around girls. Charming and acerbic, Gary hasn’t dated since the split, but finally connects with Vanessa (Jaime King, “The Class”), a single mother whose condo he was hired to paint. He dreads telling Allison about Vanessa because it doesn’t adhere to her belief in their marriage counselor’s book, “Rules for the Perfect Divorce.” However, when Allison tells him that she’s engaged to their shrink, all bets are off and Gary decides it’s time to move forward. Now, in pursuit of post-marriage happiness, Gary must juggle his eclectic world of an ex-wife, their two kids, their shrink and his gorgeous new girlfriend. Ed Yeager (“Still Standing”) and Ric Swartzlander (“8 Simple Rules”) are the executive producers for ABC Studios and CBS Paramount Network Television.

The new dramas are:

THE MENTALIST stars Golden Globe Award nominee Simon Baker (“The Devil Wears Prada”) as Patrick Jane, a detective and independent consultant with the California Bureau of Investigation (CBI), who has a remarkable track record for solving serious crimes by using his razor sharp skills of observation. Within the Bureau, Jane is notorious for his blatant lack of protocol and his semi-celebrity past as a psychic medium, whose paranormal abilities he now admits he feigned. Jane’s role in cracking a series of tough high-profile cases is greatly valued by his fellow agents. However, no-nonsense Senior Agent Teresa Lisbon (Robin Tunney, “Prison Break”) openly resists having Jane in her unit and alternates between reluctantly acknowledging Jane’s usefulness and blasting him for his theatrics, narcissism and dangerous lack of boundaries. Lisbon’s team includes agents Kimball Cho (Tim Kang, “Rambo”), Wayne Rigsby (Owain Yeoman, “The Nine”), and rookie member Grace Van Pelt (Amanda Righetti, “The O.C.”), who all think Jane’s a loose cannon but admire his charm and knack for clearing cases. Bruno Heller (creator of “Rome”) is creator/executive producer, and Emmy Award winner David Nutter (“Band of Brothers”) is the executive producer for Warner Bros. Television.

ELEVENTH HOUR from acclaimed producer Jerry Bruckheimer follows Dr. Jacob Hood (Rufus Sewell, “The Illusionist”), a brilliant biophysicist and special science advisor to the government, as he investigates scientific crises and oddities. His jurisdiction is absolute and Hood is dogged in his pursuit of those who would abuse and misuse scientific discoveries and breakthroughs for their own gain. His passion and crusade is to protect the substance of science from those with nefarious motives. He is called in at the eleventh hour and he represents the last line of defense. Based on the British miniseries by acclaimed science-fiction writer Stephen Gallagher, the series is executive produced by Bruckheimer (“CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” “Pirates of the Caribbean”), Jonathan Littman (“CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” “Cold Case”), Danny Cannon (“CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” “CSI: Miami”), Cyrus Voris (“Bulletproof Monk”), Ethan Reiff (“Sleeper Cell”), Mick Davis (“Wake of Death”), and Paul Buccieri (“Fashion House”) for Jerry Bruckheimer Television in association with Warner Bros. Television.

THE EX LIST is a comedic drama about Bella Bloom (Elizabeth Reaser, “Grey’s Anatomy”) – a single, 30-something, successful business owner who is surprised to learn from a psychic that she’s already dated her future husband AND there’s a catch: if she doesn’t find him in the next year, she’ll remain alone forever. During a bachelorette party for her sister, Daphne (Rachel Boston, “American Dreams”), Bella learns from the psychic she must revisit her past relationships and sort through the mistakes to find her soul mate. Skeptical, Bella begins to analyze every past liaison and failed romance with her close circle of friends, Augie (Adam Rothenberg, “Mad Money”), an endearing guy who has listened to Bella’s love woes since college, Vivian (Alex Breckenridge, “Dirt”), Augie’s long-term girlfriend, and Cyrus (Amir Talai, “Campus Ladies”), who’s chronically unemployed and full of wry observations. Once Bella witnesses proof of the psychic’s other predictions, her cynicism disappears and she begins her search. Along her trip down break-up lane, Bella is determined to remain optimistic and receptive, believing that when destiny reopens doors to the past, every relationship can matter in the future. Diane Ruggiero (“Veronica Mars”) and Jonathan Levin (“Charmed”) are executive producers for Twentieth Century Fox Television.

Following is the 2008-2009 CBS Television Network primetime schedule:

CBS TELEVISON NETWORK

2008-2009 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE

(N=New, NT=New Time, all times ET/PT)

MONDAY

8:00-8:30 PM THE BIG BANG THEORY
8:30-9:00 PM HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER
9:00-9:30 PM TWO AND A HALF MEN
9:30-10:00 PM WORST WEEK (N)
10:00-11:00 PM CSI: MIAMI

TUESDAY

8:00-9:00 PM NCIS
9:00-10:00 PM THE MENTALIST (N)
10:00-11:00 PM WITHOUT A TRACE (NT)

WEDNESDAY

8:00-8:30 PM THE NEW ADVENTURES OF OLD CHRISTINE (NT)
8:30-9:00 PM PROJECT GARY (N)
9:00-10:00 PM CRIMINAL MINDS
10:00-11:00 PM CSI: NY

THURSDAY

8:00-9:00 PM SURVIVOR
9:00-10:00 PM CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION
10:00-11:00 PM ELEVENTH HOUR (N)

FRIDAY

8:00-9:00 PM GHOST WHISPERER
9:00-10:00 PM THE EX LIST (N)
10:00-11:00 PM NUMB3RS

SATURDAY

8:00-9:00 PM CRIMETIME SATURDAY
9:00-10:00 PM CRIMETIME SATURDAY
10:00-11:00 PM 48 HOURS MYSTERY

SUNDAY

7:00-8:00 PM 60 MINUTES
8:00-9:00 PM THE AMAZING RACE
9:00-10:00 PM COLD CASE
10:00-11:00 PM THE UNIT (NT)

About CBS Television Network

America’s most watched television network, CBS was established in 1928, when founder William Paley purchased 16 independent radio stations and christened them the Columbia Broadcast System. Today, it has more than 200 television stations and affiliates reaching virtually every home in the United States. The Network has the Number One drama franchise on network television, CSI, CSI: MIAMI and CSI: NY; Number One newsmagazine, 60 MINUTES; Number One comedy, TWO AND A HALF MEN; and the Number One daytime drama, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS. Its programming arms include CBS Entertainment, CBS News and CBS Sports.

About CBS Corporation

CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS.A and CBS) is a mass media company with constituent parts that reach back to the beginnings of the broadcast industry, as well as newer businesses that operate on the leading edge of the media industry. The Company, through its many and varied operations, combines broad reach with well-positioned local businesses, all of which provide it with an extensive distribution network by which it serves audiences and advertisers in all 50 states and key international markets. It has operations in virtually every field of media and entertainment, including broadcast television (CBS and The CW – a joint venture between CBS Corporation and Warner Bros. Entertainment), cable television (Showtime and CSTV Networks), local television (CBS Television Stations), television production and syndication (CBS Paramount Network Television and CBS Television Distribution), radio (CBS Radio), advertising on out-of-home media (CBS Outdoor), publishing (Simon & Schuster), interactive media (CBS Interactive), music (CBS Records), licensing and merchandising (CBS Consumer Products) and video/DVD (CBS Home Entertainment). For more information, log on to http://www.cbscorporation.com/.

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This post was written by Shawna on May 14, 2008

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Upfronts 2008: CW announces fall schedule

The following is a transcript of a meeting at the CW just prior to the release of their schedule

INT. BOARDROOM – DAY

DAWN O.
Good morning everybody!

Mumbles from rest of table.

DAWN O.
Okay, so now that we don’t have to program the weekend, what have we got?

MINION #1
Well, we’ve got Gossip Girl.

DAWN O.
OMG! I love that show so hard!

MINION #2
Yes, for real, Ms. Ostroff.

MINION #1
But it’s only got about two million viewers.

DAWN O.
Yeah, but it’s so good!

MINION #1
Well, since it does seem to be generating some good press for us, we’ve decided to focus on that core demographic of 14 to 30 year old women for a couple of new shows.

DAWN O.
These aren’t like that stupid safari show, right?

MINION #2
No way! One is called “Surviving the Filthy Rich”.

DAWN O.
Love it!

MINION #1
The other is an updated “Beverly Hills, 90210”.

DAWN O.
We are so owning ABC’s butt with women next year. So what else do we have?

MINION #1
We’ve got Top Model, still our highest rated program.

DAWN O.
That reminds me, make sure Tyra gets the CW gift basket. Make sure she gets a mug.

MINION #2
Right-o! Anyway, we have great news! Tyra had this idea of another show she doodled on a napkin the other day. Something about women who love fashion competing for a prize at a fashion magazine. It’s ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ as a competition!

DAWN O.
What, like designers?

MINION #2
No, it’s not ProjRun exactly…we’re calling it Stylista.

DAWN O.
OMG! I love Tim Gunn. Can we get him to host this show for us?

MINION #1
He’s busy.

DAWN O.
Heidi?

MINION #1
Busy. And before you ask, yes, Michael Kors is busy, as is Carson Kressley.

DAWN O.
(heavy sigh)
Fine. Who do we have?

MINION #2
No one as yet. But once we announce this, I’m sure they’ll be beating down our door!

DAWN O.
Moving on. Did we finally get rid of that wrestling thing?

MINION #2
As you requested. MyNetworkTV is taking it.

DAWN O.
Who?

MINION #2
You know, that network Fox owns that no one watches.

DAWN O.
(sniff)
I can’t believe they can stay on the air with no viewers.

MINION #1
We’re still on the air.

DAWN O.
We have viewers! They just don’t know we’re on TV.

MINION #1
Right. So, since we didn’t really have much else in the development pipeline and you told us we were on a budget, we recommend renewing our core shows for another year. And “Reaper”.

DAWN O.
What’s “Reaper”?

MINION #1
One of our highest rated shows. Right now it’s pulling better numbers than “Gossip Girl” and really haven’t promoted it very strongly.

DAWN O.
Shut your face! Do not blaspheme Gossip Girl! Fine, renew everything. Except that Aliens show. I hate it. Wait, do we have a slot to repeat Top Model?

MINION #2
Not really. Now that we don’t have Sunday night, we don’t have an hour to spare.

DAWN O.
I really like that we show Model twice a week. And Tyra owns my soul, so…bump that Devil show…

MINION #1
Reaper?

DAWN O.
Right. That. Move it to midseason or something.

MINION #1
I’m not sure that’s a good idea considering the fanbase…

DAWN O.
JUST DO IT!!

MINION #2
Consider it done, Ms. O.

DAWN O.
Well. I feel very good about this schedule. I just have one question.

MINION #1
What’s that?

DAWN O.
Why are you two the only ones at this meeting?

MINION #2
We’re the only ones in the building. You fired everyone else.

DAWN O.
Oh. So who are you two?

MINION #2
I’m the legal department.

MINION #1
I’m your janitor. And I’m not cleaning up after this crappy schedule. I quit.

DAWN O.
(watches Minion #1 leave)
Whatever! Fine, get out of my face, non-believer! Jeez, you believe that guy?

MINION #2
Not at all.

DAWN O.
Meeting over! I need to go watch Gossip Girl.

The CW PRESS RELEASE AND FALL 2008-09 SCHEDULE FOLLOW:

THE CW ANNOUNCES SCHEDULE FOR 2008-2009 SEASON

BUILDING THE POP CULTURE BUZZ, NEW SEASON LAUNCHES SEPTEMBER 1 WITH SCHEDULE FEATURING RETURNING HITS “GOSSIP GIRL” AND “AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL,” ALONG WITH HIGHLY ANTICIPATED “90210”

Monday Night Features Winning Team of Hit Dramas “Gossip Girl” and “One Tree Hill”

New Neighbors Move in Tuesday Night: “90210” Ensemble Features Original Cast Member Jennie Garth in a Guest Starring Role, Followed By New Drama “Surviving the Filthy Rich”

Top-Rated “America’s Next Top Model” Leads Into New Fashion Reality Series “Stylista” on Wednesdays

Fan Favorites “Smallville” and “Supernatural” Return on Thursdays

Friday Night Gets a Counter-Programming Comedy Makeover With “Everybody Hates Chris” and “The Game,” Followed By An “America’s Next Top Model” Encore

Three Hours of Original Programming on Sunday From Media Rights Capital

The Devil Returns on “Reaper” for Midseason

May 13, 2008 (New York, New York) – The CW Network announced a fall launch date of September 1 and unveiled the schedule for its 2008-2009 season today at a presentation and party for advertisers, affiliates and national media in the Tent at Lincoln Center. The announcement was made by Dawn Ostroff, President of Entertainment, The CW.

“With shows that everyone is talking about, from Gossip Girl’ and America’s Next Top Model’ to our upcoming 90210,’ our new lineup has the best Monday-Friday schedule flow we have ever had at The CW,” said Ostroff. “We are zeroed in on our target demo of young women 18-34 with both new and returning series, and each programming block provides a strong promotional platform for the following night. We’re confident that the quality of our shows for the fall season will make The CW the destination for young women.”

On Monday, the network will continue the successful combination of GOSSIP GIRL and ONE TREE HILL. GOSSIP GIRL was the most buzz-worthy show of last season and had the highest concentration of female teens of any series on broadcast television. GOSSIP GIRL will return to its 8:00-9:00 p.m. slot, followed by ONE TREE HILL from 9:00-10:00 p.m. ONE TREE HILL’s loyal fan base is the second youngest on television, and the series continued to grow last season despite its time period move.

On Tuesday, 90210, the most eagerly anticipated series of the fall, will premiere in the 8:00-9:00 p.m. timeslot. A fresh interpretation of the iconic 1990’s drama “Beverly Hills, 90210,” this spin-off features a dynamic cast of up-and-coming stars, familiar faces such as Lori Loughlin (“Summerland”) and Jessica Walter (“Arrested Development”), and guest star Jennie Garth, who will reprise her role from the original series. 90210 promises to deliver all the drama and excitement of the original series. In the 9:00-10:00 p.m. timeslot, the new series SURVIVING THE FILTHY RICH brings a distinctively witty note to the Tuesday lineup. Based on the best-selling book “How To Teach Filthy Rich Girls” by Zoe Dean, SURVIVING THE FILTHY RICH stars JoAnna Garcia (“Reba”) as the live-in tutor to wild and wealthy teenage twin sisters in fabulous Palm Beach. SURVIVING THE FILTHY RICH makes the perfect companion piece for 90210.

On Wednesday, The CW’s top-rated series AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL ranked first in its time period in adults and women 18-34 and was the sixth highest-rated show on television among female teens last season. AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL returns in its successful 8:00-9:00 p.m. timeslot, followed by the new fashion reality show STYLISTA. From the creators of AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL and “Project Runway,” and starring Elle magazine’s Fashion News Director, Anne Slowey, and Creative Director, Joe Zee, STYLISTA is “The Devil Wears Prada” reinvented as a reality series. With tough weekly challenges, 11 hopeful fashion enthusiasts will vie for a coveted editorial job and great prizes. Together, AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL and STYLISTA make up the fall’s most fashionable night of television.

On Thursday, the heroic team of SMALLVILLE and SUPERNATURAL will continue to offer viewers great special effects and gorgeous men. From 8:00-9:00 p.m., SMALLVILLE was The CW’s most-watched and highest-rated scripted series in total viewers and adults 18-49 last season. In the 9:00-10:00 p.m. hour, SUPERNATURAL is The CW’s third most-watched scripted program, despite the highly competitive timeslot.

Big changes are in store on Fridays when The CW will offer the only comedy option of the night with returning hits EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS and THE GAME. The counter-programming theme continues in the 9:00-10:00 hour with an encore presentation of AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL.

As previously announced, The CW is partnering with Media Rights Capital to program the Sunday night primetime block. Details on the individual series will be released at a later date.

For Midseason, the critically acclaimed drama REAPER will return for a second season with The Devil and his bounty hunter.

Following is The CW’s 2008-2009 primetime schedule, a night-by-night breakdown and accompanying details on all the programs.

THE CW’s 2008-2009 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE

MONDAY
8:00-9:00 PM GOSSIP GIRL
9:00-10:00 PM ONE TREE HILL

TUESDAY
8:00-9:00 PM 90210 (New Series)
9:00-10:00 PM SURVIVING THE FILTHY RICH (New Series)

WEDNESDAY
8:00-9:00 PM AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL
9:00-10:00 PM STYLISTA (New Series)

THURSDAY
8:00-9:00 PM SMALLVILLE
9:00-10:00 PM SUPERNATURAL

FRIDAY
8:00-8:30 PM EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS
8:30-9:00 PM THE GAME
9:00-10:00 PM AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL (Encore Presentation)

MONDAY

8:00-9:00 P.M. “GOSSIP GIRL”

Returning for its second season, GOSSIP GIRL is a one-hour drama based on an exclusive group of privileged prep school teens on Manhattan’s Upper East Side whose lives revolve around the blog of the all-knowing albeit ultra-secretive Gossip Girl. No one knows Gossip Girl’s identity, but everyone in this exclusive and complicated vicious circle relies on her website and text messages for the latest scoop. The series stars Blake Lively as Serena van der Woodsen, Leighton Meester as Blair Waldorf, Penn Badgley as Dan Humphrey, Chace Crawford as Nate Archibald, Taylor Momsen as Jenny Humphrey, Ed Westwick as Chuck Bass, Jessica Szohr as Vanessa Abrams, Kelly Rutherford as Lily van der Woodsen and Matthew Settle as Rufus Humphrey. Filmed in New York and based on the popular series of young-adult novels by Cecily von Ziegesar, GOSSIP GIRL is from College Hill Pictures and Alloy Entertainment in association with Warner Bros. Television and CBS Paramount Network Television with executive producers Josh Schwartz (“The O.C.”), Stephanie Savage (“The O.C.”), Leslie Morgenstein (“Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants”) and Bob Levy (“Surviving the Filthy Rich”).

9:00-10:00 P.M. “ONE TREE HILL”

Returning for its sixth season to the town of Tree Hill, last season ONE TREE HILL made the unprecedented move of taking the storylines four years into the future. Season four ended as the young characters graduated high school and season five began post-college, four years later. The show also dipped into the past, returning to incidents and events that impacted the lives of this close group of friends who call Tree Hill home. The series stars Chad Michael Murray as Lucas Scott, James Lafferty as Nathan Scott, Hilarie Burton as Peyton Sawyer, Sophia Bush as Brooke Davis, Bethany Joy Galeotti as Haley James Scott, Lee Norris as Mouth, Antwon Tanner as Skills and Paul Johansson as Dan Scott. ONE TREE HILL was created by Mark Schwahn and is executive produced by Schwahn, Joe Davola, Greg Prange, Mike Tollin and Brian Robbins. ONE TREE HILL is a Tollin/Robbins Production in association with Warner Bros. Television.

TUESDAY

8:00-9:00 P.M. “90210” (New Series)

An edgy, contemporary spin-off of the iconic drama “Beverly Hills, 90210,” the new 90210 looks at life through the eyes of Annie Mills (Shenae Grimes, “Degrassi: The Next Generation”) and her brother Dixon (Tristan Wilds, “The Wire”), whose first day at West Beverly Hills High School leaves no doubt they’re not in Kansas anymore. The Mills family, including dad Harry (casting TBD) and mom Debbie (Lori Loughlin, “Summerland”), has relocated to Beverly Hills to keep an eye on Harry’s mother Tabitha (Jessica Walter, “Arrested Development”), a feisty-but-faded former television star and a charter member of the Betty Ford Clinic. For Annie and Dixon, the awkwardness of being the new kids is made worse by the fact that their dad has taken a job as the high school principal. The school is one big culture shock for Annie, a sweet and friendly girl with a passion for the theater, and Dixon, a star athlete and scholar who was adopted by the Mills family after they took him in as a foster child. Annie and Dixon have a close sibling relationship, which they’ll need to help them cope with all the new cliques and classmates, including Naomi (AnnaLynne McCord, “Nip/Tuck”), a hot, spoiled, rich girl; Ethan (Dustin Milligan, “Runaway”), a popular jock whose abilities rival Dixon’s; Navid (Michael Steger, “The Winner”), an aspiring reporter who heads up the school’s daily newscast; and Silver (Jessica Stroup, “Prom Night”), a rebel who produces and stars in a YouTube-type video series. Even the faculty seems hip and sophisticated at WBHHS, such as smart and funny teacher Ryan Matthews (Ryan Eggold, “Dirt”) and beautiful guidance counselor Kelly Taylor (guest star Jennie Garth, the original “Beverly Hills, 90210”). The Mills family has just begun to realize how much their lives are about to change. 90210 is produced by CBS Paramount Network Television with executive producers Gabe Sachs & Jeff Judah (“Freaks & Geeks”). Mark Piznarski (“Gossip Girl”) is the director and executive producer of the pilot.

9:00-10:00 P.M. “SURVIVING THE FILTHY RICH” (New Series)

Twenty-three-year-old Megan Smith (JoAnna Garcia, “Reba”) has a Yale education, a relentlessly positive attitude and a plan to conquer the world of journalism, despite the fact that she is currently slaving away at a tabloid rag. Megan’s plan is thrown off course when, in one whirlwind day, she gets fired, meets cosmetics mogul Laurel Limoges (casting TBD) and becomes the live-in tutor for Laurel’s twin teen granddaughters in the heady Palm Beach world of wealth and power. The girls, Rose (Lucy Kate Hale, “Bionic Woman”) and Sage (Ashley Newbrough, “The Best Years”), are beautiful, rebellious and less-than-thrilled with their new tutor, but Megan is determined to win them over as she enjoys the perks of her new job – breathtaking private suite, gorgeous convertible and live-in chef Marco (Allan Louis, “Stomp the Yard”). Even the neighbors are fabulous in Palm Beach, and Megan quickly catches the eye of Will (casting TBD), the wealthy and extremely hot dilettante who lives on the estate next door and just happens to be dating Megan’s estranged sister Lily (casting TBD). Completing this romantic quadrangle is Megan’s best friend Charlie (Michael Cassidy, “Smallville,” “The O.C.”), who is secretly in love with her. Despite her own complicated romantic and family relationships, Megan is committed to making a difference in the lives of her two headstrong charges as she navigates the treacherous waters of high society in Palm Beach. SURVIVING THE FILTHY RICH is based on the Alloy Entertainment book “How To Teach Filthy Rich Girls” by best-selling author Zoey Dean (“The A-List”). The series is from Alloy Entertainment in association with Warner Bros. Television and CBS Paramount Network Television with executive producers Rina Mimoun (“Gilmore Girls,” “Everwood”), Bob Levy (“Gossip Girl”) and Leslie Morgenstein (“Gossip Girl,” “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants”). Michael Engler (“30 Rock”) directed the pilot.

WEDNESDAY

8:00-9:00 P.M. “AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL”

Returning for its eleventh cycle, the runaway runway hit series stars Tyra Banks. The show gives real people an opportunity to prove that they can make it in the high-stress, high-stakes world of supermodeling. With mentoring by Tyra Banks and exposure to high-profile fashion-industry gurus, young women of various backgrounds, shapes and sizes must endure a highly accelerated modeling boot camp and face weekly tests to determine who will make the cut as they vie for a professional modeling contract. The executive producers are Ken Mok (“Making the Band”), Tyra Banks and Daniel Soiseth (“Hell’s Kitchen”). The reality series was created by Tyra Banks and developed by Ken Mok and Kenya Barris. AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL is produced by 10 by 10 Entertainment in association with Bankable Productions.

9:00-10:00 P.M. “STYLISTA” (New Series)

If “The Devil Wears Prada” were a reality show, it would be STYLISTA. Eleven aspiring fashion enthusiasts vie for a much-coveted editorial job with Elle magazine. They work as assistants to Elle’s Fashion News Director, Anne Slowey, a demanding but well-respected fashion icon. The competitors will carry out an assistant task and a fashion editorial assignment in each episode. Each week, in consultation with Elle’s Creative Director, Joe Zee, Anne fires one person, until the last assistant standing gets “promoted” to the coveted real-life job opportunity. The grand prize includes a paid editorial position at Elle magazine, a paid lease on a great apartment in Manhattan, and a clothing allowance at H&M, all for one year, valued at $100,000. STYLISTA is from 10 by 10 Entertainment, Inc. and Bankable Incorporated in association with Magic Molehill Productions, Inc. and Warner Horizon Television Inc. with executive producers Tyra Banks, Ken Mok, Eli Holzman, Desiree Gruber and Jane Cha.

THURSDAY

8:00-9:00 P.M. “SMALLVILLE”

Returning for its eighth season, this new interpretation of the enduring Superman mythology and its classic characters blends realism and adventure into an exciting action series. Last season, Clark Kent and Lex Luthor (Michael Rosenbaum) became the sworn enemies that comic book aficionados have always known and loved. The season also brought storylines of Krypton and the El family, including the arrival of Clark’s cousin Kara, a.k.a. Supergirl (Laura Vandervoort), and the return of Brainiac (James Marsters). There were also exciting guest stars from the Superman mythology, including Dean Cain (“Lois & Clark”) and Helen Slater (“Supergirl”). Clark discovered more about his home planet, who his parents were, what his future holds and why he was sent to Earth. The series stars Tom Welling as Clark Kent, Kristin Kreuk as Lana Lang, Erica Durance as Lois Lane and Aaron Ashmore as Jimmy Olsen. Reinterpreting the Superman mythology from its roots, SMALLVILLE was developed for television by Alfred Gough & Miles Millar (“Shanghai Noon,” “Spiderman 2”), based on the DC Comics characters. The executive producers are Kelly Souders & Brian Peterson, Todd Slavkin & Darren Swimmer, James Marshall, Mike Tollin, Brian Robbins and Joe Davola. The series is produced by Tollin/Robbins Productions and Warner Bros. Television. Superman was created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster.

9:00-10:00 P.M “SUPERNATURAL”

Returning for its fourth season, this haunting series follows Sam and Dean Winchester, two brothers bound by tragedy and blood to their dangerous, other-worldly mission. This past season, the clock was ticking as Sam and Dean journeyed into the dark world of the unexplained to find a way to break Dean’s deadly contract with the evil Lilith. The series stars Jared Padalecki as Sam Winchester and Jensen Ackles as Dean Winchester. SUPERNATURAL is from Warner Bros. Television in association with Kripke Enterprises Inc. and Wonderland Sound and Vision, with executive producers Eric Kripke (“Boogeyman”), McG (“Charlie’s Angels,” “The O.C.”), Robert Singer (“Midnight Caller”) and Kim Manners (“The X-Files”).

FRIDAY

8:00-8:30 P.M. “EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS”

Returning for its fourth season, this hit comedy was inspired by the childhood experiences of comedian Chris Rock. Rock also serves as the narrator of this hilarious, touching story of a teenager growing up as the eldest of three children in Brooklyn, New York during the early 1980s. Uprooted to a new neighborhood and bused into a predominantly white middle school two hours away by his strict, hard-working parents, Chris struggled to find his place. At the conclusion of season three, Chris’ excitement over graduation from middle school was ruined when his best friend announced his plans to attend a different high school in the fall. This responsible, resilient adolescent brings a distinct, funny spin to his everyday trials and traumas, in the Golden Globe- and People’s Choice-nominated comedy EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS. The single-camera comedy series stars Tyler James Williams (“Unaccompanied Minors”) as Chris, Terry Crews (“The Longest Yard”) as Julius, Tichina Arnold (“Martin”) as Rochelle, Tequan Richmond (“Ray”) as Drew, Imani Hakim as Tonya and Vincent Martella (“Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo”) as Greg. EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS is a production of CBS Paramount Network Television in association with Chris Rock Enterprises, Inc. and 3 Arts Entertainment. Co-creator and narrator Chris Rock (“Head of State”), co-creator and writer Ali LeRoi (“Head of State”), Michael Rotenberg (“King of the Hill”), Dave Becky (“Lucky Louie”) and Don Reo (“My Wife and Kids”) are executive producers.

8:30-9:00 P.M. “THE GAME”

Returning for its third season, THE GAME is a behind-the-scenes look at the lives of the wives and girlfriends of pro-football players. This comedy tackles the way these women deal with egos, groupies and image consultants and shows how THE GAME is really played among the women behind the athletes. The series stars Tia Mowry (“Sister, Sister”) as Melanie Barnett, Coby Bell (“Third Watch”) as Jason Pitts, Pooch Hall (“Miracle’s Boys”) as Derwin Davis, Hosea Chanchez (“For Your Love”) as Malik Wright, Brittany Daniel (“White Chicks”) as Kelly Pitts and Wendy Raquel Robinson (“The Steve Harvey Show”) as Tasha Mack. THE GAME is a production of Happy Camper Productions and Grammnet Productions in association with CBS Paramount Network Television. Kelsey Grammer (“Frasier,” “Girlfriends”), creator Mara Brock Akil (“Girlfriends,” “Moesha,” “The Jamie Foxx Show”) and Steve Stark serve as executive producers.

9:00-10:00 P.M. “AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL” (Encore Presentation)

Returning for its eleventh cycle, the runaway runway hit series stars Tyra Banks. The show gives real people an opportunity to prove that they can make it in the high-stress, high-stakes world of supermodeling. With mentoring by Tyra Banks and exposure to high-profile fashion-industry gurus, young women of various backgrounds, shapes and sizes must endure a highly accelerated modeling boot camp and face weekly tests to determine who will make the cut as they vie for a professional modeling contract. The executive producers are Ken Mok (“Making the Band”), Tyra Banks and Daniel Soiseth (“Hell’s Kitchen”). The reality series was created by Tyra Banks and developed by Ken Mok and Kenya Barris. AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL is produced by 10 by 10 Entertainment in association with Bankable Productions.

SUNDAY

Details on the original series from The CW’s partnership with Media Rights Capital will be released at a later date.

MIDSEASON

“REAPER”

Returning for its second season, REAPER blends suspense and humor as it follows Sam, a slacker whose world turned upside down on his 21st birthday when he learned that his parents sold his soul to the Devil before he was born. Charged by the Devil himself to be Hell’s bounty hunter, Sam, with the aid of his goofball friends, Sock and Ben, and loyal girlfriend Andi, must track down evil-doers and send them back where they belong. Along the way, Sam has learned a lot about friendship, trust and the line between good and evil. The series stars Bret Harrison as Sam Oliver, Tyler Labine as Bert “Sock” Wysocki, Ray Wise as the Devil, Missy Peregrym as Andi Prendergast, Rick Gonzalez as Ben Gonzalez, Valarie Rae Miller as Josie Miller, Donavon Stinson as Ted and Andrew Airlie as Mr. Oliver. REAPER is from ABC Studios with executive producers Michele Fazekas (“Ed,” “Law & Order, Special Victims Unit”), Tara Butters (“Ed,” “Law & Order, Special Victims Unit”), Mark Gordon (“Grey’s Anatomy,” Criminal Minds”), Deborah Spera (“Criminal Minds”) and Tom Spezialy (“Desperate Housewives”).

Posted under Uncategorized

This post was written by Shawna on May 14, 2008

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Interview with ‘Big Bang Theory’ writer Dave Goetsch

It was a great Geekerati show last night. Dave was very open and informative about writing for TV, the future of television and his geek preferences.

Check out the interview in the sidebar.

Posted under writing

This post was written by Shawna on May 13, 2008

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Bad news for Moonlight fans

Moonlight is cancelled. So is Shark. Not much by way of details, but saw it at Nikki Finke’s blog.

Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood Daily

Posted under Uncategorized

This post was written by Shawna on May 13, 2008

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Quick renewal news

CBS has renewed “How I Met Your Mother” and “The New Adventures of Old Christine”, giving ‘Christine’ a full 22-episode season order! “Rules of Engagement” also received a pick up for next season.

Posted under Uncategorized

This post was written by Shawna on May 13, 2008

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Upfronts 2008: ABC announces fall schedule

Okay, here it is. Most of the changes are reserved for midseason at this point, as most of ABC’s pilots have not been shot. ABC is announcing that next season will be the last for “Boston Legal” and yes, “Scrubs” will be on the fall schedule.

Here’s the ABC 2008-09 lineup:

Mondays

8 p.m. — Dancing with the Stars / Untitled Tyra Banks-Ashton Kutcher [New]
9:30 p.m. — Samantha Who
10pm — The Bachelor / Boston Legal

Tuesdays
8 p.m. — Opportunity Knocks [New]
9 p.m. — Dancing Results Show / Scrubs [New] / Goode Family [New]
10 p.m. — Eli Stone

Wednesdays
8 p.m. -– Pushing Daisies
9 p.m. — Private Practice
10 p.m. — Dirty Sexy Money

Thursdays
8 p.m. — Ugly Betty
9 p.m. — Grey’s Anatomy
10 p.m.– Life on Mars [New]

Fridays
8 p.m. -– Supernanny
9 p.m. -– Wife Swap
10 p.m. –20/20

Sundays
7 p.m. -– America’s Funniest Home Videos
8 p.m. -– Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
9 p.m. –- Desperate Housewives
10 p.m.-– Brothers and Sisters

ABC has a very stable schedule, very few timeslot changes for the core shows. This, of course, is always good for fans, since their shows don’t move around too much. “Life on Mars” appears to be keeping the “Lost” seat warm until January.

Thoughts? Agree/Disagree with ABC’s fall moves? How about their continued strategy of programming all reality Friday nights, rather than jump into the scripted competition (their reality schedule typically places third for the night).

Interesting tidbits from the ABC press release:

And now, for those of you who want more than the basics, below is the ABC press release: (Warning, this is really long!)


ABC UNVEILS 2008-09 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE

New Series Include “The Goode Family,” “Life on Mars,” “Opportunity Knocks,” “Scrubs” And “Untitled Ashton Kutcher/Tyra Banks Project”

Returning Series on the Fall Schedule Include “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” “Boston Legal,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Dirty Sexy Money,” “Eli Stone,” “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Private Practice,” “Pushing Daisies,” “Samantha Who?,” “Supernanny,” “Ugly Betty,” “Wife Swap” and “20/20”

Stephen McPherson, president, ABC Entertainment, today outlined ABC’s plans for next season and unveiled the network’s 2008-09 fall schedule before the advertising and media communities at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall.

Scheduled to debut this fall are new drama “Life on Mars,” and new alternative series “Opportunity Knocks” from executive producer Ashton Kutcher.

Returning series on the fall schedule are “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” “Boston Legal,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Dirty Sexy Money,” “Eli Stone,” “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Private Practice,” “Pushing Daisies,” “Samantha Who?,” “Supernanny,” “Ugly Betty,” “Wife Swap” and “20/20.”

In addition, “Saturday Night College Football” will return for a fourth season.

New series for midseason include “The Goode Family,” “Scrubs” and “Untitled Ashton Kutcher/Tyra Banks Project.”

Other returning series include “According to Jim,” “The Bachelor,” “Lost” and ABC News’ “Primetime: What Would You Do?”

“We’re returning our dominant core group of shows from last fall,” said McPherson. “The few openings we had we’ve filled with the kind of quality programming viewers have come to expect from ABC, and we have a very strong bench. As always, our focus is on delivering the best stories and most memorable characters on TV every day of the week, every week of the year.”

For the 2007-08 TV season, ABC holds second place to an “American Idol” and “Super Bowl”-driven Fox among Adults 18-49. The ABC airs 6 of the Top 15 TV shows this season in the key Adult 18-49 sales demographic, including 3 of the Top 5 scripted series with “Desperate Housewives” (No. 1), “Grey’s” (No. 3) and “Lost” (No. 5). In addition, 4 of the Top 6 most-watched television shows are on ABC. ABC claims 5 of the Top 10 freshman series this season, including the No. 1 new comedy in “Samantha Who?” (also the most-watched new scripted series this season). For the 3rd straight season the Network remains a top destination for affluent viewers, delivering 5 of the Top 10 highest-rated TV series and each of the Top 3 scripted shows among Adults 18-49 in homes w/$100K+ annual income.

ABC was a standout performer during Fall ’07, prior to the strike-related scheduling disruptions, leading its nearest competition (CBS) from the start of the season through the end of November by 11% on average in Adults 18-49. Furthermore, ABC delivered the No. 1 position among young adults on 7 of the first 10 weeks this season, and ranked either first or second on 6 of 7 nights of the week throughout the fall. ABC won the November Sweep in Adults 18-49, its third consecutive year to hold the top spot for the month in the key sales demo.

Editors please note: Shows picked up but not listed on the schedule will debut later in the 2008-09 season. Photographs are available on www.abcmedianet.com.

ABC’s fall primetime schedule is as follows (all times listed are Eastern, with new shows in bold):

DAY / TIME /SERIES

MONDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Dancing with the Stars” 9:30 p.m. “Samantha Who?” 10:00 p.m. “Boston Legal”

TUESDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Opportunity Knocks” 9:00 p.m. “Dancing with the Stars the Results Show” 10:00 p.m. “Eli Stone”

WEDNESDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Pushing Daisies” 9:00 p.m. “Private Practice” 10:00 p.m. “Dirty Sexy Money”

THURSDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Ugly Betty” 9:00 p.m. “Grey’s Anatomy” 10:00 p.m. “Life on Mars”

FRIDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Wife Swap” 9:00 p.m. “Supernanny” 10:00 p.m. “20/20”

SATURDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Saturday Night College Football”

SUNDAY: 7:00 p.m. “America’s Funniest Home Videos” 8:00 p.m. “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” 9:00 p.m. “Desperate Housewives” 10:00 p.m. “Brothers & Sisters”

NEW FALL SERIES

DRAMA

“LIFE ON MARS”

“Life on Mars” is based on the BBC series created by Matthew Graham, Tony Jordan and Ashley Pharoah. The series revolves around Sam Tyler, a modern-day police detective who, after a car crash, mysteriously finds himself transported back to 1973 and still working as a detective.

“Life on Mars” stars Jason O’ Mara as Sam Tyler, Rachelle LeFevre as Annie Cartwright, Colm Meaney as Gene Hunt, Stephanie Jacobsen as Maya, Lenny Clarke as George Randall, Patrick Wenk-Wolff as Colin Raimes and Richard Benjamin as Milton Kornboll.

The series is produced by Twentieth Century Fox Television and ABC Studios. Josh Applebaum, Andre Nemec, Scott Rosenberg, Jane Featherstone, Stephen Garrett and David E. Kelley are the executive producers. The pilot episode of “Life on Mars” was executive-produced by David E. Kelley, Tommy Schlamme, Bob Breech, Jane Featherstone and Stephen Garrett, and was produced by David E. Kelley Productions in association with 20th Century Fox Television.

ALTERNATIVE

“OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS”

“Opportunity Knocks” is a new show that breaks the mold of typical game and reality shows. We will be showing up on America’s doorstep and testing how well they know their family. Our mobile team will arrive at “Anywhere, America” in a semi-truck that is full of flat screen TVs, new furniture and big cash prizes that the family can win right there. We will take the action of a game show directly into our contestants’ homes, setting up shop in a family’s front lawn. The instant our host, JD Roth, knocks on the front door, the game will begin. Hollywood will invade a suburban neighborhood, and each week one lucky family will play the game of a lifetime in front of all their friends and neighbors.

The host poses trivia questions to family members based directly on their lives, each other and articles found in and around their home. If they’re able to prove they know their family inside and out, they’ll win the prizes of their dreams.

Executive producers for “Opportunity Knocks” are Ashton Kutcher, Jason Goldberg, Karey Burke, J.D. Roth and Todd A. Nelson. “Opportunity Knocks” is produced by Katalyst Films and 3 Ball Productions.

RETURNING FALL SERIES

DRAMA

“BOSTON LEGAL”

Led by an Emmy Award-winning cast, “Boston Legal” returns for a fifth season to tell the professional and personal stories of a group of brilliant but often emotionally-challenged attorneys. Fast-paced and wildly comedic, the series confronts social and moral issues, while its characters continually stretch the boundaries of the law.

“Boston Legal” stars James Spader as Alan Shore, John Larroquette as Carl Sack, Christian Clemenson as Jerry Espenson, Gary Anthony Williams as Clarence/Clarice Bell, Tara Summers as Katie Lloyd, Saffron Burrows as Lorraine Weller, Taraji P. Henson as Whitney Rome, with Candice Bergen as Shirley Schmidt and William Shatner as Denny Crane.

“Boston Legal” was created by David E. Kelley. Kelley and Bill D’Elia are executive producers. The series, which premiered October 3, 2004, is produced by David E. Kelley Productions in association with Twentieth Century Fox Television.

“BROTHERS & SISTERS”

“Brothers & Sisters” continues to follow the California-based Walker family through the complicated maze of American life today. The compelling one-hour drama series is about a collection of five enmeshed and somewhat damaged adult siblings and their strong but passionately devoted mother, Nora Holden (Oscar and Emmy Award winner Sally Field).

The Walkers’ lives have not been without challenge; romance, parenting, divorce, infidelity, addiction, war and even death have pushed each of them to the limit, but they continue to work toward living their lives as individuals, while loving each other unconditionally and trying to maintain some semblance of normalcy after the loss of their larger-than-life family patriarch, William Walker.

“Brothers & Sisters” stars Dave Annable as Justin Walker, Maxwell Perry Cotton as Cooper Whedon, Kerris Lilla Dorsey as Paige, Sally Field as Nora Holden, Calista Flockhart as Kitty Walker, Balthazar Getty as Thomas Walker, Rachel Griffiths as Sarah Whedon, Rob Lowe as Senator Robert McCallister, Sarah Jane Morris as Julia Walker, Matthew Rhys as Kevin Walker, Ron Rifkin as Saul Holden, Emily VanCamp as Rebecca Harper and Patricia Wettig as Holly Harper.

The series is executive-produced by Ken Olin (“Alias,” “thirtysomething”), Greg Berlanti (“Dirty Sexy Money,” “Everwood”), Monica Owusu-Breen (“Lost,” “Alias”) and Alison Schapker (“Lost,” “Alias”). It’s produced by ABC Studios.

“DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES”

A primetime soap with a contemporary take on the “happily ever after,” “Desperate Housewives” takes a darkly comedic look at suburbia, where the secret lives of housewives aren’t always what they seem.

“Desperate Housewives” stars Teri Hatcher as Susan Mayer, Felicity Huffman as Lynette Scavo, Marcia Cross as Bree Van De Kamp, Eva Longoria Parker as Gabrielle Solis, Nicollette Sheridan as Edie Britt, Brenda Strong as Mary Alice Young, James Denton as Mike Delfino, Doug Savant as Tom Scavo, Ricardo Antonio Chavira as Carlos Solis, Andrea Bowen as Julie Mayer, Shawn Pyfrom as Andrew Van De Kamp, Joy Lauren as Danielle Van De Kamp, Rachel Fox as Kayla Huntington, Dana Delany as Katherine Mayfair, Lyndsy Fonseca as Dylan Mayfair, Zane Huett as Parker Scavo and Brent and Shane Kinsman as Porter and Preston Scavo.

Marc Cherry is executive producer and creator. Sabrina Wind, George Perkins, Larry Shaw and David Grossman are executive producers. “Desperate Housewives” is produced by ABC Studios and is the winner of both the 2005 & 2006 Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series Musical or Comedy.

“DIRTY SEXY MONEY”

Power, privilege and family money are a volatile cocktail. Living proof of this are the Darlings of New York City, so absurdly wealthy, they put the “upper” in Upper East Side. This preeminent family are always getting mixed up with the wrong people and finding themselves in the middle of bad situations. It’ll take a miracle to take care of the legal and sometimes illegal needs of the Darlings. That miracle comes in the form of Nick George.

“Dirty Sexy Money” stars Peter Krause as Nick George, Donald Sutherland as Tripp Darling, William Baldwin as Patrick Darling, Natalie Zea as Karen Darling, Glenn Fitzgerald as Rev. Brian Darling, Seth Gabel as Jeremy Darling, Zoe McLellan as Lisa George, with Blair Underwood as Simon Elder, and Jill Clayburgh as Letitia Darling and Lucy Liu as Nola Lyons.

“Dirty Sexy Money” was created by Emmy-nominated Craig Wright (“Brothers & Sisters,” “Lost,” “Six Feet Under”). Wright, Greg Berlanti (“Brothers & Sisters,” “Everwood”), Oscar and Golden Globe-nominated Matthew Gross (“Day Break,” “Across the Universe”), Bryan Singer (“House,” “Superman Returns,” “The Usual Suspects”) and Daniel Cerone (“Dexter”) are executive producers. The series is produced by ABC Studios.

“ELI STONE”

Eli Stone is a partnership-track associate lawyer with a beautiful fiance and a forgotten dream to change the world, when one day a vision of George Michael singing his song “Faith” leads him to a case defending the rights of a college sweetheart and her son. Propelled on a journey of self-discovery and guided by more mysterious visions, Eli is either suffering from delusions associated with a brain aneurysmor receiving a call from God to become a modern-day prophet.

“Eli Stone” stars Jonny Lee Miller as Eli Stone, Victor Garber as Jordan Wethersby, Natasha Henstridge as Taylor Wethersby, Loretta Devine as Patti, Sam Jaeger as Matt Dowd, James Saito as Dr. Chen, Matt Letscher as Nathan Stone and Julie Gonzalo as Maggie Dekker.

Greg Berlanti (“Brothers & Sisters,” “Dirty Sexy Money,” “Everwood”) and Marc Guggenheim (“Brothers & Sisters,” “Law & Order,” “The Practice”) are co-creators and executive producers. Chris Misiano (“The West Wing”) also serves as executive producer and director. The series is produced by ABC Studios.

“GREY’S ANATOMY”

“Grey’s Anatomy” is the recipient of the 2007 Golden Globe Award for Best Drama Television Series and multiple Emmy nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series for the past two years.

The doctors of Seattle Grace Hospital deal with life-or-death consequences on a daily basis it’s in one another that they find comfort, friendship and, at times, more than friendship. Together they’re discovering that neither medicine nor relationships can be defined in black and white. Real life only comes in shades of grey.

“Grey’s Anatomy” stars Ellen Pompeo as Meredith Grey, Patrick Dempsey as Derek Shepherd, Sandra Oh as Cristina Yang, Katherine Heigl as Isobel “Izzie” Stevens, Justin Chambers as Alex Karev, T.R. Knight as George O’Malley, Chandra Wilson as Miranda Bailey, James Pickens, Jr. as Richard Webber, Sara Ramirez as Callie Torres, Eric Dane as Mark Sloan, Chyler Leigh as Lexie Grey and Brooke Smith as Erica Hahn.

“Grey’s Anatomy” was created and is executive-produced by Shonda Rhimes (“Introducing Dorothy Dandridge”). Betsy Beers (“Casanova”), Mark Gordon (“Saving Private Ryan”), Krista Vernoff (“Law & Order”), Rob Corn (“Chicago Hope”) and Mark Wilding (“Jake: 2.0”) are executive producers. “Grey’s Anatomy” is an ABC Studios production.

“PRIVATE PRACTICE”

Having left behind Seattle Grace Hospital for Los Angeles and a new life full of promise, Addison Montgomery has joined the medical team at Oceanside Wellness Center, where the doctors are dedicated pros; it’s their private lives that need a little practice.

“Private Practice” stars Kate Walsh as Dr. Addison Forbes Montgomery, Tim Daly as Dr. Pete Wilder, Audra McDonald as Dr. Naomi Bennett, Paul Adelstein as Dr. Cooper Freedman, KaDee Strickland as Dr. Charlotte King, Chris Lowell as William Dell Parker, with Taye Diggs as Dr. Sam Bennett and Amy Brenneman as Dr. Violet Turner.

“Private Practice” was created and is executive-produced by Shonda Rhimes (“Grey’s Anatomy,” “Introducing Dorothy Dandridge”). Betsy Beers (“Grey’s Anatomy,” “Casanova”), Mark Gordon (“The Hoax,” “Saving Private Ryan”), Mark Tinker (“St. Elsewhere,” “NYPD Blue”), Robert Rovner and Jon Cowan are executive producers. “Private Practice” is an ABC Studios production.

“PUSHING DAISIES”

From Bryan Fuller (“Heroes,” “Wonderfalls”) and Barry Sonnenfeld (“Men in Black”) comes a series with an unprecedented blend of romance, fantasy and mystery, “Pushing Daisies,” a forensic fairytale about Ned, a young man with a very special gift. As a young boy Ned discovers that he can return the dead briefly back to life with just one touch. But his random gift isn’t without deadly consequences as he soon finds out. In its first season, this critically-acclaimed series received three Golden Globe nominations.

Golden Globe nominee Lee Pace (“The Good Shepherd,” “Soldier’s Girl”), Golden Globe nominee Anna Friel ( the upcoming “Land of the Lost,” “Rogue Trader”), Chi McBride (“The Nine,” “Boston Public”), Tony nominee Ellen Greene (“Little Shop of Horrors”), Emmy and Tony winner Swoosie Kurtz (“Huff,” “Sisters”) and Tony winner Kristin Chenoweth (“The West Wing”) star in the visually stunning series from the Jinks/Cohen Company, in association with Warner Bros. Television. Tony winner Jim Dale, reader of the “Harry Potter” series of audio books, is the narrator.

In addition to Fuller and Sonnenfeld, Dan Jinks & Bruce Cohen (Academy Award winning producers of “American Beauty”) and Peter Ocko serve as executive producers.

“UGLY BETTY”

In the superficial world of high fashion, image is everything. Styles come and go, and the only constants are the super thin beauties who wear them. How can an ordinary girl from Queens possibly fit in?

If you took a moment to get to know Betty Suarez, you’d see how sweet, intelligent and hard-working she is (if a bit fashion-challenged). When publishing mogul Bradford Meade handed the reigns of Mode, the bible of the fashion industry, over to this son, Daniel, he specifically hired Betty as his son’s new assistant mostly because she was the only woman Daniel wouldn’t sleep with. Both outsiders in their own way, Daniel and Betty form an unlikely team, each helping the other navigate the choppy waters of NYC’s fashion scene.

“Ugly Betty” stars America Ferrera as Betty Suarez, Eric Mabius as Daniel Meade, Tony Plana as Ignacio, Ana Ortiz as Hilda, Ashley Jensen as Christina, Becki Newton as Amanda, Mark Indelicato as Justin, Michael Urie as Marc, Judith Light as Claire Meade, Christopher Gorham as Henry, Rebecca Romijn as Alexis and Vanessa Williams as Wilhelmina Slater. Freddy Rodriguez is a recurring guest star as Gio. Lindsay Lohan will appear in a five-episode arc as Kimberly.

Based on “Yo Soy Betty La Fea,” the groundbreaking Colombian telenovela that became an international phenomenon, “Ugly Betty” is from ABC Studios. This past two seasons the series has been awarded three Emmy Awards, two GLAAD Awards, as well as Golden Globe, Peabody, DGA, NAACP, ALMA, CDG and Imagen Awards. Academy Award-nominee and Emmy Award winner Salma Hayek is executive producer, along with Jose Tamez (“The Maldonado Miracle”), Silvio Horta (“Urban Legend”) and Joel Fields (“Dirt”).

COMEDY

“SAMANTHA WHO?”

What if you had the chance to start over, to do it all again? For Samantha Newly (Christina Applegate), this fantasy becomes a reality after a hit-and-run accident leaves her in an eight-day coma. When she awakens in the hospital, she is surrounded by family and friends. The only problem is that she has no idea who they are or who she is. In medical terms, Sam has retrograde amnesia, which allows her to fully function in the world but leaves her with no personal memories. Most people would deem this disorder a curse. But Sam has come to call it a miracle.

“Samantha Who?” won the People’s Choice Award for Favorite New TV Comedy, and Applegate was nominated for a Golden Globe and SAG Award for her role.

“Samantha Who?” stars Christina Applegate as Samantha, Jennifer Esposito as Andrea, Kevin Dunn as Howard, Melissa McCarthy as Dena, Tim Russ as Frank, with Barry Watson as Todd and Jean Smart as Regina.

“Samantha Who?” was created by Cecelia Ahern and Donald Todd. Todd and Peter Traugott serve as executive producers. “Samantha Who?,” which is filmed in Los Angeles, is from ABC Studios.

ALTERNATIVE

“AMERICA’S FUNNIEST HOME VIDEOS”

Currently in its 18th season, and the longest-running primetime show in ABC history, “America’s Funniest Home Videos” features adults, children, pets and even inanimate objects at their spontaneous best. Tom Bergeron is the host. In its 18 seasons to date, “America’s Funniest Home Videos” has given away over $10 million in prize money and evaluated more than half a million videotapes from home viewers.

Vin Di Bona is executive producer, with Todd Thicke and Michele Nasraway serving as co-executive producers. “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” which premiered on January 14, 1990, is from Vin Di Bona Productions.

“DANCING WITH THE STARS”

Hosted by Tom Bergeron (“America’s Funniest Home Videos”) and Samantha Harris (“E! Entertainment”), celebrities perform choreographed dance routines which are judged by renowned Ballroom judge Len Goodman and dancer/choreographers Bruno Tonioli and Carrie Ann Inaba.

“Dancing with the Stars” is the U.S. version of the international smash hit series, “Strictly Come Dancing.” ABC’s version is produced in America by BBC Productions. Conrad Green serves as executive producer.

“EXTREME MAKEOVER: HOME EDITION”

Put together one very run-down house, a deserving family, several opinionated designers, seven days and what do you get? The answer is “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.” The show has won two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Reality Program, as well as the People’s Choice Award for Favorite Reality Show/Makeover and the Family Television Award for Best Alternative/Reality Program.

Beginning this season, “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” began featuring green elements on every episode with eco-friendly, low energy and recyclable sources being incorporated into the builds. Concluding the show’s two-year, 50-state tour will be a two-hour Season Finale on May 18 featuring three homes for a family (all on the same lot) and a church in Louisiana. In a first-ever effort to put together a coalition of past builders from all over the country, the show has called on the Building Industry to join forces and help with what might be the toughest challenge yet. In addition, the popular Australian vocal group, The Ten Tenors, will pay musical tribute to the builders at the church reveal, performing an emotionally charged version of “Here’s to the Heroes,” the title track to their most recent album.

The design team includes team leader Ty Pennington, with designers Paul DiMeo, Paige Hemmis, Michael Moloney, Ed Sanders, Tracy Hutson, Tanya McQueen, Eduardo Xol, John Littlefield, Rib Hillis and Didiayer. “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” is produced by Endemol USA, a division of Endemol Holding. David Goldberg is President of Endemol USA. The new season will be executive-produced by Anthony Dominici. The series premiered December 3, 2003, on the ABC Television Network.

“SUPERNANNY”

Jo Frost criss-crosses America taking on some of its toughest parenting challenges. Hailed by the New York Times as “fascinating” and “required viewing,” praised by Oprah Winfrey, David Letterman and Kelly Ripa, acclaimed by such publications as Newsweek, Hollywood Reporter and The New Yorker, and lauded by parents and nannies across America, “Supernanny” is a hit. Jo Frost, as Supernanny, can tame the wildest toddler, soothe the most savage six-year-old and get even the most difficult child to overcome problems with behavior, sleep, mealtime, potty training and other challenges that have vexed parents around the world for centuries. After just three episodes of the show aired in the U.K. in summer 2004, Jo Frost became Britain’s hottest new TV star and a godsend to desperate parents who were dazzled by her amazing results with unruly children. She debuted in America in early 2005 and captivated Americans as well with her practical, no-nonsense style, honed over 20 years of nannying. “Supernanny” is now an international phenomenon; it airs in 58 territories, almost all of them with Frost as Supernanny. The series was nominated for a People’s Choice Award, and fans loved her first two books, Supernanny: How to Get the Best from Your Children — a national bestseller — and Ask Supernanny. Her new book, Jo Frost’s Confident Baby Care: What You Need to Know for the First Year from America’s Most Trusted Nanny, was published in May 2008.

Nick Powell is the creator and executive producer of both the American and British versions of the show. Nick Emmerson and Holly Wofford are executive producers of the American version. “Supernanny” is produced by Ricochet, Ltd.

“WIFE SWAP”

“Wife Swap,” the critically-acclaimed unscripted reality show that takes us into the intimate heart of the American family home, revealing the extraordinarily different ways families live their lives, is currently airing its fourth season.

Each week from across the country, two families with very different values are chosen to take part in a two-week long challenge. The wives from these two families exchange husbands, children and lives (but not bedrooms) to discover just what it’s like to live another woman’s life. It’s a mind-blowing experiment that often ends up changing their lives forever.

In the first week of the swap, the wives move in with their new family and adopt their very different lifestyle. They agree to follow a manual written by the departing wife that sets out the rules of their new household — how they parent, shop, do the housework, manage their budgets and their social life. But then, in the second week, everything changes. The new wives take charge. They introduce their own set of rules and get to run the new household their way. It’s a radical shock to both families. The results are explosive, enlightening and often very funny. This is a show about the things that really matter to families across America.

NEW MIDSEASON SERIES

COMEDY

“THE GOODE FAMILY”

A new animated series from Mike Judge, creator of “King of the Hill.” “The Goode Family” is obsessed with doing the “right” thing, whether it’s environmentally, politically or socially. Unfortunately their efforts often have unintended comic consequences.

“The Goode Family” is voiced by Mike Judge as Gerald, Nancy Carell as Helen, Dave Herman as Ubuntu and Abby Elliot as Bliss.

Executive producers for “The Goode Family” are Mike Judge, David Krinsky, John Altschuler, Michael Rotenberg and Tom Lassally. The series is produced by MRC and 3 Arts Entertainment.

“SCRUBS”

“Scrubs” focuses on the strange experiences of Dr. John Dorian, or “J.D.,” a medical resident, as he continues on his healing career in a surreal hospital, crammed full of unpredictable staffers and patients — where humor and tragedy can collide at any time.

“Scrubs” received two consecutive Emmy nominations for Outstanding Comedy Series in 2005 and 2006. In its debut year, “Scrubs” was nominated for two Emmy Awards and a People’s Choice Award. It has received a total of 10 Emmy nominations, and in 2005 the series won the Emmy for Outstanding Multi-Camera Picture Editing. In 2004 “Scrubs” was honored with a prestigious Humanitas Prize. Beginning that same year, the series received three consecutive Producers Guild Award nominations from 2004-2006.

“Scrubs” stars Zach Braff as Dr. John “J.D.” Dorian, Donald Faison as Chris Turk, Sarah Chalke as Elliot Reid, Judy Reyes as Carla Espinosa, John C. McGinley as Dr. Perry Cox, Ken Jenkins as Dr. Bob Kelso and Neil Flynn as The Janitor.

“Scrubs” executive producer and creator is Bill Lawrence. The series is produced by ABC Studios.

ALTERNATIVE

“UNTITLED ASHTON KUTCHER/TYRA BANKS PROJECT”

A beauty pageant unlike any you’ve ever seen, from executive producers Ashton Kutcher and Tyra Banks.

OTHER RETURNING SERIES

DRAMA

“LOST”

Awarded the 2005 Emmy and 2006 Golden Globe for Best Drama Series, “Lost’s” action-packed mystery and adventure continues to bring out the very best and very worst in the people who are lost.

“Lost” stars Naveen Andrews as Sayid, Henry Ian Cusick as Desmond, Emilie de Ravin as Claire, Michael Emerson as Ben, Matthew Fox as Jack, Jorge Garcia as Hurley, Josh Holloway as Sawyer, Daniel Dae Kim as Jin, Yunjin Kim as Sun, Evangeline Lilly as Kate, Elizabeth Mitchell as Juliet, Terry O’Quinn as Locke and Harold Perrineau as Michael.

“Lost” was created by Jeffrey Lieber and J.J. Abrams & Damon Lindelof. Abrams, Lindelof, Bryan Burk, Jack Bender and Carlton Cuse serve as executive producers. “Lost,” which is filmed entirely on location in Hawaii and premiered on September 22, 2004, is from ABC Studios.

COMEDY

“ACCORDING TO JIM”

“According to Jim” returns for its eighth successful season as the macho “Everyman” who adores his family.

Jim (Jim Belushi) has it all: a gorgeous wife, Cheryl (Courtney Thorne-Smith), whom he challenges with his stubborn manliness but contagious charm; three precocious kids, Ruby (Taylor Atelian), Gracie (Billi Bruno) and Kyle (Conner Rayburn); and his brother-in-law, Andy (Larry Joe Campbell), his best friend, business partner and “partner in crime.”

“According to Jim” stars Jim Belushi as Jim, Courtney Thorne-Smith as Cheryl, Larry Joe Campbell as Andy, Taylor Atelian as Ruby, Billi Bruno as Gracie and Conner Rayburn as Kyle.

Executive producers are Jim Belushi, Warren Bell, Suzanne Bukinik, Jonathan Stark, Marc Gurvitz, John D. Beck, Ron Hart, John Peaslee and Judd Pillot. “According to Jim” is from ABC Studios.

ALTERNATIVE

“THE BACHELOR”

ABC’s “The Bachelor” is the original primetime romance reality series that offers one lucky man and 25 lucky women the unique opportunity to find true love.

The new Bachelor will get to know 25 women via a series of social gatherings and exotic, romantic dates some in groups, some individually. He will introduce some of the women to his family, and will visit their hometowns for a slice of their lives in an effort to determine the woman with whom he is most compatible.

The series follows a gradual process of elimination each week, until the Bachelor ultimately decides on the one woman who has captured his heart. However, at any point along the way, should a woman decide that she is no longer interested in him, she may reject his invitation to continue dating. At the end of the journey, this gentleman will quite possibly have found true love. But the big question is: After all of this, if he pops the question, will she accept?

Hosted by Chris Harrison, “The Bachelor” is a production of Next Entertainment in association with Warner Horizon Television. Mike Fleiss, David Bohnert and Martin Hilton are the executive producers.

ABC NEWS

“PRIMETIME: WHAT WOULD YOU DO?”

Using hidden cameras, “Primetime: What Would You Do?” sets up everyday scenarios and then captures people’s reactions. Whether people are compelled to act or mind their own business, John Quiones reports on their split-second and often surprising decision-making process.

People often talk about how they think they would act in a difficult situation, but this series looks at how they actually do in the face of everyday dilemmas that test their character and values. According to the Columbia Journalism Review essay, “Primetime: What Would You Do?” is “the flip side of reality TVrather than show how people act in manufactured situations when they know they’re being watched, they show us how people act when they don’t.”

David Sloan is the executive producer of “Primetime: What Would You Do?.” Robert Lange is the senior producer.

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This post was written by Shawna on May 13, 2008

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