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ABC to launch Off the Map on Wednesdays come January

Off the Map

Shonda Rhimes, creator of ABC hits Private Practice and Grey’s Anatomy, may have another hit at ABC come January 12th. She is producing along with creator Jenna Bans, on Off the Map, which will premiere Wednesday, January 12th at 10/9c, according to a release by the network this afternoon

The series stars the young talent of Caroline Dhavernas (Wonderfalls), Rachelle Lefevre (Twilight), Mamie Gummer (The Good Wife), and Zach Gilford (Friday Night Lights), among others, as young doctors that go to work on a remote tropical location, to find themselves, and discover some unique medical situations.

Off the Map was originally scheduled to take over for Brothers and Sisters on Sundays, but when the 5th-year drama hit a ratings boost this year and got an additional pickup things changed. New ABC president Paul Lee is said to be high on the project shooting in Hawaii, granting Off the Map a full 13 episode pickup, opposed to the seven episodes it originally got.

It is unclear at the time whether this will be the permanent location for the series on ABC’s midseason schedule that will include Matthew Perry-led Mr. Sunshine, new comedy Happy Endings, and a new drama starring Dana Delany entitled Body of Proof, expect a full release tomorrow.

The mini-release by ABC is below on the show…. (more…)

TCA Summer Press Tour Roundup: NBC

The cast of Undercovers talk to critics

NBC, oh NBC, what a crazy up and down year it has been for you and to present to a bunch of critics that have not been so kind over the last was not that easy. Alas, NBC is looking in pretty positive shape coming this fall with new shows, good promotion, and strong acting and buzz. Here are the highlights from their day at the Television Critics Association Press Tour:

  • The network decided to change some of its fall premiere dates to better launch new and returning shows. Parenthood will premiere a week early September 14th at 10/9c, after America’s Got Talent, while new drama Outlaw with Jimmy Smits will preview after the Talent finale the next day at 10/9c. It will then settle into its regular slot, Fridays at 10/9c on the 17th. The Apprentice will get a two-hour launch on the 16th now, while Law and Order: LA will get pushed to September 29th.
  • Speaking of LOLA, lots of news as production starts Monday for the franchise spinoff. The cast is now locked with Terrence Howard napping a DDA role which will rotate with Alfred Molina, Regina Hall will play the ADA Eva Price, and Wanda De Jesus plays Lieutenant Arleen Gonzales. Also, according to TV Guide, Mariska Hargitay may stop by for the premiere from SVU to give the show synergy with its lead-in.
  • 30 Rock will perform a LIVE episode on the 14th of October for both coasts. Live episode are especially exciting for the unknown factor, but veterans Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin are doing it from the SNL stage so its nothing new for them. Also in comedies, Drew Carey and Rob Corddry will pop up on Community, and Kathy Bates and Amy Ryan will return to The Office. Ryan stay will last most of the season (Hell yes!!).
  • Other Office gossip was presented to NBC President Angela Bromstad who said that the news that Steve Carrell is leaving the show in May was not a surprise and that they have a plan which will be a mystery throughout the year. Someone will replace him.
  • Now for some quick takes about the new and returning shows: Rob Lowe is now a series regular on Parks and Recreation, The Event producers want you to not feel cheated and repeatedly say it’s not Lost, Chase got Eddie Cibrian for multiple episodes, Outlaw is getting retooled a lot, the Undercoversleads race is a pretty big step for TV and people should care, and Outsourced is still not funny. Oops.

To read more in depth and full reports check out the following sites: The Futon CriticHollywood ReporterAusiello Files, and Variety.

TCA Summer Press Tour Roundup: CBS Starts It Off

CBS's The Talk

It’s the end of July, Comic-Con is over, and the TV world turns its attention fully into the start of production on the fall season and the networks present their fall slates again more formally at the Television Critics Associations Press Tour. The tour began today with CBS and continues with CW, Showtime, NBC, ABC, FOX in the coming days followed by a variety of cable shows. I scoured the web for the best highlights of today’s panels and check it out below….

  • Nina Tassler, CBS President, started the day off by commenting on the big news of the week that ABC executive Steve McPherson resigned yesterday. She said, “Damn it, he got out of doing press tour,” always good to start on a fun note.
  • CBS has five new series in the fall, Hawaii 5-0 airs on Monday and CBS wanted to make it clear it was not a remake, more of the new cool term, “re-imagaining.” The pilot will shine a light on island life and not be fully be procedural based.
  • The two new comedies, S&%* My Dad Says and Mike & Molly, received lukewarm feelings from critics, while the former’s star William Shatner is upset they aren’t using the real expletive in the title.
  • CBS is also premiering a new daytime talk show in October with the title, “The Talk.” The show centers around moms and the creator Sara Gilbert (Rosanne) recruited Julie Chen, Leah Remini, Holly Robinson Peete, Sharon Osbourne, and Marissa Jaret Winokur to talk about all the subjects they want too. Chen seems to be all over the net and will step down as a day-to-day duties at The Early Show.
  • Two surprising positives from the network seem to be the new Friday drama Blue Bloods about a family of New York Cops, with its star Tom Selleck and Donnie Wahlberg really selling the idea that it’s really about the family not the crime. Also The Defenders, where as much as Jim Belushi wants to shake off the hatred toward According to Jim, he just can’t with the critics, but his show is sure garnering positives.
  • Finally, Nina Tassler has no decision on Flashpoint‘s return next summer as nothing has been decided.

To read more in depth and full reports check out the following sites: The Futon Critic, Hollywood Reporter, Ausiello Files, and Variety.

Upfront Frenzy: ABC Schedule Released!

Hope you are having a great day or had but I am super busy but wanted to share with you the ABC schedule for next year and my two cents.

By far, not the best schedule that they have had but really like the 8 o’clock hour on Tuesdays and Thursdays as well as the placement of Detriot 1-8-7. ABC went safe this year and interested to see where buzzed comedies Mr. Sunshine and Happy Endings end up. The problems, wasting Body of Proof on Friday and The Whole Truth on Wednesday. Take a look below and find trailers on ABC.com.

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Upfront Frenzy: FOX’s 2010-11 Plans!

Cast of FOX's Lonestar

The week is starting and so are the Upfront presentations to advertisers in New York City, it is FOX turn today (along with NBC) and this morning they released their new schedule for the coming season.

The schedule itself is very strong which includes new dramas after House, new comedies after Glee on Tuesdays, a solid Thursday and come 2011, shortened Idol, the epic Terra Nova, and more.

The one thing I do not care for however is the decision to air Glee after the Super Bowl, I like Glee but I want something new and interesting and it is a little early to make that choice I think.

Go below for the full release and check back later after the presentation for clips… (more…)

Upfront Frenzy: NBC’s Fall Schedule revealed!

In advanced of the shared Upfront day with FOX, NBC announced their new fall schedule early via call. The fall schedule (first year in awhile NBC did not do a midseason one) consists of no new comedy night which was suspected, a drama Monday and Wednesday, and no Parks and Recreation in the fall.

I like the schedule as a whole as it does give NBC many great midseason dramas/comedies that can launch later and give them a strong spring. The week does not flow per-say but the night’s certainly do by keeping a nice theme throughout. Take a look at the schedule after the jump and go visit the NBC site for clips from all the new shows. Note: Expect full promos to be released tomorrow with more footage.

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The Calm Before the Storm: Friday’s Upfront News

The schedules are coming, they are coming…

David Lyons in "The Cape"

Before the unveils of the plans, the networks are busy greenlighting series to order today and below is the latest. (Note: this post will be updated throughout the day with new news.)

UPDATED: ABC has picked up two more dramas to its new slate for next year. Dana Delany will officially be moving off of Wisteria Lane to be a medical examiner in Body of Proof. The series revolves around Megan Hunt, who is a cop stuck in the morgue. Also in the series, Jeri Ryan and Sonja Sohn. Second pickup this afternoon is the Shonda Rhimes produced, Jenna Bans written Off the Map. Map is a medical drama set in the tropics about three doctors moving to a remote practice for a change in their lives. Wonderfall‘s Caroline Dhavernas and Mammie Gummer as two of the doctors. More ABC pickups are expected to be revealed soon.

NBC this morning confirmed the demise of one of the longest series in television history, Law & Order. The Dick Wolf stable ran for 20 years which ties the record set by Gunsmoke. The series will wrap on May 24th, but on the flip side is that NBC renewed its most successful spinoff, Special Victims Unit, while creating a new one, LOLA (aka Law & Order: Los Angeles). LOLA will debut in the fall and is ran by Brotherhood creator Blake Masters. No casting has been announced yet.

Friends with Benefits

NBC then went on to order 4 more new series, including one comedy and three dramas. Friends with Benefits, a single-cam comedy from the writers of (500) Days of Summer, and stars Fran Kranz, Ryan Hansen, Jessica Lucas, and Danneel Harris among others. The series is a more modern take on Friends, and revolves around pals trying to navigate of dating world and it is not easy for them. The script was fresh and fun and will be a nice pairing to the already picked-up Perfect Couples.

Kathy Bates in "Harry's Law"

The Cape, a superhero drama from Tom Wheeler, stars the likes of Summer Glau and David Lyons. Lyons plays a man Vince who was wrongly accused of something and is forced to leave his family and become a masked superhero in a Gotham-esque town full of them. It is a certainly originally concept and I applauded the script and NBC decision to pick it up, certainly for midseason due to the effects.

The last two dramas of NBC pickups today both come from familiar faces. Conan O’Brian (still in business with NBC) produces Outlaw (formally Garza) and it is a starring vehicle for Jimmy Smits as a Supreme Court judge that comes to a revelation of the system, quits, and change his life. Finally, David E. Kelly is no stranger to law dramas (Boston Legal, Ally McBeal) and he is at it again with NBC producing Harry’s Law (fka Kindreds). The drama was originally written in a lighthearted script centering around a man, but when they saw the wonderful Kathy Bates that changed. Bates took the lead and the role changed to a woman who is a troubled lawyer who meets some interesting folks that changes her direction. The show also stars the charming Brittany Snow as her secretary.

Below is NBC official release…. (more…)

Thursday’s Upfront Frenzy: The Renewals, Pickups, and Cancellations

Thursday was a pretty quiet day in terms of upfront news as it is fast approaching. That statement worked until tonight when the craziness started!

Matthew Perry in Mr. Sunshine

It all started with the report by Deadline.com that the staple Law & Order was cancelled by NBC because of a dispute with creator Dick Wolf. That was quickly called out too soon as reports of troubles are true, but negotiations are still ongoing but unlikely to change by Monday. NBC reversely picked up the David E. Kelly/Kathy Bates starring vehicle Kindreds for midseason and according to THR, the intelligent Garza legal pilot which is a chance for Jimmy Smits to shine. But the best news from NBC, CHUCK IS RENEWED. Enough said. (The other bubble show Heroes, may get a limited pickup to finish the series.)

ABC took to the waves by announcing six new pickups of series following the announcement of the first drama No Ordinary Family.

First up the new comedies, the fantastically written by star Matthew Perry and pals pilot Mr. Sunshine and starring Allison Janney was one of the three laffers. Mr. Sunshine focuses on a sports center manager (Perry) and his friends, think of it as the male-led Cougar Town). Second is Happy Endings, starring Elisha Cuthbert and Eliza Coupe, and centers around an almost married couple and their eclectic friends. I have read the script by David Caspe flows nicely and is a good adult sitcom. The last official pickup is the only multi-cam by the network, Better Together, which features Joanna Garcia and Jennifer Finnigan as sisters who are both in a relationship as well as their parents. Debra Messing’s ABC pilot Wright vs. Wrong is very close to a pickup as well.

The Cast of ABC's Detroit 1-8-7

The new dramas on ABC (more pickups to come tomorrow) include the Michael Imperioli fronted cop drama, Detroit 1-8-7, which had a solid script and a very nice cast including the underrated Aisha Hinds, and The Whole Truth which brings back Joely Richardson to the Jerry Bruckheimer drama, that focus on both sides of the law, with the other side shown by Rob Marrow. Joely is one of my favorite actresses and the script was a refreshing legal concept. The third drama pickup is My Generation (also called Generation Y), written tremendously by Noah Hawley (The Unusuals), focuses on a class of kids that were in a documentary in high school, and now are being looked at once again 10 years later. The class includes actors such as Mechad Brooks, Jamie King, and Kelli Garner.

In terms of current shows at ABC, a personal favorite V has been renewed for a second season, and now multiple sources including EW, are reporting that Better off Ted, Romantically Challenged, Scrubs, and FlashForward, are all cancelled.

CBS picked up their first freshman entry today, Mike and Molly. The pilot about a couple that meets at a meeting for “larger” people is from their favorite creator Chuck Lorre (The Big Bang Theory) and stars the wonderful women Melissa McCarthy and Swoosie Kurtz.

Lastly on the cable side, partner networks TBS and TNT, who are both doing presentations next week, picked up new series. TBS greenlit Glory Daze, which stars a crew of unknowns that play 80’s college students in Wisconsin. Finally in a pilot started at TBS, Franklin and Bash moved to TNT and Lynette Rice at EW is reporting has been okay-ed for series. The pilot about street smart lawyers stars Breckin Meyer and Mark-Paul Gosselaar.

Stay tuned throughout the night, tomorrow, and the weekend for the latest in advance of the Upfronts next week.

UPDATED Wednesday’s Massive Pilot Frenzy: FOX, ABC, and NBC See a Busy Day

Michael Chiklis in ABC's No Ordinary Family

Today was a busy day for me, and every time I checked my phone it seemed another pilot had been picked up to series and reported by Deadline.com and the awesome Nellie Andreeva.

With both NBC and FOX announcing first on Monday (NBC will do a online release of schedule Sunday night), they were busy ordering up series orders today in addition to ABC.

UPDATED: ABC has made the first pickup for the alphabet’s fall schedule with the highly touted No Ordinary Family, which stars Michael Chiklis, Julie Benz, Autumn Resser, and others, and centers around a family that aquires superpowers. The pilot script was fun and I think that is its goal. Good characters, the mom and dad both have interesting lives outside of the family which provides a good dynamic.

It comes from Greg Berlanti (Jack and Bobby) and Jon Feldman (Dirty Sexy Money). It is widely speculated among insiders that the family drama will get a 8/7c time-slot most likely on Sunday nights. ABC announces in New York on Tuesday.

The Cast of NBC's Perfect Couples

NBC to start ordered Perfect Couples, a single-camera comedy about three couples in different stages of relationships. The cast includes the best thing about FlashForward, Christine Woods, My Boys‘ Kyle Howard, 100 Questions‘ David Walton, nerd idol Oliva Munn, and more.

I have read the pilot script written by and it is a fun romp on the couples romantic comedy, and each couple interacts well as a group and by themselves. Expect Friends with Benefits written by the guys from (500) Days of Summer, Next, starring and written by Paul Reiser, and maybe even family comedy This Little Piggy to follow suit on the comedy side on NBC. On the dead side, comedy Beach Lane, which starred Matthew Broadrick, will not see the light of day.

Keri Russell and writer/star Will Arnett in FOX's Running Wilde

Over at FOX, they first handed renewals to both their bubble shows, freshman action drama Human Target, and sophomore Lie to Me, with 13 episode seasons. It was expect one or the other would be picked up for a new year.

On FOX’s new drama side, Ride-Along written by Shawn Ryan (The Shield) and starring Jason Clarke, Jennifer Beals, and Delroy Lindo, will get a spot on the schedule as well as the ambiguous Lone Star, about an oil guy in Texas with a double life. The pilot stars Jon Voight, Jimmy Wolk, and Adrienne Palicki, and both new drama scripts were excellent. The former was sharp, compelling, and used Chicago marvelously, while the latter was intelligent, and intriguing.

Over at the comedies, My Name is Earl creator Greg Garcia, got a new show with Keep Hope Alive, starring Martha Plimpton and Cloris Leachman, Traffic Light, a comedy from Israel featuring David Denman, among others, and finally Running Wilde from the Arrested Development creators and starring the amazing pair of Will Arnett and Keri Russell.

The last two comedies had fresh scripts, especially Wilde, which was full of humor and heart, while Hope did not get me the best of hope about its future (pun intended). FOX was expected to announce one more comedy in Most Likely to Succeed (now dead) as well as a blind series order to the dino-drama Terra Nova, by Monday, but do not expect Christian Slater or Martin Short as their pilots Breaking In and Tax Men will not be picked up.

Stay tuned for more…..

And NBC’s Fifth Pickup Goes To….Chase!

The Cast of NBC's new fall drama "Chase"

Monday afternoon brought NBC to their fifth series pickup with a pilot from Jerry Bruckheimer, Jennifer Johnson, and directed by “pilot whisperer” David Nutter called “Chase.”

Chase stars Kelli Giddish (Past Life), Jesse Metcalfe (Desperate Housewives), Cole Hauser (K-Ville), Amaury Nolasco (Prison Break), and Rose Rollins (The L Word), as members of a division of U.S. Marshalls tasked to apprehend danergous on the run criminals based in Texas.

Giddish plays the complicated Annie Frost that takes things personal, has had a troubled past, but that is what makes her such a great officer. Giddish was unfairly bashed in the not-so-great Past Life on FOX, but she is a wonderful actress that will no doubt be able to carry the series.

I have read the pilot script which was my favorite of the year because it present a familiar feel in a new dimension, the chracters seemed interesting and fleshed out to a degree, and the pacing and action was superb in the writing by Jennifer Johnson.

NBC has their upfront presentation Monday, with the full schedule to be announced Sunday which will feature the already picked up Love Bites, Outsourced, The Event, and Undercovers. Below is NBC’s official release….

NBC PICKS UP NEW DRAMA SERIES ‘CHASE,’ FROM JERRY BRUCKHEIMER, FOR 2010-11 SEASON

Drama Becomes NBC’s Fifth New Scripted Series Announced for New Season

UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. – May 10, 2010 – NBC has picked up its fifth scripted series pilot for the 2010-11 season in “Chase,” a new drama from Emmy Award-winning executive producer Jerry Bruckheimer (“CSI” franchise, “The Amazing Race,” “Pirates of the Caribbean” films) and executive producer Jennifer Johnson (“Cold Case”).

The announcement was made by Angela Bromstad, President, Primetime Entertainment, NBC and Universal Media Studios.

“Chase” joins previously announced “Undercovers,” “The Event,” “Love Bites,” and “Outsourced” as the fifth new scripted series currently announced for NBC’s new season with additional pickups yet to be announced.

“’Chase’ has all the undeniable elements of a thrill ride that you would expect from a Jerry Bruckheimer action series,” said Bromstad. “Equally important, it also features a great cast. Kelli Giddish is a breakout star as the lead.”

“Chase” is a fast-paced drama that drops viewers smack into the middle of a game of cat-and-mouse as a team of U.S. marshals hunts down America’s most dangerous fugitives. Kelli Giddish (“Past Life”) stars as U.S. Marshal Annie Frost, a cowboy boot-wearing deputy whose sharp mind and unique Texas upbringing help her track down the violent criminals on the run.

Cole Hauser (“K-Ville”), Amaury Nolasco (“Prison Break”), Rose Rollins (“The L Word”) and Jesse Metcalfe (“Desperate Housewives”) also star as members of Frost’s elite team.

“Chase” is produced by Bonanza Productions Inc., in association with Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Warner Bros. Television. Bruckheimer, Jonathan Littman (“CSI” franchise, “The Amazing Race,” “Cold Case”) and Johnson serve as executive producers, while KristieAnne Reed is co-executive producer. David Nutter (“The Mentalist,” “Without a Trace” “The X-Files”) directed and is executive producer of the pilot which was written by Johnson.