Tuesday, January 12, 2010

TCA Winter 2010 Press Tour: ABC; Rita Rocks Canceled By Lifetime; TV Land Picks-Up Series, Announces Cast For Sitcom Pilot

The final day for the broadcast networks at the TCA winter press tour is today and ABC gets to close things out. First up at 9am PT was a panel on LOST! On hand were stars Emilie de Ravin, Michael Emerson, Jorge Garcia, Josh Holloway, Daniel Dae Kim, Evangeline Lilly, and Terry O'Quinn, along with executive producers Damon Lindelof & Carlton Cuse. Among the items answered: Damon and Carlton announce that Cynthia Watros (Libby) and Harold Perrineau (Michael) are confirmed for this final season. Season 6 will be like Season 1. Don't know what that means, you'll have to watch and see. Holloway says the season 6 premiere felt like a finale. Good stuff! The final season begins Tuesday, Feb. 2 at 8/7 central with a three-hour event (clip show recap and two-hour premiere)! If you need to refresh yourself, ABC will air last season's season finale on Tuesday, Jan. 26 at 9/8 central!

After that, there was the Executive Session with Stephen McPherson (President of ABC Entertainment Group) at 10am PT. Among the items given were details on a The Bachelor/The Bachelorette spin-off titled The Bachelor Pad. It will launch after the season of The Bachelorette ends this summer and will reunite 20 former contestants from both series all living in a house at the same time. An all-star edition!
Comedy wise, ABC has given early pick-ups for the Comedy Wednesday comedies The Middle, Modern Family and Cougar Town for 2010-2011 season! All three are safe and will return next season and have been extended beyond 22 episodes for this season (likely 24 for all three this season)! As for Hank, he mentions the writing wasn't that good but he loves Kelsey. So Hank is officially canceled. ABC will air the last two episodes of the season of [scrubs][med school] on a special night of Wednesday on Wednesday, Jan. 27 and Wednesday, Feb. 3 at 8pm. Until then the series will air Tuesdays at 9pm (repeats at 8pm on Jan. 12 and 19) thru Jan. 26 at 8pm. Better off Ted still will have two episodes unaired after its Jan. 26 airing. Decision will be made after that whether or not both series will return next season, but ABC was disappointed by the numbers for both. McPherson loves Ugly Betty and wants to find the right slot for it. And hoping people know now about the move to Wednesdays. Alyssa Milano's sitcom Romantically Challenged could be a contender for Wednesdays at 8pm, but no premiere date yet.
As for other midseason stuff, V and FLASHFORWARD return in March, as we all know. FLASHFORWARD is not returning in January because ABC would have had a lot of repeats scheduled and the show doesn't repeat well. V returns Tuesday, March 30 at 10, while FLASHFORWARD returns Thursday, March 18 at 8 with a two-hour return. V was always planned to air in chapters, but chapter one should have been longer but production issues was the reason for only four episodes for the first chapter. He mentions Happy Town is serialized and it has a beginning, middle and end for this run. Still waiting on when to schedule it. ABC could order more Conveyor Belt of Love specials or as a series. Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution will air Fridays at 9pm starting March 26. The series is produced by Ryan Seacrest Productions and Fresh One Productions. In the series, Oliver heads to Huntington, West Virginia -- which has been called the unhealthiest city in America -- to start his new cooking initiative. He hopes to help get Huntington off that list and start a chain reaction of positive change across the country. Shark Tank will finish its season on Friday, Feb. 5 at 9, then ABC will take a three week break on Fridays (and Saturdays) with movies opposite the Winter Olympics. It is unclear what will air Fridays, March 5, 12, and 19 at 9pm still.
On all this late night fiasco, he said there are too many jokes to make on it. He also said, "We don't have any plans to change our late-night right now. I love Kimmel."
As for Dancing with the Stars, it will be back twice a year still and will have 11 contestants this season as last season had a bit too many he thought. The season ten premiere will be Monday, March 22 from 8-10pm and will air Mondays 8-10pm. The Results Show premieres Tuesday, March 30 at a new time of 8-9pm.
Read more about ABC's TCA Announcements via press releases, which includes a new book on Castle! Speaking of Castle, a special two-part Castle episode airing Sunday, March 21 and Monday, March 22 at 10pm with guest star Dana Delaney (Desperate Housewives)! No dates yet for Romantically Challenged, Happy Town or the return of Wife Swap. When it is announced, we will let you know, so stay with us!

After the executive session there will be panels for the upcoming midseason legal drama The Deep End at 11am PT. On hand for the panel are stars Matt Long, Billy Zane, Clancy Brown, Leah Pipes, Tina Majorino, Ben Lawson and Mehcad Brooks, along with executive producers David Hemingson & Jan Nash. The series premieres Thursday, Jan. 21 at 8/7 central on ABC!
Next up at 11:45am PT is a panel for upcoming midseason mystery drama Happy Town. In this session we have stars Geoff Stults, Sam Neill, Lauren German, Steven Weber, and Amy Acker along with executive producers Josh Applebaum, Andre Nemec, & Scott Rosenberg (from October Road & Life on Mars).
Lunch is next at 12:30pm PT, then at 2pm PT there will be a panel for ABC Comedy Wednesday Show Runner Panel. Questions will be answered by show runners Eileen Heisler & DeAnn Heline (The Middle), Steven Levitan (Modern Family and Bill Lawrence (Cougar Town/Scrubs).
At 3:30pm PT ABC Family takes over at the press tour and will have a panel on their original sitcom 10 Things I Hate About You. The rest of the tour will be ABC Daytime and SOAPnet driven with a panel for All My Children's 40th Anniversary and SOAPnet soap Being Erica.
Be sure to check out the great TVTango.com as they were there doing the best job covering the TCA press tour! Hats out to them!


Turning to regular news, Lifetime has canceled original sitcom Rita Rocks after just two seasons. The series starred Nicole Sullivan as Rita, a working mom who starts a garage band. The series also starred Tisha Campbell-Martin, Richard Ruccolo, Natalie Dreyfuss, Kelly Gould and Raviv Ullman. As of now, Lifetime still has original sitcom Sherri, which recently just completed its first season of 13 episodes. No decision has been made on a second season yet. Both shows didn't do so hot in the ratings this fall.

Meanwhile, TV Land has picked up an original series starring real-life Hollywood couple Lisa Rinna and Harry Hamlin. It will be a six-episode docu-soap entitled Harry Loves Lisa featuring pop culture sensation Lisa Rinna and her heartthrob husband, Harry Hamlin. The series will be executive produced by Jason Carbone and centers on the relationship between Rinna and Hamlin as they navigate together through the highs and lows as a devoted family living a hectic Hollywood lifestyle. Harry Loves Lisa brings to life the romantic notion that opposites attract as Lisa's playful spontaneity differs from Harry's more reserved demeanor. Audiences will watch as the two balance their differences in the midst of insane professional lives as working actors and entrepreneurs who are parenting two pre-teen daughters. One of Hollywood's most enduring‪ couples, the Hamlins' contradictory personalities make for amazing chemistry both on-screen and off. The TV Land PRIME original series is scheduled to air in Fall 2010 on TV Land.
In other TV Land news, we gave you details on the George Segal sitcom pilot, now they have announced casting for their other sitcom pilot. TV Land has tapped sitcom veterans Valerie Bertinelli (One Day at a Time), Jane Leeves (Frasier), Wendie Malick (Just Shoot Me!) and TV legend Betty White (The Golden Girls) to star in its comedy pilot Hot in Cleveland. Written by Frasier alum Suzanne Martin, Hot in Cleveland revolves around three eccentric forty-something best friends from L.A. (Bertinelli, Leeves, Malick) who wind up stuck in Cleveland and decide to stay there when they realize the locals consider them glamorous. Betty White plays a grumpy and opinionated lady who has lived in the cottage of the trio's Cleveland house for 50 years.
Hot in Cleveland has NOT yet been picked-up as a series, nor has Retired at 35 starring George Sagal. As soon as both or one of these are picked-up as a series, we will let you know. But both sound good to me! Stay with us, and thanks for visiting on this very busy Tuesday!
Sitcoms Airing Tonight (Wednesday, April 23)

The Middle - "The Wind Chimes" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Frankie pleads with a mean and unyielding Rita Glossner (Brooke Shields) to take down her wind chimes, whose noise is driving the Heck family crazy. Meanwhile, Axl and Hutch find a ratty, old couch abandoned on the street and try to figure out a way to retrieve it, instead of complaining to a pretzel manufacturer for skimping on the salt, Brick instead commits himself to coming up with a new pretzel snack idea for the company, and Sue informs the family that she and Darrin are dating again.

Suburgatory - "No, You Can't Sit With Us" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When Tessa takes a young social outcast under her wing, she decides to mentor her protégée for the Miss Chatswin pageant to make a statement to Chatswin society. The pageant rivalry between Tessa and Dalia comes to a head and Tessa finds herself stooping to Dalia’s level to win. Meanwhile, George, Noah, Fred and Victor go on a boy’s weekend camping trip where Fred accidently loses Victor in the wilderness.

Modern Family - "Australia" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
The entire family tags along as Phil fulfills his mom’s wish for him to return to his roots and visit the country where he was conceived, Australia. Unfortunately, Phil’s attempts to embrace his native land are met by a lot of rejection, while Jay and Claire let work eat into vacation time, and Mitch and Cam get reacquainted with an old friend (guest star Rhys Darby) they can’t stand but is now a big-time celebrity in Australia.

Mixology - "Dominic & Kacey" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
After countless meaningless hookups, Kacey confronts Dominic about their relationship status and is taken aback by his response. Dominic then finds himself in unfamiliar territory and turns to Tom of all people for advice. Meanwhile, Maya and Fab try to help a drunken Liv, who has been knocking back drinks all night, after they spot a flock of bar vultures eyeing her. And the chance of hooking up with someone is being hampered for Bruce and Cal as they fend off a table interloper.

Melissa & Joey - "More Than Roommates" (ABC Family, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Mel wants to get rid of the ugly chair that Joe inherited from his late grandmother.

Baby Daddy - "Livin' on a Prom" (ABC Family, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Ben tries to score Bon Jovi tickets for Bonnie; Riley and Danny act as prom chaperones.

Hot in Cleveland - "Elka Takes a Lover" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
On the eve of Victoria's big movie premiere, Emmy (Jennifer Love Hewitt) visits with some surprising news while Elka announces she'staken a younger lover (Chris Elliott).

The Soul Man - "Back in the Day" (TV Land, 11:00PM ET/PT)
A disagreement between Stamps and Kim causes Boyce and Lolli to reminisce about the early days of their relationship. Deion Sanders guest stars.

Tyler Perry's For Better or Worse - "A Stalker for Hire" (OWN, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Jennifer and the guys think Joseph hired Leslie's stalker.

Tyler Perry's For Better or Worse - "Being Responsible" (OWN, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Jennifer's fearful of getting tested for HIV.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of April 21) (All times Eastern unless noted)

Wednesday, April 23

  • Sally Field (Gidget/The Flying Nun) - Watch Sally on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Timothy Simons (Veep) - Timothy drops by The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Jim Gaffigan (My Boys/Welcome to New York) - Jim appears on on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Tim Allen (Last Man Standing/Home Improvement) - Tim visits Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Paul Scheer (The League) - Paul is a guest on @midnight at midnight on Comedy Central.
  • Wilmer Valderrama (That '70s Show) - Wilmer stops by The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT. He will also be on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
  • Sarah Hyland (Modern Family) - Sarah chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Chris Messina (The Mindy Project) - Chris will be on Pop Sugar Now on TV Guide Network at 6pm and on the next day on their website at noon.
  • Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family/The Class) - Jesse is a guest on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • David Alan Grier (Bad Teacher/Life with Bonnie/DAG) - David appears on The Queen Latifah Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • William Shatner ($#*! My Dad Says) - William will be on Larry King Now at 2/5pm PT/ET on Ora.tv and Hulu.
  • Ari Graynor (Bad Teacher) - Ari is a guest on The Couch on WLNY 10/55 in New York between 7-9am.
  • Max Charles (The Neighbors) - Max will be on The Couch on WLNY 10/55 in New York between 7-9am.
  • Christine Lakin Step by Step) - Christine will be on Big Morning Buzz Live on VH1 at 10am all this week.