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!


New on DVD/Blu-ray (January)

The Cosby Show - Seasons 5 & 6 (Mill Creek) Married with Children - Seasons 7 and 8 (Mill Creek) The Facts of Life - The Complete Series Welcome Back, Kotter - The Complete Second Season

01/06 - The Cosby Show - Season 5 (Mill Creek)
01/06 - The Cosby Show - Season 6 (Mill Creek)
01/06 - The Cosby Show - Seasons 5 & 6 (Mill Creek)
01/06 - Girls - The Complete Third Season (Blu-ray)
01/06 - Married with Children - Season Seven (Mill Creek)
01/06 - Married with Children - Season Eight (Mill Creek)
01/06 - Married with Children - Seasons Seven and Eight (Mill Creek)
01/13 - The Big House - The Complete Series
01/13 - Episodes - The Third Season
01/13 - The Facts of Life - The Complete Series (Shout! Factory
01/20 - Welcome Back, Kotter - The Complete Second Season
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Thursday, January 29

The Big Bang Theory - "The Anxiety Optimization" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
In the hopes of achieving a scientific breakthrough, Sheldon invites his friends to challenge him. Also, Wolowitz invents an embarrassing game about Raj.

Mom - "Kitty Litter and a Class Felony" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Christy does damage control when Bonnie acts out after the death of a loved one. Beverly D’Angelo Returns as Lorraine.

Two and a Half Men - "A Beer-Battered Rip-Off" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT)
When Alan breaks up with their social worker to get back together with Lyndsey, Walden worries it will affect Louis’ adoption.

The McCarthys - "The Ref" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT)
When Ronny dates Doug, a handsome ref who has a history of infuriating Arthur, Ronny invites him over for dinner to convince them he is a nice guy. Meanwhile, Katrina is worried Gerard is cheating on her when he begins acting suspicious.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of January 26) (All times ET unless noted)

Thursday, January 29

  • Mayim Bialik (The Big Bang Theory/Blossom) - Catch Mayim on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Alison Brie (Community) - Watch Alison on The Late Late Show at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Whitney Cummings (Whitney) - Whitney guest co-hosts The Late Late Show at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Simon Helberg (The Big Bang Theory) - Simon appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS. He also discusses his new film We'll Never Have Paris on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Andrew Rannells (Girls/The New Normal) - Andrew is a guest on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Cedric the Entertainer (The Soul Man/The Steve Harvey Show) - Cedric is a guest on a repeat of The Queen Latifah Show on your local station or at 3am on BET.
  • Megan Park (The Neighbors) - Megan discusses her starring role in the upcoming Hallmark Channel original movie A Wish Come True on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Robert Carradine (Lizzie McGuire) and Curtis Armstrong (Dan Vs.) - Robert and Curtis talk about what to expect in the new season of King of the Nerds on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Mario Lopez (Saved by the Bell/Saved by the Bell: The New Class) - Mario and his wife Courtney are guests on The Better Show, so check your local listings.
  • Josh Molina (Sports Night) - Josh is a guest on SI Now.