Thursday, March 15, 2012

Comedy Central Acquires Community For Fall 2013; Hallmark Channel Upfront: The Middle Coming March 2014

Today we have some new sitcom acquisition news for cable TV! Greendale Community College's most famous study group will have a new member beginning in Fall 2013 (and it's not Beetlejuice) as Comedy Central has reached a multi-year deal with Sony Picture Television to license the critically-acclaimed comedy series Community. The all-comedy channel will launch the series with three seasons beginning in the fall of 2013. Currently in its third season on NBC, Community stars Joel McHale as a fast-talking lawyer whose degree has been revoked and who now attends Greendale Community College sitting at the center of a study group comprised of a band of misfits who, adventure-by-adventure, learn more about themselves than their course work. Also among the series stars who comprise the study group are comedy legend Chevy Chase as "Pierce," a man whose life experience has brought him infinite wisdom; Gillian Jacobs as "Britta," the 20-something dropout with something to prove; Yvette Nicole Brown as "Shirley," a sassy middle-aged divorcee; Danny Pudi as "Abed," a pop culture junkie; Alison Brie as "Annie," a high-strung perfectionist; Donald Glover as "Troy," a former high school football star trying to find his way; Jim Rash as "Dean Pelton," the Dean of Greendale Community College; and Ken Jeong as Senor Chang.
NBC has not yet renewed the sitcom for a fourth season, but the sitcom returns to finish off its third season starting tonight at 8/7c. Comedy Central doesn't air many sitcoms, but they air Scrubs which is a long time staple for the network. The network also airs reruns of comedies 30 Rock, Futurama, Entourage and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Looking at that list of comedy styles, Community will feel right home on Comedy Central. Who knows if NBC does cancel it, maybe Comedy Central will revive it? For now, the story is reruns are coming to Comedy Central in fall 2013, so stay with us for further information!

The Middle will be coming to another cable network when it hits syndication! Hallmark Channel is proud to announce it has acquired the popular comedy series as the newest member in its programming family and will begin airing the first 88 episodes beginning March 2014. Additional seasons will join the rotation as they become available. The first-run, off-network comedy is a perfect fit in Hallmark Channel's line-up of family-friendly programming. The Middle joins ranks with such modern-day classics as The Golden Girls and Frasier, which are already tremendous ratings successes for Hallmark Channel. The Middle is Hallmark's first ever acquisition of a current series but I think it will fit right home as it has a modern classic feel to it.
Hallmark Channel will have rights to the series six months after it debuts in local syndication in Fall 2013 and on ABC Family (both of which we mentioned last week). Hallmark Channel will share the cable rights with ABC Family. We're not sure yet if there are any daypart restrictions between the two, but if both networks have no restrictions on times, then I could see Hallmark Channel airing the sitcom in the early evenings. If there is a restriction, I think ABC Family would have the evening/primetime rights over Hallmark, with Hallmark probably having daytime rights. But this is still a long way away, so stay with us for further information as we get it!

The Hallmark Channel announced this acquisition as part of their annual upfront presentation. They also announced a groundbreaking new original Daytime Series, Home & Family and it will launch in fourth quarter 2012 as part of the network's robust Lifestyle block. Home & Family is 220 original two-hour shows over 44 weeks from award-winning production company Woody Fraser Productions (Good Morning America, Nightline, The Dick Cavett Show). The hosted series is the ultimate destination for innovative home ideas and improvements, as well as, being the place for the latest information, trends and products for everyone in the home. Hosts for the new daytime talker will be announced shortly.
Also coming to the Lifestyle block is a new talk show, since The Martha Stewart Show is being canceled. Hallmark Channel and international super star Marie Osmond announce the start of production on a new one-hour talk show, Marie!, hosted by the popular entertainer. Production commences shortly for a fourth quarter 2012 premiere on the network. Associated Television International will produce the new lifestyle series which will air weekday afternoons on Hallmark Channel. Marie! is an inspirational journey to help people make a difference in their own lives. The segments will feature celebrity and non-celebrity guests who drop by for everything from revelatory discussion, lifestyle tips and trends, socially important issues, and breakthroughs that empower families. Marie's potential guests include everyone from the publicly famous to everyday people with out-of-the-ordinary experiences, to the star's famous family, her closest girlfriends, and the nation's leading experts in diverse fields designed to revolutionize lives.
In addition, Hallmark Channel, the industry's undisputed leading producer of original movies for television, announced for the first time in the network's young history that it is in active development on two Hallmark Channel Original Series for premiere in 2013. The potential series are based on concepts from authors whose books have been previously adapted into highly-successful original movies for Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movie Channel. Movie pilots for these two series, Cedar Cove and When Calls the Heart, will be produced in 2012 for broadcast during the 2012-2013 season. Should they move forward you'll seem them on air in 2013, so stay tuned for info on if and when that happens. They also announced that 28 Hallmark Channel Original Movies will premiere on the network Q4 2012 - Q3 2013. Among the new offerings: Patricia Heaton's The Christmas Heart, starring Teri Polo and Tess Harper; Annie Potts in The Music Teacher, Hallmark Channel's first-ever musical drama with original songs penned by former Madonna composer, Allan Ett; Tom, Dick & Harriett stars Steven Weber; Meddling Mom features Latin sensations Sonia Braga and Tony Plana; The Confession, is the second story in Beverly Lewis' popular book series Heritage of Lancaster County and stars Sherry Stringfield, Katie LeClerc and Cameron Stewart; and Hallmark Channel's ratings blockbuster "Countdown to Christmas" featuring more original holiday films than any other network.
That's about it from the notables at the Hallmark Channel upfront. Stay with us for any further information!

New on DVD/Blu-ray (September)

The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season Modern Family - The Complete Season 7

09/06 - Coach - Season One (Mill Creek) / Season Two / Seasons One and Two
09/06 - South Park - The Complete Ninteenth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season
09/20 - 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season
09/20 - Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season
09/20 - Modern Family - The Complete Season 7
09/20 - Veep - Season 5
09/27 - The Wonder Years - Season Six
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest

Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Sunday, October 23

The Simpsons - "Treehouse of Horror XXVI" (Fox, 7:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
In an encore of last season’s Halloween episode, Sideshow Bob finally kills Bart, only to reanimate him; Homer wakes up with short-term memory loss; and Lisa, Bart, and Milhouse get super powers from radiation.

Bob's Burgers - "Teen-a-Witch" (Fox, 7:30PM ET/PT)
With Halloween quickly approaching, Tina reveals her brilliant idea that will finally win her first place in the annual costume contest. When Tammy steals her idea, Tina is forced to seek the help of Mr. Ambrose, who leads her to alternate and other-worldly methods of winning. Meanwhile, Bob is on a mission to figure out who is stealing his perfectly crafted pumpkins.

The Simpsons - "Trust But Clarify" (Fox, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Lisa and Bart investigate Krusty’s suspicious new “Krustaceans” candy. Meanwhile, Homer wants a promotion at the nuclear plant and asks Marge to help him dress the part, and news anchor Kent Brockman struggles to find his feet in the changing media world.

Son of Zorn - "A Taste of Zephyria" (Fox, 8:30PM ET/PT)
After learning how Zephyria is depicted in the media, Zorn attempts to teach Alan about his culture. Meanwhile, Edie wages war with her new neighbors over their talking garden gnome.

Family Guy - "Inside Family Guy" (Fox, 9:00PM ET/PT)
FAMILY GUY takes viewers behind the scenes of a regular “FAMILY GUY” production week, with James Woods as the guide. See the ins-and-outs of what goes into the making of a “FAMILY GUY” episode and watch the drama unfold as Peter is replaced and ends up in the office of Fox Television Group Chairmen and CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman to pitch his very own new series.

The Last Man on Earth - "Five Hoda Kotbs" (Fox, 9:30PM ET/PT)
A post-apocalyptic road trip has everyone at war with each other and Gail is really pushed to her breaking point.

Bizaardvark - "Spoiler Alert: Belissa Returns" (Disney Channel, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When Paige and Frankie hit a writing slump and other bad things start happening to them, Paige begins to think they are cursed; Amelia and Dirk are at odds when the lifestyle Diva declutters the Dare Lair.

Complete TV Listings

Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 24)

Sunday, October 23

  • Patti LaBelle (Out All Night) - Catch Patti on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
Monday, October 24
  • Ricky Gervais (The Office) - Watch Ricky on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Tom Hanks (Bosom Buddies) - Tom appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He also talks about Inferno on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am and on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Elijah Wood (Wilfred) - Elijah is a guest on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Ana Gasteyer (People of Earth/Lady Dynamite/Suburgatory) - Ana visits Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation) - Nick stops by The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Ron Howard (Happy Days/The Andy Griffith Show) - Ron appears on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) - Zooey is a guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Michael Chiklis (Daddio) - Michael drops by Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Jameela Jamil (The Good Place) - Jameela appears on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Aya Cash (You're the Worst) - Aya talks about You're the Worst on the AOL Build ShoW at 2pm. She will also be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET.
  • Will Forte (The Last Man on Earth) - Will is a guest on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Mary Steenburgen (The Last Man on Earth/Ink) - Mary talks about The Last Man on Earth on NBC's Today in the 10am hour. She will also be on the AOL Build Show at 12:30pm.
  • Anna Camp (The Mindy Project) - Anna talks about Good Girls Revolt on People Now at 8:30am.
  • James Brolin (Life in Pieces) - James is a guest on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.