[07/10/03 - 12:00 AM]
TCA Summer Press Tour: Cable, Day 3
By Brian Ford Sullivan (TFC)

CHICAGO (thefutoncritic.com) -- The Television Critics Association began its summer press tour this week in which the various broadcast and cable networks talk about their upcoming plans to the nation's top critics and entertainment reporters. The first week of the annual three week tour is devoted to cable as Wednesday saw the Tennis Channel, Discovery Networks (Discovery Health, Animal Planet, TLC), Comedy Central, HGTV, A&E Networks, Showtime all holding sessions for the press.

Here's a breakdown of the highlights of each network's presentation:

A&E -- The struggling cabler talked heavily about its upcoming telefilms and specials. Set for a December bow are two new "Horatio Hornblower" films: "Loyalty" and "Duty" (specific dates and times TBA). Later this month look for the William H. Macy-hosted documentary "The True Story of Seabiscuit" on Sunday, July 27 at 9:00/8:00c and a Playboy 50th anniversary special this fall. Also on tap is the new BBC co-production "MI-5." The drama series kicks off on Tuesday, July 22 at 9:00/8:00c with a two-hour premiere. Lastly, A&E announced it has renewed its crime series "City Confidential" for a fifth season.

ANIMAL PLANET -- The Discovery Networks channel announced it has picked up its animal crime-fighting series "Animal Cops" for a second season. The new batch of episodes, set in Houston, bow on Monday, August 4 (time TBA). The first season was launched in Detroit.

COMEDY CENTRAL -- The network announced at its session it has picked up "Chappelle's Show" for a second season. 12 new episodes of the series (including a one-hour special) are set to debut in the first quarter of 2004. The renewal comes as no surprise as the series averaged a solid 2 million viewers in its initial run, frequently builing on its lead-in, "South Park." The channel also hyped its upcoming series "Reno 911" (Wednesdays at 10:30/9:30c starting July 23) and "Kid Notorious" (Wednesdays at 10:30/9:30c starting October 22) as well as the upcoming season of "The Man Show" (Sundays at 10:00/9:00c starting August 17) featuring new hosts Joe Rogan and Doug Stanhope.

DISCOVERY HEALTH -- The Discovery sibling plans to launch a new makeover series entitled "Buff Brides," based on Sue Fleming's bestselling book. The series, which kicks off Monday, October 6 (time TBA), centers on brides-to-be getting in shape for their big day.

SHOWTIME -- The big news from the pay channel was that it has shelved its plans for a proposed gay-themed premium network (a co-production with MTV) saying "It didn't have enough momentum for being the right thing for Viacom to do at this point in time." Nevertheless, the Viacom-owned channel talked highly about its upcoming lesbian drama series "The 'L' Word" which is scheduled to bow in January. 13 episodes of the series have been produced.

Also in store is a new half-hour docu-style series entitled "Freshman Diaries" (previously known as "Going to College"). The ten week series, from R.J. Cutler ("American High"), tracks 10 first-year students at the University of Texas at Austin. The series bows Sunday, August 31 at 9:30/8:30c with a replay at 11:00/10:00c that same night. Showtime also outlined some dates for its original films and documentaries: the drama "D.C. 9/11" will air September 7; the Sundance darling "The Boys of Second Street Park" runs September 28; Salma Hayek's directorial debut "The Maldonado Miracle" hits on October 12; and the Jeff Goldblum/Anthony LaPaglia-led "Spinning Boris" should broadcast in the fourth quarter of 2003.

The cabler did not reveal start dates for the new seasons of "Jeremiah" and "The Chris Isaak Show," both of which are expected in the fourth quarter of 2003. Also missing-in-action: air dates for the remaining installments of the sci-fi drama "Odyssey 5."

TLC -- The "Trading Spaces" network unveiled a host of new projects. Three new series are planned for its daytime schedule (all premiering Monday, September 15). "Perfect Proposal" (1:00 p.m. eastern) helps would-be grooms, and sometimes brides, pop the question in creative fashion. Newcomer Nikki Boyer hosts the half-hour series, which has a 60 episode order, with Julie Rose McCully ("A Wedding Story") executive producing. "Proposal" will replace "A Personal Story" which will end its run after four years on the air. Following "Proposal" is "Second Chance," a new series about people who try to reconnect with long-lost loves. Lastly, "Clean Sweep," in which couples clear out their overstuffed closets and try to reorganize their belongings, rounds out the new trio at 4:00 p.m. eastern.

Meanwhile three new series are also set for primetime. On Saturday, September 20 (time TBA), TLC will unveil "Date Patrol," a 13-episode reality series from Fremantle Media ("American Idol") that takes a team of relationship coaches and turns a love-challenged individual into a lean, mean dating machine. Then on December 20, a team of professionals will help viewers "In a Fix," a new makeover show for when home-improvement projects go sour. Finally, in the first quarter of 2004, viewers can look for "Overhaulin'," a new series in which sad-sack automobiles get beautified.

Session information on the Tennis Channel and HGTV was not available.

Upcoming TCA schedule: Thursday (July 10) - Turner, ESPN, HDTV panel, Lifetime, HBO.

  [july 2003]  


[10/27/16 - 10:00 AM]
"Bones: The Final Chapter" to Premiere Tuesday, January 3, on FOX
The 12-episode run will celebrate the inventive series and bring the storylines of Brennan (Emily Deschanel), Booth (David Boreanaz) and the Jeffersonian-FBI team to a close, allowing the show's loyal fans to say goodbye to these indelible characters.

[10/27/16 - 09:23 AM]
Wednesday's Broadcast Ratings: World Series Delivers Big for FOX
The network's coverage of Game 2 is up 36% from a year ago among adults 18-49.

[10/27/16 - 09:19 AM]
World Series Game 2 Posts 11.3 Overnight Rating, Drives FOX to Primetime Victory for Second Consecutive Night
FOX Sports spins the numbers for Wednesday, October 26.

[10/27/16 - 08:52 AM]
TV One's "Rickey Smiley for Real" Returns for a Third Season, Tuesday, Nov. 15 at 8 P.M. ET
While Rickey Smiley continues to struggle to maintain his sanity by juggling his hectic business, family and personal schedules, the show will also follow the hilarity and hi-jinx of his family and co-workers.

[10/27/16 - 08:16 AM]
Disney Channel Sees Future in Spin-Off of "That's So Raven"
As the pilot story goes, Raven is now a divorced mother to two pre-teen kids (a son and daughter), one of whom has inherited her ability to catch glimpses of the future.

[10/27/16 - 07:38 AM]
James Bay, Fifth Harmony, The Chainsmokers and Halsey, and Carlos Vives with Shakira to Perform at the "2016 American Music Awards(R)"
They join previously announced performers Lady Gaga, Green Day, Bruno Mars, Twenty One Pilots, and "The American Music Award of Merit" honoree and performer Sting.

[10/27/16 - 07:00 AM]
"The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" to Broadcast Two Live Shows During Election Week on CBS
On Monday, November 7, Stephen Colbert will be joined by Don Cheadle, Katherine Waterston and musical guest Drive-By Truckers.

[10/26/16 - 03:23 PM]
Lifetime Partners with "The View" for Primetime Event Program, "The View Live Election Special"
The special will feature "The View's" co-hosts from their set with a live studio audience, election-themed Hot Topics, interactive election activities and up-to-the-minute results from key battleground states.

[10/26/16 - 02:01 PM]
Freeform Says Farewell to "Pretty Little Liars" with an Exclusive One-Hour Tell-All Following the Series Finale
Troian Bellisario, Ashley Benson, Lucy Hale, Shay Mitchell and Sasha Pieterse, as well as executive producer I. Marlene King, will sit down for an hour long unbarred and uncensored tell-all after show.

[10/26/16 - 01:31 PM]
Video: Showtime(R) Releases Poster and New "Presidential" Teaser for Stephen Colbert's Live Election Night Special
On election night, Colbert will be reacting in real-time to the election results as the state by state returns come in, making it the perfect election night destination for people who want to see all the latest news, without actually having to watch the news.

[10/26/16 - 12:45 PM]
New Comedy "The Mick," Starring Kaitlin Olson, to Premiere Sunday, January 1, After NFL Doubleheader, on FOX
The series will then regularly air Tuesday nights following "New Girl."

[10/26/16 - 11:42 AM]
Samantha Bee Interviews Her First Male President, Barack Obama
Said installment of "Full Frontal with Samantha Bee" airs Monday, October 31 at 10:30/9:30c on TBS.

[10/26/16 - 11:00 AM]
Starz Adds Michael Nyqvist, Nazanin Boniadi, Nicholas Pinnock and Sara Serraiocco to Spy Thriller "Counterpart"
The espionage thriller with a metaphysical twist also stars Oscar(R) winner J.K. Simmons, Olivia Williams and Harry Lloyd.

[10/26/16 - 10:32 AM]
Weinstein Television's Epic Scripted Event Series "Waco," Lands on Spike TV
Previously announced in August, the six-part event series is based on the harrowing true story of the 1993 FBI siege of a religious sect in Waco, Texas that resulted in the deadly shoot out and fire.

[10/26/16 - 10:32 AM]
"Broad City" Original Series Soundtrack Available Friday, October 28 via Milan Records in Association with Comedy Central Records
The album artwork and packaging is designed by artist Mike Perry, who is also the creator of the animated show opener for "Broad City," and features an insert with spliff-rolling instructions.