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[05/17/04 - 12:00 AM]
Lifetime, Spike TV Detail More Summer Plans
By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)

LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- Lifetime has slated three original movies and the return of three of its drama series for its summer schedule, announced today via press release. In addition, fellow cable channel Spike TV has released the complete details about the upcoming second season of its reality series "The Joe Schmo Show."

Lifetime Television's Summer Programming Lineup Features Original Movies Starring Mary-Louise Parker, Dana Delany and Kathleen Quinlan, Returning Popular Dramas 'Strong Medicine,' 'Wild Card' and 'Missing,' Season Finale of 'The Division'

- Fifth Season of 'Strong Medicine' Includes Series' 100th Episode -

This summer, kick back your high heels, dance beneath the stars and enjoy a savory Lifetime Television programming barbecue featuring such tasty treats as original movies starring Mary-Louise Parker ("Miracle Run"), Dana Delany ("Baby for Sale") and Kathleen Quinlan ("Perfect Romance"), and drama series showcasing Vivica A. Fox, Caterina Scorsone and Mark Consuelos ("MISSING"), Joely Fisher, Chris Potter and Loretta Devine ("Wild Card"), Rosa Blasi and Patricia Richardson ("Strong Medicine"), along with Bonnie Bedelia and Nancy McKeon ("The Division").

The warm weather extravaganza also includes mouth-watering specials celebrating TV movie superstars from Meredith Baxter, Cheryl Ladd to Jane Seymour, television's greatest sidekicks like Bea Arthur, Penny Marshall and Valerie Harper, and the institution of marriage as the cameras follow one couple from proposal to the altar - with a makeover in between.

Following are highlights of Lifetime's 2004 summer schedule:

Lifetime Original Movies

"Perfect Romance," June 7 at 8PM ET/PT -- Academy Award and Golden Globe nominee Kathleen Quinlan ("Apollo 13," "Breakdown") stars in "Perfect Romance," a romantic comedy about a divorced woman who is convinced that her daughter has terrible taste in men. She secretly goes online searching for her daughter's "Mr. Right," finding a man she thinks will be the perfect mate and striking up a cyber friendship. What she couldn't have anticipated is that he may be her "perfect romance," while her daughter's perfect match has been under their noses all along. "Perfect Romance" is produced by Alexander/Enright and Associates in association with Lucky Crow Clarity Pictures for Lifetime Television. Executive producers are Don Enright and Les Alexander ("Sex and the Single Mom," "Family Pictures"), Andrea Baynes ("Sex and the Single Mom," "Oklahoma City: A Survivor's Story"), Kerry David ("Agent Cody Banks," "Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination London"), and Allison Burnett ("Red Meat," "Autumn in New York") who also wrote the original teleplay directed by Doug Barr ("Beautiful Girl," "Sex, Lies and Obsession").

"Baby For Sale," July 12 at 8PM ET/PT -- Emmy Award winner and Golden Globe nominee Dana Delany ("China Beach," "Presidio Med," "A Time to Remember") stars in "Baby for Sale," inspired by the true story of an innocent couple who becomes embroiled in a dangerous sting operation to bust a baby- selling ring when they realize that the baby girl they are adopting is being auctioned off to the highest bidder. "Baby for Sale" is produced by Christal Film Productions in association with Muse Entertainment and distributed by Lions Gate Television Inc. for Lifetime Television. Leslie Greif ("Word of Honor," "Walker, Texas Ranger") and Judy Polone ("Infidelity," "Lucky 7") are the executive producers. John Wierick ("The Matthew Sheppard Story," "Crossed Over") is the writer.

"Miracle Run," Summer -- Golden Globe and Tony Award winner Mary-Louise Parker ("Angels in America," "Proof," "The West Wing") stars in "Miracle Run," the inspirational true story of how a mother's love and determination allows her twin autistic sons to flourish in a society expecting them to fail. "Miracle Run" is produced by Patriarch Pictures for Lifetime Television. Tom Patricia ("Homeless to Harvard," "RFK") is executive producer. Mike Maples ("The Ugly Little Boy") is the writer of the teleplay.

Original Dramas

"Strong Medicine," June 13th at 9 PM ET/PT- One of cable television's highest-rated original dramas, "Strong Medicine," starring Rosa Blasi and Patricia Richardson, returns for a fifth season with Tamera Mowry joining the cast. This season features its 100th episode - airing in October -- only the second original cable drama ever to reach this milestone.

In July, freshman hits "Wild Card," starring Joely Fisher, Chris Potter and new addition Loretta Devine ("Boston Public"), and "MISSING," starring Caterina Scorsone and new cast member Vivica A. Fox ("Kill Bill, Vol. 2"), return to the network's weekend primetime lineup. Both series averaged 2.1 million viewers during their first seasons.

Also in July, "The Division," starring Bonnie Bedelia, Nancy McKeon, Lisa Vidal, Amy Jo Johnson, Taraji P. Henson and Jon Hamm, concludes its fourth season.

Non-Scripted Programming

June 4th Weekend -- To celebrate June, the month of love and weddings, Lifetime has created a very special weekend, hosted by Lisa Rinna, beginning on Friday, June 4, with a romantic extravaganza featuring one couple's journey to the altar. In "Merge," "Head 2 Toe" and "The 'I Do' Diaries: Instant Wedding," viewers follow Ryan Fiege and Shellia McNatt of Los Angeles, on a romantic extravaganza, featuring a bride-to-be makeover, surprise proposal, six-hour engagement, dream wedding and incredible home redesign. Romantic movies are also sprinkled throughout the weekend along with surprise proposals and wacky Las Vegas weddings.

"Lifetime's Speaking of Women's Health," June 5t h at 11:30AM ET/PT - Marks the beginning of the fourth season of the popular series which explores all aspects of women's health, hosted by Florence Henderson, joined this season by Rachel Campos.

"What Should You Do?," June 18th at 10 PM ET/PT - The series returns for a second season with new host Leeza Gibbons ("Entertainment Tonight," "Extra"), featuring dramatizations of true stories followed by experts demonstrating ways to tackle real-life challenges with real-life solutions. From a wide- range of common emergencies, such as a child choking, to potentially dangerous situations like a home invasion, Gibbons guides viewers through life-saving scenarios. Returning as an expert for a second season is Candice DeLong, a 20-year veteran of the FBI and best-selling author of Special Agent: My Life on the Front Lines as a Woman in the FBI.

"The TV Movie Superstars: Women You Love," July -- For the first time ever, favorite television movie superstars come together to share the stories behind their most memorable roles on "TV Movie Superstars: Women You Love." The special includes Meredith Baxter, Delta Burke, Cheryl Ladd, Judith Light, Kellie Martin, Donna Mills, Markie Post, Annie Potts, Stephanie Powers, Connie Sellecca, Jane Seymour and Jaclyn Smith, along with endearing leading men such as Barry Bostwick, Stephen Collins, Michael Nouri, Jack Scalia and Jack Wagner.

TV's Greatest Sidekicks, August -- The special celebrates "women supporting women" as sidekicks on TV through memorable clips and lively, on-stage interviews. Many of the original stars of classic sitcoms will gather together again for a rare reunion with their sidekick. They may have not worked together for many years, but once re-united, it will seem as if time has stood still as they reminisce and share "war" stories and rare behind-the-scenes anecdotes.

LIFETIME is the leader in women's television and one of the top-rated basic cable television networks. A diverse, multi-media company, LIFETIME is committed to offering the highest quality entertainment and information programming, and advocating a wide range of issues affecting women and their families. Launched in 1984, LIFETIME serves 88 million households nationwide. In 1998, LIFETIME launched Lifetime Movie Network, now in more than 41 million homes, and in 2001, Lifetime Real Women. LIFETIME Television, Lifetime Movie Network, Lifetime Real Women, Lifetime Radio for Women, Lifetime Home Entertainment and Lifetime Online are part of LIFETIME Entertainment Services, a 50/50 joint venture of The Hearst Corporation and The Walt Disney Company, as is Lifetime magazine, which debuted in April 2003.

'Joe Schmo 2' Premieres on Spike TV Tuesday, June 15 10:00 PM, ET/PT - New Details

The Schmo Must Go On......

Spike TV's Hit Series 'Joe Schmo' Returns With All New 'Faux' Reality Fun Spoofing Popular Relationship Shows

New Season Features Daring Twist of a Joe and Jane Schmo

DVD Release 'The Joe Schmo Show: Season One Uncensored' Hits Retail Stores June 22

Spike TV's hit series returns in hilarious form with "Joe Schmo 2," premiering Tuesday, June 15 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT). Season one introduced American audiences to the next wave of reality programming, the "faux-reality" series where only one contestant was real. "Joe Schmo 2" not only features a "Joe Schmo," but in a daring twist, a "Jane Schmo" as well. Aside from "Joe" and "Jane," everyone else on the show, from the host to the other 'players,' are actors following a pre- determined storyline.

How will our two reality 'contestants' react to encountering a show filled with every outlandish element of reality TV? With so many reality shows out there, there is a wealth of stereotypes to choose from. How far can producers push this 'reality' a second time, and now with more than one "Schmo?" It's twice the fun, but twice the trouble. Will the actors be convincing enough? We saw from the first season that under pressure the actors sometimes fail to remember their fictitious life histories. Will our unsuspecting "contestants" figure it all out, and if they do, how will they react?

Tim Walsh is this season's "Joe Schmo." A resident of Washington, DC, Tim is true to his Irish roots -- a bartender with entrepreneurial aspirations to open his own bar. He's athletic, witty, outgoing and an overall genuine guy. Ingrid Wiese is our first ever "Jane Schmo." Also a resident of our nation's capitol, Ingrid is the classic girl-next-door meets woman-of-the-world. She's intelligent -- with a dream of becoming the next Madeline Albright someday -- strong-willed, and thankfully, up for anything.

Tim and Ingrid believe they are participating in a new series entitled "Last Chance for Love" and vying with other contestants for $100,000. "Last Chance for Love" parodies elements from many of the romance/relationship shows currently found on television ("The Bachelor/Bachelorette," "Average Joe," "For Love or Money," "Meet My Folks"), including over-the-top eviction ceremonies, cutthroat competitions, and many shocking twists.

Our two "Schmos" are again surrounded by stereotypical reality show contestants -- "The Bachelor & Bachelorette," "The Playah," "The Drunk," "The Gotta-Be-Gay Guy," "The Heir," "The Moron," "The Bitch," "The Weeper," and "The Stalker." Ralph Garman, who portrayed the smarmy host of the original "Joe Schmo," returns this season in disguise as Derek Newcastle, a pompous but randy British reality show host.

Like many reality shows on television, "Last Chance for Love" features over-the-top competitions for cheesy rewards -- either "one-on-one time with the bachelor/bachelorette" eating strawberries out by the pool, a "hot tub date" under the stars, or a "romantic dinner date" away from the other competitive suitors. No reality show would be complete without shocking revelations, and on "Last Chance for Love," these come in the form of "Falcon Twists," where a falcon flies in to reveal surprise twists, culminating with the host saying "The Falcon has spoken." Some of the competitions include:

* Strike A Pose - An endurance game where players must stay in challenging, seductive, and uncomfortable positions for as long as possible. Downward-facing-dog never burned so bad.

* Professions Of Love - Contestants profess their love to "Mr. & Ms. Right" by showcasing a special talent, performed beneath a Romeo- and-Juliet-style balcony.

* Bound By Love - Contestants are chained together to learn a number of dances to impress the bachelor and bachelorette.

As with most reality shows, there must be elimination ceremonies. "Last Chance for Love" takes these to a whole new level of cheesiness. Our host begins the proceedings with "Love...it's why we're all here..." Then the Bachelor or Bachelorette send away one of their romantic suitors, either via a "Pearl Necklace" ceremony for the women or a "Flame of Love" ceremony for the men. How will Tim and Ingrid act and react in this entire absurd scenario? Viewers will have to tune in to a new season of faux fun with "Joe Schmo 2" this summer to find out.

In addition to it's weekly premiere on Tuesdays at 10:00 PM, ET/PT, "Joe Schmo 2" episodes encore on Fridays (1:00-2:00 AM, ET/PT); Sundays (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT)); Mondays (11:05 PM - Midnight, ET/PT) immediately following WWE live RAW telecast and Tuesdays (9:00 -10:00 PM, ET/PT).

On Tuesday, June 22, Paramount Home Entertainment releases "The Joe Schmo Show: Season One Uncensored!," a 3-disc DVD box set with all 8 original broadcast episodes from the first season, including over 7 hours of entertainment, with special features that even Spike TV couldn't show. The DVD box set contains uncensored special features including audio commentary on the shocking season finale, by a series executive producer Rhett Reese and Matt Kennedy Gould ("Joe Schmo"); five deleted scenes; extended cast interviews; an extended and unblurred "Chocolate Sauce on Models" and "The Making of the Meal" -- The Gross Food Stunt competitions.

"Joe Schmo 2" was created by Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese, who also serve as writers and executive producers with David G. Stanley, Scott A. Stone and Anthony Ross. The series is exclusively produced for Spike TV by Stone Stanley Entertainment in association with Reese Wernick Productions. Peilin Chou, Spike TV's Vice President of Original Series serves as the Executive in Charge of Production.

Spike TV, the first network for men, is available in 87 million homes and is a division of MTV Networks. MTV Networks owns and operates the cable television programming services MTV: Music Television, MTV2, Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite, TV Land, VH1, CMT: Country Music Television, and Spike TV, as well as The Digital Suite from MTV Networks, a package of thirteen digital services, all of which are trademarks of MTV Networks. MTV Networks also operates and offers joint ventures, licensing agreements and syndication deals whereby its programming can be seen worldwide.





  [may 2004]  
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· ANGELS IN AMERICA (HBO)
· AVERAGE JOE (NBC)
· BABY FOR SALE (LIFETIME)
· BACHELOR, THE (ABC)
· BACHELORETTE, THE (ABC)
· BEAUTIFUL GIRL (ABC FAMILY)
· BOSTON PUBLIC (FOX)
· CROSSED OVER (CBS)
· DIVISION, THE (LIFETIME)
· ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT (SYNDICATION)
· EXTRA (SYNDICATION)
· FOR LOVE OR MONEY (NBC)
· HOMELESS TO HARVARD: THE LIZ MURRAY STORY (LIFETIME)
· INFIDELITY (LIFETIME)
· JOE SCHMO SHOW, THE (SPIKE TV)
· LUCKY SEVEN (ABC FAMILY)
· MATTHEW SHEPARD STORY, THE (NBC)
· MEET MY FOLKS (NBC)
· MERGE (LIFETIME)
· MIRACLE RUN (LIFETIME)
· MISSING (LIFETIME)
· PERFECT ROMANCE (LIFETIME)
· PRESIDIO MED (CBS)
· RFK (FX)
· SEX AND THE SINGLE MOM (LIFETIME)
· SEX, LIES AND OBSESSION (LIFETIME)
· STRONG MEDICINE (LIFETIME)
· TIME TO REMEMBER, A (HALLMARK)
· WALKER, TEXAS RANGER (CBS)
· WEST WING, THE (NBC)
· WHAT SHOULD YOU DO? (LIFETIME)
· WILD CARD (LIFETIME)
· WORD OF HONOR (TNT)





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