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[07/22/04 - 12:00 AM]
TCA Summer Press Tour: Bravo
By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)

LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- The cable portion of the TCA's summer press tour began yesterday in which the networks outlined their plans for the 2004-05 season and beyond.

Here's the breakdown of Bravo's presentation (via press release):

BRAVO BUILDS ON ITS RECORD-BREAKING YEAR WITH NEW AND RETURNING ORIGINAL SERIES AND SPECIALS FOR FALL 2004 SEASON

BRAVO BUILDS ON ITS RECORD-BREAKING YEAR WITH NEW AND RETURNING ORIGINAL SERIES AND SPECIALS FOR FALL 2004 SEASON

NEW SERIES AND SPECIALS INCLUDE: 'PROJECT RUNWAY,' 'LONG WAY ROUND,' 'SHOWDOG MOMS & DADS,' 'MANHUNT,' 'BACKSPIN,' 'MIAMI SLICE,' AND AN ELTON JOHN CONCERT FROM RADIO CITY

'CELEBRITY POKER SHOWDOWN,' 'INSIDE THE ACTORS STUDIO' AND "SHOWBIZ MOMS & DADS' WILL RETURN FOR MORE EPISODES

JUDGES AND PREMIERE DATE ANNOUNCED FOR 'PROJECT RUNWAY' AND 'MANHUNT'

LOS ANGELES -- July 22, 2004 -- Bravo will build on its unprecedented success last year with a new slate of programming and specials for the fall 2004 season, including "Project Runway," "Long Way Round," "Manhunt," "Miami Slice," "Backspin," and an all-new Elton John concert. The announcement was made today by Lauren Zalaznick, President, Bravo. Also announced were a six-episode pick-up of the hit series "Celebrity Poker Showdown" and two twenty-episode seasons of Bravo's longest-running original series "Inside the Actors Studio."

"It's clear that in the past year Bravo has learned how to stand out," said Zalaznick. "Our goal this year is to let viewers know that Bravo stands for � an arts and entertainment network with an attitude and the power not only to reflect pop culture but influence it. I think our upcoming slate of new and returning series and specials will do just that."

Following is a summary of the fall 2004 programming news announced today by Bravo:

NEW ORIGINAL SERIES

"Manhunt: The Search for America's Most Gorgeous Male Model" (eight one-hour episodes)
Premieres Wednesday, October 13 (10:00pm ET)
"Manhunt" will turn the world of modeling on its high-heels by focusing the camera on the ever-neglected world of male fashion models. Watch as unsuspecting men are plucked from the streets and invited to participate in a series of challenges to determine who has the looks, style, stamina and charisma to be a male supermodel. "Manhunt: The Search for America's Most Gorgeous Male Model" will break fashion industry stereotypes as a group of young newcomers compete for the ultimate prize: a one-year contract with top international modeling agency, IMG. "Manhunt: The Search for America's Most Gorgeous Male Model" is a TWI production, the television arm of IMG. The series is produced by Stuart Krasnow ("Average Joe") for Bravo.

"Long Way Round" (six one-hour episodes)
Premieres Thursday, October 28 (10:00pm ET)
From London, England to Aldan, Siberia to Anchorage, Alaska - this six-hour series chronicles good friends Ewan McGregor ("Moulin Rouge," "Big Fish") and Charley Boorman ("On Edge") as they leave their celebrity lifestyles to circumnavigate the world on motorbikes. Departing London later this month, McGregor and Boorman will spend over three months traveling through some of the harshest terrain the world has to offer and taking on challenges and adventures indigenous to each country. To tell the story of their journey, the men will document their trip with the help of handheld cameras and production teams stationed along the way. "Long Way Round" is produced by Long Way Round Productions Ltd. Executive producers are David Alexanian, Russ Malkin, Ewan McGregor, and Charley Boorman.

"Project Runway" (ten one-hour episodes)
Premieres Tuesday, November 30 (9:00pm ET)
Bravo is teaming up with Miramax Television, the company behind Emmy Award-nominated series "Project Greenlight," and ELLE Magazine for "Project Runway," a behind-the-scenes documentary series and competition set in the other most glamorous business in the world - the fashion industry. Eager to give aspiring designers a chance to break into the notoriously difficult to crack fashion world, supermodel Heidi Klum will head a panel of industry luminaries, including top designer Michael Kors and Elle Magazine fashion directors Nina Garcia and Anne Slowey - who will serve as judges and industry mentors charged with selecting and molding the budding designers. The series will begin with the selection of twelve amateur designers who will compete week-to-week on design challenges. Contestants will be cut on a weekly basis based on their execution of the design challenges until only three remain to face-off with full lines on the catwalk at New York's Fall Fashion Week in February 2005. "Project Runway" is executive produced by Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz of Magical Elves ("Project Greenlight," "Last Comic Standing,") and Heidi Klum. Klum's managers and fashion world experts Desiree Gruber and Jane Cha of NYC-based Full Picture are producing.

"Backspin" (six one-hour episodes)
Premieres TBD
"Backspin" is a celebrity's life in rewind as told from a milestone in the star's life � such as winning a prestigious award or becoming involved in a scandal � back to childhood in search of the defining moment that set his or her destiny in motion. Afterwards, the storytelling is reversed again and events are replayed chronologically to illustrate the inevitable course of fate, followed by a quick recap of how the star's life has since changed. Celebrities focused on include, Halle Berry, Mel Gibson, Jennifer Anniston, Julia Roberts and Robin Williams. "Backspin" is produced by Danny Tepper for TEProductions.

"Showdog Moms & Dads" (six one-hour episodes)
Premieres TBD
A new six-episode series, "Showdog Moms & Dads," will take a sneak peak at what goes on behind the scenes in dog shows, and the passionate owners who sacrifice so much for the benefit of their pooch. Cameras will roll as these dedicated 'parents' take extraordinary measures to see their dogs shine. "Showdog Moms & Dads" is produced by World of Wonder for Bravo. The executive producers are Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato.

RETURNING SERIES

"Inside the Actors Studio"
Sundays (8:00pm ET) / Jennifer Lopez Premieres October 10
The signature Bravo original series hosted by James Lipton, now in its 11th season, offers the best lineup of exclusive interviews with today's most accomplished stars of film and television in the series' history. Bravo recently achieved the highest ratings in the show's history with guest Barbra Streisand. Host James Lipton will be joined this season by Jennifer Lopez, James Gandolfini, George Carlin and William H. Macy among others. "Inside the Actors Studio" is produced by Alice Christian and John Servidio for Betelgeuse, executive produced by James Lipton for In the Moment Productions.

"Celebrity Poker Showdown" (twelve two-hour episodes)
Premieres Fall 2004
Bravo's hit series will return as big as it debuted with a fourth tournament featuring expert poker player Phil Gordon and host Dave Foley ("NewsRadio," "The Kids in the Hall"). As before, each episode of "Celebrity Poker Showdown" will feature five celebrities competing against each other in a game of No Limit Texas Hold'em poker for the charity of their choice. "Celebrity Poker Showdown" is produced by Picture This Television in association with Bravo.

"Showbiz Moms & Dads" (six one-hour episodes)
Premieres 2005
Whether it's an aggressive stage mom pushing her child forward, or it's a reluctant, uncertain mother whose child is the driving force, "Showbiz Moms & Dads" explores the true lives of these determined families-and reveals stories both heartwarming and shocking. The series achieved both critical and ratings success when the first season aired earlier this year. Season two will focus on all new families, as they make their way along the unpredictable road to fame. Over the course of six episodes, we'll witness the extreme measures some parents will take to make their children into stars. "Showbiz Moms & Dads" is produced by World of Wonder for Bravo. The executive producers are Fenton Bailey, Randy Barbato and David Perler.

SPECIALS

"Miami Slice" (six one-hour episodes)
Premieres Monday, September 6 (8:00pm ET)
Bravo's "Miami Slice," a new documentary series that explores our nation's recent fascination with plastic surgery and the trend that's forever changing the face of America, will premiere Monday, September 6 at 8:00pm ET with two back-to-back episodes. Following the premiere, the series will air Tuesday, September 7, through Friday, September 10, at 8:00pm ET. Through the lives of five top Miami plastic surgeons, viewers will get to see the everyday personal and business decisions made by doctors who have their patients' appearances - not to mention lives - in their hands. Miami Slice" is produced by September Films ("Bridezillas," "Single In The City") in association with Bravo. David Green and Sally Miles are executive producers for September Films.

"Elton John Concert" (working title)
Premieres Saturday, November 27 (8:00pm ET)
It's goodbye yellow brick road, hello Bravo, when award-winning musician Elton John performs in concert at Radio City Music Hall this summer for a live-to-tape special to premiere on Bravo. The legendary showman will perform his greatest hits, which span four decades, with the accompaniment of the Royal Academy of Music's Symphony Orchestra and the Julliard School of Music Orchestra.

"The 100 Scariest Movie Moments" (five one-hour specials)
Premieres, Thursday, October 28 (8:00pm ET)
Not for the meek, this five-part original special counts down the most bone-chilling moments in cinematic history. Through film clips, production stills, and interviews with the filmmakers and actors who gave us these frights, such as Wes Craven ("The Nightmare on Elm Street"), Courtney Cox ("Scream"), Peter Jackson ("Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King") and John Carpenter ("Halloween") � we'll explore the imagination and story behind these blood-curdling moments. "The 100 Scariest Movie Moments" is produced by Kaufman Films in association with Bravo.

BRAVO ANTES UP FOR A FOURTH TOURNAMENT OF 'CELEBRITY POKER SHOWDOWN'

HIT SERIES WILL RETURN WITH SIX ALL-NEW EPISODES THIS FALL WITH HOST DAVE FOLEY

LOS ANGELES -- July 22, 2004 -- This fall, Bravo will present more high-stakes action featuring Hollywood's biggest and brightest stars, when "Celebrity Poker Showdown" returns for a fourth tournament of television's hottest poker show. A new six-episode tournament will premiere this fall featuring twenty-five new celebrity poker players and returning host Dave Foley and poker expert Phil Gordon.

"Celebrity Poker Showdown" has continued to garner incredible ratings, quickly becoming the network's second highest rated original series, behind "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy." This season "Celebrity Poker Showdown" has expanded from one hour to two and has moved to a new night, Thursdays, and has established an average audience of approximately one million viewers each week.

The new tournament will once again be filmed before a live audience at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. Each episode of "Celebrity Poker Showdown" will feature five celebrities competing against each other for a piece of the $250,000 prize pool in a game of No Limit Texas Hold'em poker for the charity of their choice. Each week a new crop of stars will take to the table to challenge their peers. The winner from each week's game will go on to compete in the championship final sixth episode � and then a new tournament will begin all over again with twenty five new celebrities. Viewers will have the inside track on the hands the different players are holding via hidden cameras. They will also be able to hear from the eliminated players, who will watch the remainder of their respective matches from the 'Loser's Lounge,' via closed circuit television.

The finale of the current tournament of "Celebrity Poker Showdown" will air on Thursday, August 12 at 9:00pm ET. Musician Dave Navarro and NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon will face off against the winners of the next three games for the $100,000 first place prize. Past winners include Nicole Sullivan ("King of Queens") and Maura Tierney ("ER").

"Celebrity Poker Showdown" is produced by Picture This Television in association with Bravo. Marcia Mul� and Bryan Scott, Andrew Hill Newman and Joshua Malina are the executive producers.

ACTRESS AND PERFORMER JENNIFER LOPEZ WILL JOIN 'INSIDE THE ACTORS STUDIO' HOST JAMES LIPTON TO TELL HOW SHE WAS 'MADE' IN MANHATTAN ON SUNDAY, OCTOBER 10 AT 8:00 PM ET

JAMES GANDOLFINI, WILLIAM H. MACY AND GEORGE CARLIN ALSO TAKE PART IN EXCITING 11TH SEASON

"INSIDE THE ACTORS STUDIO" PICKED UP FOR TWO MORE SEASONS INCLUDING 40 ALL NEW EPISODES

LOS ANGELES -- July 22, 2004 -- Not to be outdone by a 10th anniversary season that included such celebrated guests as Barbra Streisand, Russell Crowe and the cast of "Will & Grace" and enjoyed the highest ratings in the series history, "Inside the Actors Studio" welcomes the talented Jennifer Lopez to the New School stage to kick off its 11th year. The one-hour episode will air Sunday, October 10 at 8:00pm ET, it was announced today by Lauren Zalaznick, President of Bravo. "Inside the Actors Studio" just received its eighth consecutive and ninth overall Emmy nomination.

A singer, dancer and Golden Globe nominated actress, Jennifer Lopez got her start on the television show "In Living Color," and has starred in such diverse films as "Selena," "Blood & Wine" with Jack Nicholson, "The Cell," "Mi Familia," "Out of Sight," "Enough," "The Wedding Planner," "Maid in Manhattan" and this fall's "Shall We Dance" co-starring Richard Gere and Susan Sarandon. She has also guest-starred on many television shows, most recently as a wedding singer for the sixth season finale of "Will & Grace."

In addition to Lopez, Golden Globe-winning actor James Gandolfini ("The Sopranos"), Emmy-winning William H. Macy ("Fargo," "Seabiscuit"), legendary actor/comedian George Carlin and Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Connelly ("A Beautiful Mind," "House of Sand and Fog") will all be sharing the details of their crafts and careers this season on "Inside the Actors Studio." The breadth of these actors' experiences will surely make this season's episodes some of the most electrifying in "Actors Studio" history. Additionally, the series has just been picked up for two more twenty-episode seasons.

Over the past ten seasons, "Inside the Actors Studio" has provided a forum for the passion, perspectives and perceptions of more than 160 of contemporary film, theater and television's most noteworthy contributors. Recent guests have included Tom Cruise, Renee Zellweger, Diane Lane, Hugh Jackman, Bette Midler, Charlize Theron and recently Lipton has examined the television world with the casts of the groundbreaking series "Will & Grace" and "The Simpsons."

Nominated for nine Emmy Awards, "Inside the Actors Studio," which is now seen in 125 countries, was launched in April 1994 with Academy Award-winning actor and longtime Actors Studio President, Paul Newman. For the past ten years, the Actors Studio Drama School at New School University has opened its doors for a series of evenings featuring major actors and directors who discuss their craft and share the secrets of their artistic achievements.

NEW BRAVO REALITY/ADVENTURE SERIES 'LONG WAY ROUND' TO PREMIERE THURSDAY, OCTOBER 28 AT 10:00PM ET

SERIES DOCUMENTS EWAN MCGREGOR AND CHARLEY BOORMAN'S GLOBAL MOTORBIKE ADVENTURE

LOS ANGELES -- July 22, 2004 -- "Long Way Round," the new Bravo series chronicling actor Ewan McGregor's four-month transcontinental motorcycle journey with his friend and fellow actor Charley Boorman, will premiere its six episode run on Thursday, October 28 at 10:00pm ET it was announced today by Lauren Zalaznick, President of Bravo.

McGregor and Boorman began their journey in London in late April. The pair plans to arrive at their final destination, New York City, by the end of this month. The journey is being made by motorbike, with one train, plane and boat to get them across the seas. In preparation for the trip, both men underwent training in a variety of areas including nutrition, self-defense, first aid, off road skills, bike maintenance, basic foreign language and cultural awareness skills and hostile environment training from former UK Special Forces Soldiers.

"Long Way Round" will show the actors in a way the audience has never seen them before, utterly left to their own devices and foregoing a more comfortable lifestyle. Their journey takes them over 20,000 miles, circumnavigating the longest continuous landmass on earth through the Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, China, Siberia, Alaska and Canada before arriving in the Untied States. Undoubtedly, they will encounter hardships along the way, including cultural and language barriers as they pitch tent and attempt to live off the land. The journey is not only a test of their endurance, but a cultural lesson too as they will take part in a range of activities native to the lands they traverse.

McGregor is best known for his movie roles in "Moulin Rouge," "Trainspotting," the "Star Wars" trilogy and more recently starred in the Golden Globe nominated film "Big Fish." Boorman, the son of famed director John Boorman ("Hope and Glory," "Deliverance"), is also a movie veteran with a multitude of screen credits including "Excalibur," "The Serpent's Kiss," "The Emerald Forest" and many more. The two actors met eight years ago on the set of "Serpent's Kiss," where they discovered their mutual passion for motorcycles and kick-started an enduring friendship.

"Long Way Round" is produced by David Alexanian of Santa Monica based Elixir Films and Russ Malkin of London based Image Wizard TV.

'MANHUNT: THE SEARCH FOR AMERICA'S MOST GORGEOUS MALE MODEL' TO PREMIERE ON BRAVO WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 13 AT 10 PM ET

NEW SERIES WILL TURN THE SPOTLIGHT ON THE UNEXPLORED WORLD OF MALE MODELING IN AN 8-PART COMPETITION SERIES

LOS ANGELES -- July 22, 2004 -- On Wednesday, October 13 at 10:00pm ET Bravo will premiere the first-ever televised nationwide search for the king of the catwalk with "Manhunt: The Search for America's Most Gorgeous Male Model," it was announced today by Lauren Zalaznick, President of Bravo.

"Manhunt" will turn the world of modeling on its high-heels by focusing the camera on the ever-neglected world of male fashion models. Watch as unsuspecting men are plucked from the streets and invited to participate in a series of challenges to determine who has the looks, style, stamina and charisma to be a male supermodel. "Manhunt: The Search for America's Most Gorgeous Male Model" will break fashion industry stereotypes as a group of young newcomers compete for the ultimate prize: a one-year contract with top international modeling agency, IMG.

In the tradition of announced Bravo series "Project Greenlight," "Project Runway," and "Situation:Comedy," "Manhunt: The Search for America's Most Gorgeous Male Model" is the newest show on the network to reveal the blood, sweat and tears behind the creative process. Though men's fashion is exploding onto the pop-culture and style scene � witness the metrosexual phenomenon � and female models have been given superstar status for years, little attention has been paid to their male counterparts who make their own contributions that drive the glamorous worldwide fashion machine... until now.

"Manhunt" will consist of eight, one-hour episodes and will follow 15 men as scouts pluck them from America's streets, bars, gyms and colleges to see if they have the look, the fire and the style to be a model. Once chosen, the finalists will compete against each other in a series of challenges until only one remains � the newly crowned most gorgeous male model.

"Manhunt: The Search for America's Most Gorgeous Male Model" is a TWI production, the television arm of IMG. The series is produced by Stuart Krasnow ("Average Joe") for Bravo.

BRAVO EXPLORES OUR NATION'S FASCINATION WITH PLASTIC SURGERY WITH THE SIX-PART DOCUMENTARY SERIES 'MIAMI SLICE'

"MIAMI SLICE" WILL PREMIERE MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 6 AT 8:00PM ET

LOS ANGELES -- July 22, 2004 -- On Monday, September 6 at 8:00pm ET, Bravo will premiere two back-to-back one-hour episodes of "Miami Slice," a new documentary series that explores our nation's recent fascination with plastic surgery and the trend that's forever changing the face of America, it was announced today by Lauren Zalaznick, President of Bravo. Following the premiere, the series will air Tuesday, September 7, through Friday, September 10, at 8:00pm ET.

Through the lives of five top Miami plastic surgeons, viewers will get to see the everyday medical, personal, and business decisions made by doctors who have their patients' appearances -not to mention lives - in their hands.

"Miami Slice" follows doctors Lenny Hochstein, Howell Tiller, Constantino Mendieta, Ary Krau and Jhonny Salomon as they juggle their craft, their personal obligations, their businesses and their relationships. As each doctor's unique focus is explored, viewers get a first-hand understanding of the pressures, thrills, excesses and importance of this controversial medical practice.

"What we do is the height of arrogance," says Dr. Tiller. "To make people better than God intended!"

"Miami Slice" is produced by September Films ("Bridezillas," "Single In The City") in association with Bravo. David Green and Sally Miles are executive producers for September Films.

DESIGNER MICHAEL KORS AND ELLE MAGAZINE�S NINA GARCIA AND ANNE SLOWEY TO JOIN SUPERMODEL HEIDI KLUM AS JUDGES ON BRAVO'S 'PROJECT RUNWAY'

COMPETITION SERIES TO PREMIERE TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 30 AT 9:00 PM ET

LOS ANGELES -- July 22, 2004 �- "Project Runway," Bravo and Miramax's behind-the-scenes documentary series and competition set in the glamorous and rigorous world of the fashion industry will premiere on Tuesday, November 30 at 9:00pm ET, it was announced today by Lauren Zalaznick, President of Bravo. Cameras will roll for ten one-hour episodes as up-and-coming designers are given all the resources of a top designer to prepare a competitive runway show for the next New York Fall Fashion Week.

Eager to give aspiring designers a chance to break into the notoriously difficult-to-crack fashion world, supermodel and designer Heidi Klum will head a panel of industry luminaries, including top women's and men's wear designer Michael Kors and Elle Magazine fashion director Nina Garcia and Fashion News Director Anne Slowey - who will serve as judges and industry mentors charged with selecting and molding the budding designers.

The series will begin with the selection of twelve amateur designers who will compete week-to-week on design challenges. Contestants will be eliminated on a weekly basis based on their execution of the design challenges until only three remain to face-off with full lines on the catwalk at New York's Fall Fashion Week in February 2005. The winner's designs will be photographed for ELLE by the magazine's world-renowned Publication Director, Gilles Bensimon. The winning designer will also receive a mentorship from the Banana Republic Design Team. Members of the Banana Republic Design Team will meet with winning "Project Runway" contestant once per month for six months to offer guidance and advice on product development and design process.

"Project Runway" is executive produced by Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz of the Emmy nominated Magical Elves ("Project Greenlight," "Last Comic Standing,") and Heidi Klum. Klum's managers and fashion world experts Desiree Gruber and Jane Cha of NYC-based Full Picture are producing the series. Barbara Schneeweiss, director of television, and Eli Holzman, vice president of television, will oversee the production on behalf of Miramax Television. "Project Runway" is sponsored by Banana Republic, Cotton, Inc. and L'Oreal Paris.

BRAVO'S BUZZ-WORTHY HIT SERIES 'SHOWBIZ MOMS & DADS' RETURNS FOR A SECOND SEASON WITH ALL-NEW OUTRAGEOUS FAMILIES PREMIERING EARLY NEXT YEAR

THE CLAWS REALLY COME OUT IN A SPIN-OFF SERIES 'SHOWDOG MOMS & DADS'

LOS ANGELES -- July 22, 2004 -- This fall, Bravo will return with a new season of one of the most talked about series of the year, "Showbiz Moms& Dads." Additionally, a spin-off series will take a look at the lives of the parents of four-legged children, "Showdog Moms & Dads," it was announced today by Lauren Zalaznick, President of Bravo.

Whether it's an aggressive stage mom pushing her child forward, or it's a reluctant, uncertain mother whose child is the driving force, "Showbiz Moms & Dads" explores the true lives of these determined families - and reveals stories both heartwarming and shocking. The series achieved both critical and ratings success when the first season aired earlier this year. Season two will focus on all new families, as they make their way along the unpredictable road to fame. Over the course of six episodes, we'll witness the extreme measures some parents will take to make their children into stars.

A new six-episode series, "Showdog Moms & Dads," will take a sneak peak at what goes on behind the scenes in dog shows, and the passionate owners who sacrifice so much for the benefit of their pooch. Cameras will roll as these dedicated 'parents' take extraordinary measures to see their dogs shine.

"Showbiz Moms & Dads" and "Showdog Moms & Dads" are produced by World of Wonder for Bravo. The executive producers for "Showbiz Moms & Dads" are Fenton Bailey, Randy Barbato and David Perler. Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato will executive produce "Showdog Moms & Dads."





  [july 2004]  
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· AVERAGE JOE (NBC)
· BACKSPIN (BRAVO)
· CELEBRITY POKER SHOWDOWN (BRAVO)
· ER (NBC)
· KING OF QUEENS, THE (CBS)
· LAST COMIC STANDING (NBC)
· LONG WAY ROUND (BRAVO)
· MANHUNT: THE SEARCH FOR AMERICA'S MOST GORGEOUS MALE MODEL (BRAVO)
· PROJECT GREENLIGHT (HBO)
· PROJECT RUNWAY (LIFETIME)
· QUEER EYE (BRAVO)
· SIMPSONS, THE (FOX)
· SOPRANOS, THE (HBO)
· WILL & GRACE (NBC)





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