[08/11/09 - 12:54 PM]
MTV Flips the 'Script' with a Mix of New Programming Including Scripted, Reality and Comedy Series Which Tap Into Interests of Today's MTV Generation
Series greenlights include "Hard Times," "Untitled Rob Hoffman Show," "American Idiot," "Downtown Girls" and "Megadrive."

[via press release from MTV]


New York, NY (August 11, 2009) � MTV President of Programming Tony DiSanto today announced a greenlight slate filled with talent-driven projects, character-driven storylines and laugh-out-loud comedies � a bold mix that can only be found on MTV. Series greenlights include Hard Times (Working Title), Untitled Rob Hoffman Show (Working Title), American Idiot (Working Title), Downtown Girls and Megadrive. Based on the success of their initial runs, the network also picked up season two of Is She Really Going Out With Him? (20 episodes), Silent Library (20 episodes) and Teen Cribs (40 episodes.)

"Our viewers expect reinvention and creative diversity from MTV, and this greenlight slate gives them a peek at the broad spectrum of new ideas, tones and formats we are focusing on to break beyond just reality TV," said Tony DiSanto, President of Programming for MTV. "Our commitment to the scripted genre has never been stronger. And with the greenlight of 'Hard Times,' along with the many scripted projects in the development pipeline, we have focused in on the right concepts coupled with the right execution and talent to define our brand in this arena."

"All of these projects have one thing in common�they serve up laughter to our viewers. They also tap into a new generation of talent both in front of and behind the camera," said Liz Gateley, Senior Vice President, Series Development. "In 'Hard Times,' we've discovered two young creators in David and Seth along with a tremendous new star, Paul Iacono."

Broadening MTV's slate, this latest wave of projects includes Hard Times (Working Title), a scripted half-hour comedy series which humorously chronicles the life of an unpopular teenager, and Untitled Rob Hoffman Show (Working Title), an entertaining variety show combining dance, comedy and hidden camera stunts from actor Robert Hoffman. American Idiot (Working Title) takes extreme reality to the next level, while Downtown Girls follows five 20-somethings in a reality sitcom revealing their real-life exploits in New York City. Megadrive is an adrenaline-pumping reality comedy that follows thrill-seeking host Johnny Pemberton across the country as he tries to master the most extreme rides on land, sea and air.


HARD TIMES (Working Title): A twisted mix of "Superbad" and "The Wonder Years" � "Hard Times (Working Title)" is a half-hour single camera scripted comedy that follows the awkward life of RJ Berger (played by Paul Iacono, currently starring in the new "Fame" remake), a late-blooming loser struggling to navigate the minefield of being fifteen. This series takes a look at the classic teenage milestones we all experience, and the high school horror stories we would rather forget. MTV has ordered 12 episodes.

Hard Times is produced by David Katzenberg and Seth Grahame-Smith (author of "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies"). The pilot was directed by Katzenberg, and written by Grahame-Smith.

UNTITLED ROB HOFFMAN SHOW (Working Title): Actor Robert Hoffman, the multi-hyphenate star of this summer's "Alien's in the Attic" and "Step Up 2," tackles reality, comedy, sketch and variety in a series for the new millennium. It is "In Living Color" for the digital age as MTV gives Robert a platform to show off his inventive grass roots style of performance in a wild combination of comedy, dance, viral video and hidden camera stunts. From his epic character 'Urban Ninja,' pushing 30 million views online, and remarkable dance ability, to his gift for shooting guerilla style comedy, Robert will blow MTV viewers away with this original, modern variety show.

Hoffman and Michael Baum of Impression Entertainment are executive producers.

DOWNTOWN GIRLS: "Downtown Girls" follows the real-life exploits of five funny, sexy, smart, 20-somethings in New York City: a whip-smart vlogger/blogger, an aspiring lawyer, a chic boutique owner, a hip music executive and a bride to be. All five women attempt the impossible task of balancing work, guys, friends and making it in the big city.

Rico Martinez, Dan Lindau, Brooke Posch, and Conan Smith of Crossroads Television are executive producers.

MEGADRIVE: "Megadrive" features audacious host Johnny Pemberton as he attempts to master the most extreme vehicles 'off the road' often ending in mayhem and destruction. Although he has failed his drivers license test several times and has no business behind the wheel of anything that moves, Pemeberton will push these vehicles to their limits as he embarks on a hilarious adventure across America, where he challenges power, speed and gravity.

Tony Tackaberry and Allison Corn of Lion Television are executive producers.

AMERICAN IDIOTS (Working Title): An extreme reality series, "American Idiots (Working Title)" that features a cast of 'Idiots' who reenact popular viral videos for cash prizes. "American Idiots (Working Title)" celebrates the most talked about and shared amateur stunt videos on the Internet. The series is inspired by the best UGC sites on the Web, with stunts that have been seen by millions of online enthusiasts around the world. Web audiences select their favorite videos and bring the creators of these videos together with a cast of 'Idiots' who are competing for cash by replicating amped-up versions of the stunts.

Ashton Kutcher, Jason Goldberg, Rod Aissa and Karey Burke of Katalyst are executive producers.



From the producers of MTV Cribs, comes the second season of "Teen Cribs," a series that features ordinary young people who live in extraordinary homes designed with them in mind. Presented with the same look and feel as MTV Cribs, our cameras are spreading out across the country to bring viewers into the wonderfully pimped-out-pads that are customized and tricked-out specifically by parents to keep their kids happily entertained at home, but also safe, sound and accounted-for. We're talking about cribs with indoor tree houses, private nightclubs, computerized libraries, full-court gymnasiums, golf courses, over-the-top movie theaters, even secret rooms and passageways-everything needed to satisfy any young person's interests and obsessions! Viewers will see how these fortunate teens are turning their pads into the hottest spots in town and meet their generous parents and witness how they benefit from making their homes so kid-centric. Settle in and relax- there's no V.I.P list required.


Inspired by the popular website Hot Chicks with Douchebags, "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" is a hilarious daily strip that aims to tear down the mystery behind pop culture's latest unexplainable phenomenon- beautiful and innocent young sweethearts who fall for self-absorbed, overly-tanned, tattoo covered tools. After scouring the country for the most fertile bad boy breeding grounds, the show investigates every variety, each with their own language, lifestyle and over-the-top persona. Using the comedic viewpoint of our narrator, each episode will break down one relationship, focusing in on the self-absorbed dude and the girl who loves him. Along the way, our leading lady is armed with the helping hand and guidance of her loyal BFF, but in the end she will ultimately have to make a fateful decision. Will she stay with her bloke of a boyfriend or move on to a better man? John Foy and Troy Searer from Tijuana Entertainment and Gail Berman and Lloyd Braun from Berman Braun serve as the Executive Producers of "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" Jay Louis is executive producer and Rob LaPlante is co-executive producer.


Modeled after a Japanese game show, "Silent Library" will test the composure, endurance and determination of six friends who will have to watch as "one of their own" is subjected to unbelievable challenges ranging from brushing one's teeth with wasabi to having their face held in the path of the dreaded slapping machine. Within each episode of "Silent Library," a team of six friends will draw cards to determine who must step up to the plate to endure the next "test." The teammate who unluckily draws the skull and crossbones card will have to complete the task at hand to the satisfaction of the host and moderator of "Silent Library." Should a teammate not last long enough as they perform the stunt or should their friends seated beside them break the one rule of the library, silence, they'll lose out on winning big cash prizes. Silent Library is executive produced by Adam Dolgins and Frank Gregory.

About MTV:

MTV is the dynamic, vibrant experiment at the intersection of music, creativity and youth culture. For over 27 years, MTV has evolved, challenged the norm, and detonated boundaries � giving each new generation a creative outlet and voice that entertains, informs and unites on every platform and screen. On-air, MTV is the number one rated full-day ad-supported cable network for P12-24. Online, MTV.com averaged 21.7 million monthly unique visitors during the first quarter of 2009 � up +7% from the 4Q/2008. Total video streams for the first quarter of 2009 increased by 13% from 4Q/2008 and by 21% over the same time period last year. And MTV's successful sibling networks MTV2, mtvU and MTV Tr3s each deliver unprecedented customized content, super-serving music fans, college students and young American Latinos like no one else. MTV is part of MTV Networks, a unit of Viacom (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), one of the world's leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms.

  [august 2009]  


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