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Friday
TBA

Let's Ask America*

Syn

10a/
3p

Let's Make a Deal

CBS

11a

The Price Is Right

CBS

2p

Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?*

Winter Finale
Syn/ABC

7p

Wheel of Fortune

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7:30p

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8p

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CBS

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TBA

The Game Plane

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1p

Rewrapped

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Food

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*times vary by market, check local listings.
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It's Happy Happy Time!
Happy Birthday...

... to Vanna White. The "Wheel of Fortune" letter toucher turns 57.

Happy Anniversary...
... to The Pyramid.
The game with arguably the most exciting endgame on television turns 40.

Happy Trails...
... to "What's My Line?" On this date in 1967, the original series left the air after more than 17 years on CBS. The last mystery guest: Moderator John Charles Daly.

 

Scene and Heard...

"If you like what I did, I'm Bob Eubanks. If you don't like what I did, I'm Bob Barker."
-Bob Eubanks, on "The Newlywed Game"

 

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@11:30
"@midnight" Takes 11:30p Spot for Two Weeks Starting January 5
From the Futon Critic
Bending the very fabric of time and space, on Monday, January 5, Comedy Central's Emmy(R)-nominated "@midnight with Chris Hardwick" moves to 11:30 p.m. ET/PT, following "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart." Like most New Year's resolutions however, it will only last for two weeks! On Monday, January 19 the series returns to Midnight ET/PT, following the series premiere of "The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore."

Ringing in 2015, the show's upcoming panelists include Scott Aukerman, Doug Benson, Neal Brennan, Paget Brewster, Whitney Cummings, Andy Daly, Jon Daly, Ron Funches, Brett Gelman, Nikki Glaser, John Hodgman, Jen Kirkman, Hari Kondabolu, Marc Maron, Paul Scheer and Paul F. Tompkins.

"@midnight with Chris Hardwick" leads viewers down the ultimate internet wormhole with a rotating lineup of today's top comedians battling nightly to determine who has the funniest take on the day's social media and pop culture. Using social media as the catalyst and a fake game show as the setting, "@midnight" challenges comedians to win the Internet by slashing the craziest, most absurd news and posts that social media has to offer: from the latest celebrity Instagram shots to the creepiest Craigslist posting to Buzzspeed lists and infamous #HashtagWars.

Dominating the social media landscape in the late-night arena and receiving a 2014 Emmy(R) nomination for "Outstanding Interactive Program," the series ranks #1 on SocialGuide's All Network Types, Late Fringe ranker. On-air, "@midnight" reaches the youngest and most male audience of all late night programs and ranks in the top three late night shows with People 18-24, Men 18-24 and Men 18-34.

The Futon Critic
Comedy Central PR

posted 12/19/14

Thursday: We'll Meet Again
CBS Takes The Night EASY
From the Futon Critic
CBS (8.705 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.8, #1) was the network to beat on Thursday with a repeat of "The Big Bang Theory" (10.672 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #T1) followed by new episodes of "Mom" (10.106 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.3, #T1), "Two and a Half Men" (8.947 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.9, #3), "The McCarthys" (7.100 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.6, #4) and "Elementary" (7.703 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #5).

NBC (3.710 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 0.9, #2) then took home a distant second place with a new "The Biggest Loser" (3.787 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 0.9, #6) and the inaugural "People Magazine Awards" (3.672 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T7).

Next up was FOX (3.684 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.8, #3) with a repeat "Bones" (3.563 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T7) and a second "Bones" (3.804 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T7).

Meanwhile, ABC (2.897 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.7, #4) served up a new "The Taste" (3.071 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T7) and a repeat "How to Get Away with Murder" (2.549 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T11).

And finally, The CW (1.650 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5) offered up its annual "iHeartRadio Jingle Ball" (1.838 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T11) and a repeat of "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (1.084 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #13).

On cable, "@midnight", powered by the series finale of "The Colbert Report", crested 1 million for the first time with 1.055 million. The winner of the night, "Pawnography", averaged 1.9 million viewers over the hour. "Project Runway All-Stars" won over 1.465 million. "Beat Bobby Flay" served 1.018 million. "Food Truck Face Off" signed off with 588,000.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily
TV by the Numbers

posted 12/19/14

Wednesday: Next Up, "Worlds Apart"
CBS Takes The Night EASY
From Entertainment Weekly
Season 29 of Survivor is in the books. Which means it is now time to look ahead to season 30. At the end of tonight’s San Juan del Sur finale, Jeff Probst revealed the title and theme of the next installment to kick off with a special 90-minute premiere on Feb. 25.

Titled Survivor: Worlds Apart, the season will feature three tribes of all new players representing the cross section of American society. “It’s White Collar vs. Blue Collar vs. No Collar,’ explains Probst. “White Collars are the people who typically in life are educated, might work in an office, wear a suit—they make the rules. Blue Collar—the heart of America. They typically work outdoors. They might wear a uniform. They work with their hands. They follow the rules. And the No Collars are the people who break the rules. They don’t go by convention. They don’t care about the status quo.”

The twist brings to mind last spring’s Brains vs. Brawn vs. Beauty battle of Survivor: Cagayan, which turned out to be one of the show’s best seasons ever. According to Probst, this one—which was filmed in Nicaragua last summer—could top it. “Person for person and pound for pound, I will say that this is the best group of people I think we’ve ever had,” says Probst. “That doesn’t mean there aren’t duds in the cast, but if you just had to take one entire group of people, I love this group. And I don’t often come up front anymore and say I really like a season because I know that that’s very biased and it’s my own opinion. But just my own Jeff Probst opinion—I have not seen a second of footage cut yet. Just based on my experience, this was one of my favorite seasons of all time.”

CBS (9.110 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) was the network to beat on Wednesday thanks to the two-hour season finale of "Survivor: San Juan del Sur" (9.556 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) plus the "Survivor: San Juan del Sur Reunion" (6.877 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T2).

NBC (5.844 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T2) then claimed the silver with its specials "Michael Buble's Christmas in New York" (7.431 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5) and "The Sing-Off" (5.051 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5).

Next up was ABC (4.827 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T2) and its repeat lineup of "The Middle" (5.606 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.4, #4), "The Goldbergs" (5.021 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5), "Modern Family" (6.001 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T2), "Black-ish" (4.569 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5), another "Black-ish" (4.100 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.1, #11) and yet another "Black-ish" (3.667 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.0, #12).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.580 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T2) served up a new "Hell's Kitchen" (3.597 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5) followed by the season finale of "Hell's Kitchen" (3.563 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5).

And finally, an encore of "Greatest Holiday Commercials Countdown" (1.834 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T13) plus the fall finale of "The 100" (1.411 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T13) closed out the evening on The CW (1.622 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5).

On cable, the key word was consistency:

- "Top Chef" (Bravo, 10p): 983,000
- "Kitchen Inferno" (Food, 10p): 747,000
- "@midnight" (Comedy, 12m): 618,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily
TV by the Numbers
Entertainment Weekly
Christian Post

posted 12/19/14

Happy Friday! Lightning Round
... or "'Stephen Colbert': 2005-2014"

  • Craig Ferguson signs off from "The Late Late Show" (TV Guide)
     
  • Jeff Probst had a secret ending to the finale planned... and it. Was. Awesome (Entertainment Weekly)
     
  • Perez Hilton is a brother in the Big Blogger house... wait a minute (The Sun)
     
  • Billy Eichner named Breakout Star of the Year by People in made-for-TV awards ceremony (Gay Star News)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Grant Denyer (Daily Mail) and Phil Keoghan (Hitfix)
     
  • AND FINALLY... the epic Colbert Report finale, when "Stephen", Santa, President Lincoln, and Alex Trebek ride off into immortality (YouTube)

posted 12/19/14

Broken 2: Electric Boogaloo
CMT Renews Steve Austin Game for New Season
From the Futon Critic
There's no easy day at the "Broken Skull" ranch. Steve Austin returns with his trademark tough love for a second season of STEVE AUSTIN'S BROKEN SKULL CHALLENGE, premiering Sunday, January 4 at 8:00-9:00 p.m., ET/PT. The toughest competition series on TV, each week men and women from across the country battle it out in physically and mentally grueling challenges until only one is left standing. That person earns the chance to win $10,000 by beating the new and improved Skullbuster, a harrowing obstacle course designed by Austin himself. Even the strongest athletes fall victim to the Skullbuster, as the course breaks down competitors, body-part by body-part.

Each episode of BROKEN SKULL CHALLENGE involves a series of gritty physical challenges, as some of the most elite athletes in America compete head-to-head for the win. Contestants includes highly-trained body builders; Jiu Jitsu and MMA fighters; arena football, rugby and CrossFit athletes, along with every day men and women. Season one winner Tommy Hackenbruck also returns as the reigning champ, to see if any of the new recruits have what it takes to beat his benchmark Skullbuster time. If the final competitor fails to beat the existing benchmark, Hackenbruck will continue to amass winnings.

Fans can catch up on the full first season of BROKEN SKULL CHALLENGE with a 10-hour marathon on New Year's Eve, Wednesday, December 31 beginning at noon, ET/PT.

The Futon Critic

posted 12/18/14

Nick Hewer Fires Himself
"Apprentice UK" Right Hand to Devote Full Time to "Countdown"
From Telly Mix
Nick Hewer has announced his exit from BBC1 show The Apprentice after a decade as Lord Alan Sugar’s aide.

The PR guru, 70, who has worked as an adviser for entrepreneur Lord Sugar on the popular business program since its’ first season in 2005 said he felt his exit comes at ‘an appropriate time’ as his stamina isn’t quite what it used to be.

He added that his departure comes with ‘relief tinged with regret’. As well as his role on the series, Hewer has worked closely with Sugar since 1983 when he began promoting the Amstrad brand.

His exit was announced as he filmed the final of this year’s series which will air on Sunday night at 9pm. He said tonight, speaking about his exit: ‘I’ve been pondering my departure from The Apprentice for a while and have decided that year 10 is the appropriate time.’

‘I’ve enjoyed being part of this wonderful television series for two reasons: firstly, because it’s been fun and has opened up many unexpected opportunities for me, but more importantly, because I think The Apprentice is a truly valuable program, teaching young people the basics of business – not in a classroom setting, but in a wonderfully entertaining format.’

‘So I leave with relief, tinged with regret. Anyone can do what Karren and I have been doing, but it takes stamina to follow the candidates week after week, and my stamina is not up to those long weeks.’

‘I shall continue to enjoy the show from my armchair, marveling at the candidates’ self-esteem, at the sky-high production values of the producers and at the extraordinary talent of my old friend Alan Sugar.’

As well as his work on The Apprentice, Hewer hosts Channel 4 daytime quiz show Countdown with Rachel Riley.

Tellymix
The Futon Critic

posted 12/18/14

Hell. 15 and 16
Fox Renews for Next Season
From WRAZ Raleigh
FOX has ordered 15th and 16th seasons of the Gordon Ramsay-hosted culinary competition series HELL’S KITCHEN, it was announced today by Dana Walden and Gary Newman, Chairmen and CEOs of Fox Television Group. In the hit cooking series, aspiring chefs are put through an intense culinary academy to prove they possess the right combination of ingredients to win a life-changing grand prize.
“We’ve always been huge fans of Gordon – he’s passionate, authentic and absolutely fearless, and that comes through in everything he does,” said Walden and Newman. “With his massive global brand and his unbelievably loyal fans, Gordon has become one of the biggest names in the culinary world and one of the biggest talents in television – and we’re ecstatic to extend our partnership with him and the incredible team at HELL'S KITCHEN.”

Since its debut in 2005 and 200 episodes later, HELL’S KITCHEN has featured 210 contestants, served more than 15,000 diners and plated thousands of Beef Wellingtons.

WRAZ Raleigh
The Futon Critic

posted 12/18/14

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "The Show Is Over"

  • Alfonso Ribeiro goes from "Dancing" to "Unwrapped 2.0" (The Futon Critic)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: the current meets the forthcoming (YouTube)
     
  • LIST ABUSE: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire's suckiest sucks that ever sucked (Tech Times)

posted 12/18/14

Happy Pricemas (Deal Is Over)
CBS Details Daytime Holiday Plans
From TV by the Numbers
CBS, the top-rated Network in Daytime, gets festive this holiday season with themed episodes of LET'S MAKE A DEAL, THE PRICE IS RIGHT, THE YOUNG AND The Restless, The Bold AND THE BEAUTIFUL and THE TALK.

Kids will take over the Daytime Emmy Award-winning game show LET’S MAKE A DEAL with a special family Christmas episode on Wednesday, Dec. 24 (check local listings). Children ages 8-17 bring their parents to make crazy one-of-a-kind deals and celebrate the season with amazing prizes from everyone’s wish list. From an outdoor movie theater and brand-new cars to family trips to Hawaii and Alaska, there’s enough holiday cheer to make Santa’s elves jealous. The stage will be transformed into a winter wonderland with holiday décor, including lights, wreaths, Christmas trees, presents, candy canes, elves, reindeer, snowmen and Traders dressed as Santa. Plus, every audience member (naughty or nice) gets an early gift – a high-tech Bluetooth speaker and an iPod Shuffle for playing their favorite holiday tunes. Host Wayne Brady and the cast will also dazzle the audience with a holiday mash-up of traditional carols and unexpected twists in the popular Juke Box Game.

Daytime Emmy Award-winning game show THE PRICE IS RIGHT, network television's #1-rated daytime series and the longest-running game show in television history, is celebrating the holiday season with three festive episodes, Monday, Dec. 22 – Wednesday, Dec. 24 (11:00-12:00 Noon, ET; 10:00-11:00 AM, PT). ‘Tis the season for giving gifts and THE PRICE IS RIGHT is serving up some special prizes. Over the three episodes, contestants will have the opportunity to win new luxury cars, including a brand-new Lexus and a Mercedes SUV. Plus, winter is the perfect time to travel. Up for grabs are tropical getaways to the Bahamas and Bora Bora and spectacular vacations to Paris, Australia and Peru, and for those who prefer a more traditional holiday trip, Germany to enjoy the famous Christmas markets. On New Year’s Eve, the show will close out the year with the “Best of 2014,” revisiting some of the greatest moments, wildest contestants and most popular prizes from the past year, Wednesday, Dec. 31 (11:00-12:00 Noon, ET; 10:00-11:00 AM, PT).

TV by the Numbers
Broadway World

posted 12/17/14

Here We Go A-Tattoo-ing
Spike Lines Up 2 Holiday Special
From the Futon Critic
Spike TV's hit original and the first tattoo reality-competition series "Ink Master" is getting in the festive spirit with two holiday-themed specials, 'Merry Ink' and 'New Year's Ink.' Each special brings back well-known "Ink Master" alumni to compete and design holiday-inspired tattoos to win a grand prize of $10,000, which is awarded at the end of the episodes. Every drop of ink counts, there are no flash challenges on these episodes and after every round, one artist is eliminated from their chance at "Ink Master" redemption.

'Merry Ink,' (#MerryInk) airing on Tuesday, December 23 at 10pm ET/PT brings back four contestants who fell just short of winning the 'Ink Master' title during their respective seasons. Though each artist performed phenomenal tattoos, they were told to pack up their equipment and close up shop. They are all returning with something to prove, that they should have been chosen "Ink Master." In a crazy twist, the artists will tattoo the same group of human canvases throughout the competition. The canvases, who are hoping to get several holiday themed tattoos, face elimination alongside their artists at the end of each round. The artists competing in this episode are James Vaughn (season one), Tatu Baby (season two and three), Jime Litwalk (season three) and Sausage (season 4).

'New Year's Ink,' (#NewYearsInk) airing on Tuesday, December 30 at 10pm ET/PT sees the return of four contestants who each had extraordinary circumstances that lead to their dramatic eliminations. These artists are looking to put the past behind and start out fresh with a 'new year.' The artists competing in this episode are Al Fliction (season one), Cee Jay Jones (season two), Joshua Hibbard (season three and five) and Gentle Jay (season four).

These two holiday-themed specials are designed to not only test the artists technical skills, but also their interpersonal skills and on-the-spot creativity, where they must create and execute an original tattoo on a 'Human Canvas.' After each round, the artists will face a tough panel made up of series host Dave Navarro (Jane's Addiction) and world renowned tattoo artists Chris Nunez ("Miami Ink") and Oliver Peck (Elm Street Tattoo). The holiday masterpieces or mistakes these artists create will last a lifetime.

The Futon Critic

posted 12/17/14

On the Third Day of Christmas...
ABC Gave to Me Another Season
From the Futon Critic
The Christmas combat continues! ABC has announced the series renewal from FremantleMedia North America. "The Great Christmas Light Fight" will be returning for a third installment of six episodes next holiday season, where the displays will continue to dazzle, and families from across the country will compete for prize money, a trophy, and bragging rights.

Commented Jennifer Mullin, SVP, Current Programming, FremantleMedia North America and Executive Producer, "The Great Christmas Light Fight," "seeing nearly seven million viewers tune in for our second season opener was truly incredible. We are delighted to embark on this journey of lights again in 2015 and look forward to making 'The Great Christmas Light Fight' a holiday tradition on ABC."

"The Great Christmas Light Fight" first debuted on ABC in December 2013 and continued in 2014, increasing the field from 20 to 24 participating families. The families were chosen through an extensive nationwide search, based on their previous elaborate Christmas light displays, incredible choreography and over-the-top designs. On its second season premiere (on 12/08/14), "The Great Christmas Light Fight" jumped year to year by 24% in Total Viewers (6.8 million vs. 5.5 million) and by 21% in Adults 18-49 (1.7/5 vs. 1.4/4) for the program's best numbers ever. The ABC unscripted program has been up year to year on both telecasts this season.

Casting is already underway for season 3 of "The Great Christmas Light Fight," please go to ABC.com for more information on how to apply to be entered in the competition.

The Futon Critic

posted 12/17/14

Tuesday: Finale Tuesday
"The Voice" Ends on a High Note, but CBS Takes the Win
From the Futon Critic
NBC (10.094 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.6, #1) was the demo champ on Tuesday thanks to "Elf: Buddy's Magic Christmas" (4.867 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6) and the two-hour season finale of "The Voice" (12.707 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 3.2, #1).

CBS (13.331 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.8, #2) then took home the silver with its fall finales from "NCIS" (17.214 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #2), "NCIS: New Orleans" (13.959 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.9, #3) and "Person of Interest" (8.821 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6).

Next up was ABC (4.426 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T3) and its repeat lineup of "A Charlie Brown Christmas" (6.258 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T4), "Disney Prep & Landing" (4.184 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6), "Disney Prep & Landing 2: Naughty vs. Nice" (3.617 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.2, #9) and "Forever" (3.120 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.7, #11).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.733 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T3) served up a new "MasterChef Junior" (5.546 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T4) alongside repeats of "New Girl" (2.187 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #10) and "The Mindy Project" (1.654 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.6, #12).

And finally, second runs of "The Flash" (1.734 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #13) and "Supernatural" (1.265 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.4, #14) on The CW (1.499 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5) closed out the evening.

"Ink Master's" season finale aired live to 1.673 million. "Chopped" scored 1.163 million. "@midnight" has 599,000. Results for "The Chase" forthcoming.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily
TV by the Numbers

posted 12/17/14

More on "Restaurant Startup" Season 2
Catch It on CNBC January 13
From the Futon Critic
CNBC today announced the 20 culinary entrepreneurs who will compete for an investment on Season Two of "Restaurant Startup," premiering Tuesday, January 13 at 10PM ET/PT. Produced by Shine America, the ten one-hour episodes feature restaurateur and TV personality Joe Bastianich and chef and restaurateur Tim Love who vie to invest their own money in restaurant concepts they believe could make them millions. Joining them this season is chef, restaurateur and TV personality, Antonia Lofaso, who will help guide the hungry entrepreneurs as they are put to the ultimate test: opening a restaurant!

This season features exciting new concepts, inventive cooking techniques, and, for the first time, specially themed episodes - including chefs striving to overcome personal setbacks, struggling businesses desperate to change locations, and established restaurants looking to launch a second location, among others.

The Futon Critic

posted 12/17/14

Biggest Loser: The Postseason Preview
Season Finale: January 29
From the Futon Critic
The previously announced Kauai episodes conclude on New Year's Day, January 1 (8-9 p.m. ET), with contestants celebrating the New Year by facing their fears, island-style, and competing in a fun, Lacrosse-inspired challenge before returning to the ranch for a red-line elimination.

Then it's time for one of the most eagerly anticipated events of the season - the fan favorite makeover episode airing Thursday, January 8 (8-9 p.m. ET). Fashion expert Tim Gunn and celebrity hair stylist Ken Paves return to create amazing, inspirational transformations with the four remaining ranch contestants and the two eliminated players at Comeback Canyon. After the ranch contestants get incredible new looks, they are reunited with their loved ones on a downtown rooftop overlooking Los Angeles. It's a magical night that also features a surprise live performance from Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Gavin DeGraw, performing his hit single, "Fire."

Meanwhile, the made-over Comeback Canyon contestants are treated to emotional reunions with their loved ones separately, 15 weeks after leaving home. And the stakes have never been higher at Comeback Canyon, because this week's weigh-in winner will be the one making a surprise return to the ranch with trainer Bob Harper, and securing a spot as a finalist.

The long-awaited episode on January 15 (8-9 p.m. ET) marks Bob's stunning return to the ranch with his Comeback Canyon player, ready to re-join the competition. It's a game-changing surprise for the ranch contestants, who don't know Comeback Canyon exists or that Bob is even part of the current season. The four contestants left are excited to see their former teammate again, but fiercely determined to stay in the competition.

The "Today" show's lifestyle and fitness correspondent, Jenna Wolfe, shares her passion for fitness as a guest trainer on January 22 (8-9 p.m. ET), putting the contestants through an intense workout during their final week on the ranch. Then contestants watch heartwarming journey packages with their trainers and see just how far they've come since stepping on the ranch over four months earlier. Later, at a weigh-in where the stakes are higher than ever, the final four become the final three.

Finally, on January 29, in a special two-hour, live finale from 8-10 p.m. ET, all of the former athletes who made up the season 16 cast return to weigh-in one last time. Those who have been eliminated will compete for the $100,000 "at home" prize. Then it's the moment viewers have been waiting for, when one of the three finalists will be named this season's "Biggest Loser" and win the coveted grand prize of $250,000.

The Futon Critic

posted 12/17/14

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "So You Think You Can Audition"

  • CASTING COUCH: So You Think You Can Dance hits the floor... and the road January 24 (TV by the Numbers)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: Easy question. Low money. Wrong answer (Time)
     
  • Craig Ferguson going to the Sands (Allentown Morning Call)

posted 12/17/14

Syndies: Week 11
Results for the Week Ending December 7
From B&C
As the November sweep wound down and TV entered the holiday season, access magazines continued to get a boost from the unfolding Bill Cosby scandal, in which at least two dozen women have come forward to accuse the former TV icon of sexual assault.

In the week ending Dec. 7, CTD’s Wheel of Fortune rolled to a 7.1, up 16% from the prior week but down 3% from last year at this time. Wheel was syndication’s overall household leader for the week. CTD’s Jeopardy! zoomed up 21% for the week and 11% from last year to a 6.8. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud finished 16% higher for the week and 34% for the year to a 5.9. Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire was flat at a 1.8, and down 18% from the same week last year.

Among the rookies, CTD’s now-renewed Hot Bench continued to set the pace with a 7% gain to a 1.6 in households. Hot Bench tied for first with Warner Bros.’ The Real among women 25-54 at a 0.8. NBCU’s Meredith Vieira, also renewed for season two, held steady at a 1.2, tying Debmar-Mercury’s unchanged Celebrity Name Game. The Real recovered 11% from its season low in the prior week to hit a 1.0, where it’s been for nine of the past ten weeks. Trifecta’s Judge Faith regained 17% to a 0.7.

B&C
TV Newscheck
TV by the Numbers

posted 12/16/14

Half a Dozen Inks
Spike Renews Tattoo Competition for Season Six
From the Futon Critic
On the eve of the LIVE "Ink Master" season 5 finale later tonight (Tuesday, December 16 from 10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT), Spike TV is announcing it has picked up a sixth season of the network's hit original tattoo-competition series.

"Ink Master," currently delivering an average of 2.1 million viewers for Season 5, is on pace for its most-watched season in franchise history. The new season, featuring 13 one-hour episodes, goes into production early next year and will debut in the summer of 2015. Season 6 will have a special twist as mentors will square off against their apprentices.

The announcement was made today by Sharon Levy, Executive Vice President, Original Series, Spike TV.

"Ink Master" is once again proving to be a ratings driver for the network and has improved the timeslot in Adults 18-49 by 38% and 41% in Adults 18-34. The series is 47% male, demonstrating the network's ongoing plan to deliver gender-balanced original hit series.

"Ink Master is indicative of the distinctive, compelling, gender-balanced original programming that features big stakes," said Levy. "We are thrilled to once again partner with Original Media and our incredible hosting/judging trio of Dave Navarro, Oliver Peck, and Chris Nunez for another great season."

The Futon Critic

posted 12/16/14

Monday: Loud Voice
NBC Sweeps the Night
From the Futon Critic
NBC (10.274 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) continued its winning ways on Monday with the penultimate night of "The Voice" (12.167 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.9, #1) followed by a new "State of Affairs" (6.487 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T5).

CBS (9.065 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.8, #2) then took home the silver with its mix of "2 Broke Girls" (7.833 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.1, #2), "Mike & Molly" (7.872 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.8, #4), "Scorpion" (9.890 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.0, #3) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (9.453 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T5).

Next up was ABC (5.731 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.4, #3) with originals from "The Great Christmas Light Fight" (6.013 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.4, #8), another "The Great Christmas Light Fight" (5.994 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.5, #7) and a repeat "Castle" (5.188 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.1, #9).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.391 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.9, #4) offered up its inaugural "American Country Countdown Awards" (3.391 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.9, #10).

And finally, the return of "Hart of Dixie" (1.197 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.4, #12) and the fall finale of "Jane the Virgin" (1.272 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #11) closed out the evening on The CW (1.234 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5).

"@midnight" raked in 612,000.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 12/16/14

Weekend: Closing In
CBS, ABC Split Night
From the Wrap
ABC (6.133 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #1) was the top demo draw on Friday with its mix of "Last Man Standing" (6.040 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T6), "Cristela" (4.540 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.8, #10), "Shark Tank" (7.004 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.5, #1) and "20/20" (6.108 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.4, #2).

NBC (5.179 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #2) then was a close second place with its trio of "Dateline NBC" (7.189 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T3), "Grimm" (5.054 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T3) and "Constantine" (3.295 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.0, #9).

Next up was CBS (8.597 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.1, #3) who was also in the hunt with "The Amazing Race" (5.943 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T6), "Hawaii Five-0" (8.738 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T6) and "Blue Bloods" (11.110 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.2, #5).

Meanwhile, FOX (1.758 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.6, #4) served up a repeat "MasterChef Junior" (1.694 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T11) followed by another "MasterChef Junior" (1.822 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T11).

And finally, an encore of "The Librarians" (1.556 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13) and a second "The Librarians" (1.561 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13) encore on The CW (1.558 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the evening.

"Deal With It" scored 657,000 for its 9p airing. "The Ultimate Fighter: The Ultimate Finale" had its worst faring with 989,000.

On Sunday, Food Network's offerings fared thusly:

- 8p: Guy's Grocery Games: 1.356 million
- 9p: Holiday Baking Championship (season finale): 1.859 million
- 10p: Cutthroat Kitchen: 1.277 million

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily
TV by the Numbers

posted 12/15/14

"Monopoly Millionaires Club" Game Goes to Jail
Goes Directly to Jail. Do Not Pass Go. Do Not Collect $200.
From Inquitistr
The nation’s newest lottery game, Monopoly Millionaires Club, barely passed “Go.” The multi-state game, which began on October 19, will become a thing of the past before the year is out with the day after Christmas now designated as the final day Monopoly Millionaires Club tickets will be sold.

Why are lottery officials in 22 states and Washington D.C. pulling the plug on the new lottery game already? Simple. The game just isn’t selling enough tickets.

“Sales for the game have not met the lottery industry’s projections and have continued to decline nationally since its introduction,” said Gary Grief, director of the Texas Lottery. “Unfortunately, players have not embraced the game as anticipated, and our options to change the game while it is being sold are limited in scope and challenging to implement.”

The nation’s newest lottery game, Monopoly Millionaires Club, will end December 26, doomed by low sales thanks to small prize amounts and a high ticket price.

In other words, at the rate Monopoly MIllionaires Club was going, the lottery would give out more money in prizes than it took in from ticket sales — obviously an unacceptable situation.

The cancellation leaves just two Monopoly Millionaires Club drawings remaining — December 19 and December 26. Any prizes won in those, and all previous drawings will be paid out, and players will still have the same time period — 180 days in most states — to claim those prizes. The Las Vegas game show, to air in 2015, is not expected to be affected by this cycle.

The Monopoly Millionaires Club lottery got off to a promising start, awarding a $21 million jackpot in only its third-ever drawing. But in the end, players apparently did not want to pay $5 per ticket for a chance at winning no more than $25 million — the maximum amount for the soon-to-be-defunct lottery game’s jackpot.
The two other nationwide lottery games, Mega Millions and Powerball, have accustomed lottery players to jackpots that regularly soar well into the nine-figure range. For that matter, the minimum Powerball jackpot is $40 million, $15 million more than the Monopoly Millionaires Club maximum.

The Mega Millions drawing on Tuesday, December 16, features a jackpot of $133 million. But Mega Millions tickets cost only a buck each, while Powerball tickets sell for $2.

The concept driving Monopoly Millionaires Club was not the top jackpot, however, but the $1 million second prize, which would be given out to more players than in either Mega Millions or Powerball. But in today’s lottery market, a flat $1 million prize failed to fire the imaginations of lottery enthusiasts.

“Lotteries developed the Monopoly Millionaires Club game concept based on feedback from players across the nation who desired a game with the potential to make many people millionaires rather than just one person winning many millions,” said Alice Garland, director of the North Carolina lottery.

But that concept, plus a complicated set of rules, appears to be what doomed the Monopoly Millionaires Club. Lottery officials say that the game could return in 2015 with a new set of rules designed to make the game more attractive.

Inquisitr
nwitimes.com

posted 12/16/14

Brazil is The People's Choice
Globo Picks Up Format
From Realscreen
Brazilian network Globo has picked up the live game show format The People’s Choice (pictured) from Tel Aviv-based Armoza Formats.

The channel will begin airing a 13-episode season of the series during primetime next year.

The format was developed by Armoza and TF1 and is based on a series of dilemmas such as, would viewers prefer to go a week without showering or a week without a smartphone? Viewers at home then cast votes and contestants in the studio must guess the decision they chose in order to win cash prizes.

Armoza launched the format at MIPCOM earlier this year and has since sold it to broadcasters in Germany, Italy, Sweden, Turkey, Thailand and Vietnam.

“The Lat Am region, and Brazil in particular, is one of our key focuses for 2015 and we are proud to be extending our reach there,” said Armoza CEO Avi Armoza in a statement. “The show revolves around a very strong but simple idea of being able to compare ourselves to each other and seeing how well we know our nation, creating a live TV event with ultimate buzzworthy discussions.”

Realscree

posted 12/16/14

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "Terry Gets Another Gig"

  • Terry Crews FAILS... for Fox (The Futon Critic)
     
  • The email that almost got Alex Trebek to quit (Page Six)
     
  • Coke no longer enjoys "American Idol" (Variety)
     
  • FIRST LOOK: The Challenge: Rivals II (MTV, January 6) (Buzzfeed)
     
  • In one article, everything wrong with cable news in 2014 (TV Newser)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Robin Ashbrook (TV Guide

posted 12/16/14


One Night Only
"Idol" Cuts Results Show
From the Wrap
“American Idol” isn’t going to make its viewers wait a day to find out who’s eliminated during its Top 10 portion of its upcoming 14th season.

Host Ryan Seacrest revealed the format change on Friday’s Z100 Jingle Ball red carpet.

“[It will be] one night when we get to the final stage, the Top 10, there will be one night of performances and results all in one night,” Seacrest told THR.

The move takes a page from ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” playbook, which consolidated much of its season to one night as ratings began to fall for the show ahead of its 17th season last year.

“So there won’t be a ‘wait ‘til tomorrow night.’ There won’t be a ‘Coming up, coming up, coming up.’ We are going to put it all into one format in one night. So that will be exciting,” Seacrest also said.

Fox representatives didn’t immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment.
“American Idol” went through an intense period of changes in 2013, including firing longtime executive producers Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick in its continuing bid to win back viewers and shake up the show.

For its upcoming season, original judge-turned-mentor Randy Jackson had decided not to return. In the mentoring slot, “Idol” brought in president and chief executive of the Big Machine Label Group, Scott Borchetta, as Jackson’s replacement.

Judges Keith Urban, Harry Connick Jr., and Jennifer Lopez will be back for the show’s Season 14, which will premiere Wednesday, Jan. 7. at 8 p.m.

The Wrap
TV by the Numbers
The Hollywood Reporter

posted 12/15/14

HGTV Team with Ellen DeGeneres
Catch "Design Challenge" January 26
From Broadway World
Ellen's Design Challenge, HGTV's new furniture competition series-conceptualized by television icon and entertainment pioneer Ellen DeGeneres-is set to premiere Monday, January 26, at 9 p.m. ET/PT. The six-episode series, Ellen's first on cable television, will feature six competitors as they tackle ingenious challenges to sketch, design and build extraordinary furniture. Produced by Ellen's production company, A Very Good Production, and A. Smith & Co. in association with Telepictures, the competition series requires that contestants create inventive furniture designs to avoid elimination. The last competitor standing receives a $100,000 cash prize courtesy of Wayfair.com and gets to see their work featured in HGTV Magazine.

"I realized when I had my name on the show that I could change the rules," said Ellen. "Plus, I love furniture and I love television, so to put furniture on television is a win-win."

"Ellen's incomparable style and sense of humor adds a special element to this series," said Kathleen Finch, president, HGTV and DIY Network. "Our team is excited to share this fun, fresh, twist on the traditional design competition with viewers."

"I am most excited about seeing the furniture and then stealing it for my home," laughed Ellen.

Television personality Jay Montepare will serve as the series' host, while Amanda Dameron, editor-in-chief of Dwell, and Christiane Lemieux, executive creative director of Wayfair.com, will participate as judges in the competition. The six competitors include Carley Eisenberg, Boone, N.C.; Gaspar de Jesus, Los Angeles; Tim McClellan, Durango, Colo.; Mark Moskovitz, Cleveland, Ohio; Leslie Shapiro Joyal, Los Angeles; and Katie Stout, Brooklyn, N.Y.

Ellen's Design Challenge will highlight Ellen's passion for furniture and house design, as well as her expertise in the subject. The competitors will face design challenges that will keep them on their toes and, since the clock will be ticking, they will be paired with an expert carpenter to help them complete the task at hand, including Karl Champley, Jeff Devlin, Matt Muenster, David Sheinkopf, Brooks Utley and Chip Wade. In addition, each designer will have access to a "build team" and a large workshop with all the tools they'll need to measure and construct their amazing furniture creations.

Broadway World

posted 12/15/14

"Name Game" Reportedly Closing In on Renewal
New Series Has Performed Consistently Modest.
From TV Week
Two syndicated shows appear likely to receive renewals soon, with Warner Bros.’ panel talk show “The Real” and Debmar Mercury’s “Celebrity Name Game” looking likely to receive second seasons, reports Deadline.com’s Nellie Andreeva.

The renewals would come after a better season overall for new syndicated programs, following a lackluster season last year, the story notes. Two new syndicated shows have already received renewals: NBCU’s “The Meredith Vieira Show” and CTD’s “Hot Bench,” the piece adds.

“During the November sweep, all four syndie rookies that have been renewed or expected to be logged 1.0 rating or above in households. Judge Judy Sheindlin-created and produced court show ‘Hot Bench’ averaged a 1.7, followed by ‘Celebrity Name Game’ (1.3), ‘Meredith Vieira’ (1.2) and ‘The Real’ (1.0),” the piece reports.

Andreeva adds: “Last year, only one first-year syndicated series, ‘Queen Latifah,’ was above 1.0 for the November sweep, at 1.1, followed by ‘Bethenny’ (0.9), ‘Arsenio Hall’ (0.7) and ‘The Test’ (0.6), all canceled by the spring.”

TV Week

posted 12/15/14

Monday Lightning Round
... or "Holiday Side Jobs"

  • John Anderson accepts ABC's Rose.... Parade coverage (The Futon Critic)
     
  • "New Girl" catches a shark... namely Lori Grenier (Entertainment Weekly)
     
  • Iliza Schlesinger goes from "Last Comic Standing" to Netflix (Variety)
     
  • Amanda Byram training to be "a Terminator". Skynet unavailable for comment (Irish Independent)
     
  • Jane Lynch hosts DGA Awards (Variety)
     
  • "And It Goes Something Like This": Wayne Brady brings his one-man show to San Francisco (Broadway World)
     
  • Brandi Cochran's appeal is allowed to proceed (The Hollywood Reporter)
     
  • BRUTALLY HONEST REVIEW: "Release the Hounds" app (iOS) (Trusted Reviews)
     
  • LIST ABUSE: You would probably suck on these kid game shows now... (MTV)
     
  • TV's Craig Ferguson heads to New England's Rhode Island (Broadway World)

posted 12/15/14

Syndies: Week 10
Results for the Week Ending November 30
From B&C
Like their network counterparts, the majority of syndicated shows were flat to slightly lower in the 2014 November sweep.

Among the first-run rookies, CTD’s Hot Bench remained hot in households, averaging a 1.7 for the sweep, up 31% from its September premiere. Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game, which has access clearances in several top 30 markets, posted a 1.3, followed by NBCU’s already renewed Meredith Vieira at a 1.2, Warner Bros.’ The Real at a 1.0 and Trifecta’s Judge Faith at a 0.7.

Among game shows, the biggest gainer was Debmar-Mercury's Steve Harvey-hosted Family Feud, which leaped 19% from last November to a 6.2. CTD’s leader Wheel of Fortune fell 1% to a 7.3. CTD’s Jeopardy! jumped 6% to a 6.9, while Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire faded 10% to a 1.9.

B&C
TV by the Numbers
Deadline

posted 12/12/14

CBS & The NFL vs. Wheel & Jeopardy!
Sony Leak Reaches Top Syndicated Games
From Deadspin
In January, CBS acquired the rights to air NFL Network's Thursday Night Football through the first half of the season. That slate turned out to be some of the worst professional football ever put on television, and it was a financial catastrophe for the Tiffany network.

But prime-time national NFL broadcasts hurt the bottom line elsewhere, too: at Sony Pictures Entertainment, where executives were blindsided just a week before the NFL season kicked off with the news that TNF would be pre-empting two of Sony's most lucrative properties, Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy!, on the dozens of CBS affiliates that air those two game shows.

The details the deal and the seemingly dubious double-cross were archived by Deadspin as a result of the data breach at Sony exposing many internal emails. They describe a Jeopardy! category created to promote the Thursday Night package and a million dollar winner from September's Wheel premiere week moved from Thursday to the less lucrative Wednesday show.

Ratings data show Wheel and Jeopardy! both suffered ratings declines due to the CBS NFL pre-emptions. The worst decline came on October 16th, when the shows were pre-empted for or up against the Jets-Patriots game.

Below is a link to the epistolary story of how CBS tricked Sony into thinking their game shows wouldn't be affected by the NFL, and how Sony even worked with the league to develop a special Jeopardy! category recognizing what turned out to be a ratings-killer. We should warn you that the language gets understandably blue.

Deadspin

posted 12/12/14

Thursday: Fall from Grace
CBS Wins. And It Isn't Even Close.
From The Futon Critic
CBS (10.253 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) was the network to beat on Thursday with its original lineup of "The Big Bang Theory" (15.762 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.0, #1), "Mom" (11.527 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.8, #2), "Two and a Half Men" (10.028 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.5, #3), "The McCarthys" (7.713 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.8, #4) and "Elementary" (8.242 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.6, #5).

FOX (4.737 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T2) then was a distant second place with the fall finale of "Bones" (5.480 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.2, #6) and the conclusion to "Gracepoint" (3.994 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T9).

Sharing the silver was NBC (3.805 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T2) and its mix of "The Biggest Loser" (4.303 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7), "Bad Judge" (3.772 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7), "A to Z" (2.517 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11) and an encore of "Blake Shelton's Not So Family Christmas" (3.967 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T9).

Meanwhile, ABC (2.901 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T4) offered up week two of "The Taste" (3.148 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11) plus a repeat "How to Get Away with Murder" (2.407 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T14).

And finally, The CW (1.610 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T4) closed out the evening with its fall finales from "The Vampire Diaries" (1.795 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11) and "Reign" (1.424 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T14).

On cable, "Project Runway All-Stars" logged in 1.592 million viewers, second to the 10p "Pawnography" with 1.622 million. The 10:30 nightcap had 1.536 million. "Beat Bobby Flay" had 987,000. "@midnight" rounds out the night with 536,000.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers

posted 12/12/14

Spain Gets Decimated
Red Arrow Format Exported
From World Screen
Veralia is set to produce a Spanish adaptation of Decimate, a quiz show format represented by Red Arrow International.

Decimate looks on as a team of three contestants attempt to maintain a wall of money. Each time they answer a question incorrectly, the amount of cash is reduced.

The format was originally created by Hugh Rycroft and co-developed and produced by Red Arrow Entertainment's CPL Productions. It was recently commissioned by the BBC, where a local version will be presented by actor/singer/comedian Shane Richie.

Carlo Boserman, the CEO of Veralia, remarked: "Decimate is the perfect show for a daily slot in Spain, it is a tense and dynamic format that the whole family can enjoy."

Axel Böhm, the senior VP of sales for Europe at Red Arrow International, added: "Decimate is an exciting new quiz show format that keeps viewers on the edge of their seats—we're delighted with this partnership. I'm convinced that Veralia will make an excellent adaptation for Spain!"

World Screen
Broadcast
C21 Media

posted 12/12/14

Happy Friday! Lightning Round
... or "Happy Birthday Bob!"

  • Bob Barker turns 91 (Orlando Sentinel) plus the WGMC through the years (Closer Weekly)
     
  • Nick Cannon hosts People Magazine Awards for NBC (TV by the Numbers)
     
  • You will never be Pat Sajak rapping on ESPN cool (Gawker)
     
  • Another result of the Sony leak, Mark Cuban calling his salary for "Shark Tank" "beyond an insult" (Us)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Survivor's medical team (Entertainment Tonight)

posted 12/12/14

Emma Willis, Reggie Yates "Prized"
Meet the New Stars of the BBC's New Saturday Night Game
From Telly Mix
Emma Willis and Reggie Yates are announced today as the hosts of Prized Apart, BBC One’s brand new, nail-biting Saturday night entertainment show.

Filmed on location abroad and in the UK, the show will feature ten contestants who compete in a range of grueling challenges.

Each week, the bottom placed contestants are flown back to the UK, to a studio hanger where their partners await. The stay-at-home players must keep their loved ones in the competition by answering a set of questions in a head-to-head round against the other partners. If they succeed, their loved ones will get back on the plane to continue the game.

Emma Willis says, “Prized Apart will be nail biting, emotional and full of energy. I’ll be there with the partners in the studio as they watch their loved ones go through their hellish challenges in mystery locations abroad. It should be lots of fun to see how far the contestants will go for their loved ones. I can’t wait to get stuck in.”

Reggie Yates says, “I’m thrilled to be a part of such an exciting and fresh show in Prized Apart with Emma. I’ll be getting to know the adventurers and will be with them every step of the way as they perform the tough challenges. It’s going to be an incredible experience and I can’t wait to get started.”

Charlotte Moore, Controller BBC One says, “Emma and Reggie are the perfect team to host our new game-changing Saturday night adventure show – they will bring heart and emotion both inside the studio and out.”

Prized Apart will air on BBC One in Spring 2015.

The six part series was commissioned by Charlotte Moore, Controller, BBC One and will be executive produced by Electric Ray’s joint managing directors, Karl Warner and Meredith Chambers.

Tellly Mix
Unreality TV

posted 12/11/14

NATPE Gets Real
Breakthrough Awards to Premiere This Year
From World Screen
NATPE 2015 is on pace to see strong attendance from both U.S. and international buyers, exhibitors and general attendees.

There are currently 230 exhibitors confirmed. For the third consecutive year, all of the major U.S. studios are expected to attend, while 28 new exhibitors have registered for their first NATPE. Newcomers hail from the U.S., Canada, Latin America and other international territories, with a notable increase in European attendance hailing from Germany. The exhibition floor and Versailles Tower are completely sold out, with the Tresor, Sorrento and Chateau Towers nearly sold out.

It was previously announced that the conference will feature a new NATPE||Reality day on Tuesday, January 20. Part of this effort includes the first Reality Breakthrough Awards, honoring those reality programs that "broke through the clutter" and "made some noise." The finalists for the five categories have now been unveiled:

COMPETITION:
- American Ninja Warrior (A. Smith & Co. & Tokyo Broadcasting System for NBC)
- Face Off (Mission Control Media for Syfy)
- MasterChef Junior (One Potato Two Potato & Shine America for Fox)
- Shark Tank (UA Media Group & Sony Pictures TV for ABC)
- The Voice (UA Media Group, Warner Horizon TV & Talpa for NBC)

GAME SHOW
- @midnight (Nerdist Industries, Funny or Die, Lennon/Garant Productions & Brillstein Entertainment Partners for Comedy Central
- The Chase (ITV Studios America for GSN)
- Hollywood Game Night (Hazy Mills Productions, Mission Control Media & Universal TV for NBC)
- Jeopardy! (Sony Pictures TV)
- The Price Is Right (FremantleMedia North America for CBS)

World Screen
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 12/11/14

Wednesday: Middle of the Week
CBS, ABC Split Night
From the Futon Critic
ABC (7.307 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #1) pulled into the top spot on Wednesday with the fall finales of "The Middle" (8.091 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T4), "The Goldbergs" (7.399 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T4), "Modern Family" (9.682 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 3.1, #1), "Black-ish" (7.380 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 2.3, #3) and "Nashville" (5.645 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.5, #7).

CBS (8.921 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.0, #2) then was a close second with originals from "Survivor: San Juan del Sur" (9.394 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.4, #2), "Criminal Minds" (10.078 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.1, #6) and "Stalker" (7.290 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8).

Next up was NBC (7.172 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.4, #3) and its lineup of "The Mysteries of Laura" (8.029 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.2, #12), "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (6.855 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8) and "Chicago PD" (6.634 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.555 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #4) offered up a new "Hell's Kitchen" (3.798 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.3, #11) followed by a second "Hell's Kitchen" (3.311 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.1, #13).

And finally, the fall finale of "Arrow" (3.041 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 1.0, #14) and a new "The 100" (1.669 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.6, #15) closed out the evening on The CW (2.355 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.8, #5).

It was a very atypical night in cable, as the top demo draw was Comedy Central's "@midnight" with 650,000 viewers. "Top Chef" had a consistent 979,000 to "Kitchen Inferno's" 594,000. "The Ultimate Fighter" knocked out 508,000.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 12/11/14

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "Same Old Song & Dance"

  • Mary Murphy is looking for an exit from SYTYCD. This is not a repeat from always (Deadline)
     
  • MTV's New Year's party will offer the first look of "Broke A$$ Game Show" (E!)
     
  • ICYMI: Seth Rogen & James Franco say "Season's Greetings" (Cinema Blend)
     
  • Regis & Joy Philbin to play Foxwoods (Springfield Republican)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Chris Hardwick (San Francisco Chronicle) and Jeff Foxworthy (Las Vegas Sun)

posted 12/11/14


MARY ANN MOBLEY: 1937-2014
Miss America, Actress Game Show Frequenter
From the Hollywood Reporter
Mary Ann Mobley, the dark-haired and wholesome Miss America who went on to a successful acting career highlighted by two starring turns opposite Elvis Presley, has died. She was 77.

Mobley, who was married to the late actor and TV host Gary Collins, died Tuesday morning in her Beverly Hills home after a battle with breast cancer, execs with Warner Bros. Television confirmed. One of her daughters, Clancy Collins White, is senior vp drama development at the company.

A native of Brandon, Miss., who attended the University of Mississippi, Mobley won the Miss America pageant in 1959, studied acting with Lee Strasberg, appeared in an L.A. production of Guys and Dolls and signed a five-year contract with MGM.

She first attracted attention on the small screen when she appeared on a 1963 episode of Aaron Spelling’s Burke’s Law, which producers loved to populate with beautiful women making a fuss over suave star Gene Barry.

In 1965, the Golden Globes named her Most Promising Newcomer, an award Mobley shared with Mia Farrow and Celia Milius.

After her character dated Presley’s in Girl Happy (1965), she reteamed with her fellow Mississippian later in the year in Harum Scarum, in which she starred as a slave girl who is actually the daughter of a king in the Middle East.

Mobley’s film résumé also includes Get Yourself a College Girl (1964), Young Dillinger (1965), Jerry Lewis’ Three on a Couch (1966), The King’s Pirate (1967), The Legend of Custer (1968) and For Singles Only (1968).

Mobley was among the few Miss America winners to forge a career in show business; the list also includes Lee Meriwether, Phyllis George, Bess Myerson and Vanessa Williams. (When she won, the second runner-up was Miss Oklahoma, Anita Bryant.)

Mobley replaced Dixie Carter as Maggie McKinney, who goes on to marry Conrad Bain’s character, for the final season of the NBC-ABC series Diff’rent Strokes in 1985-86.

Mobley also appeared on such shows as Perry Mason, Love, American Style, Fantasy Island, Ironside, Falcon Crest, The Partridge Family and Vega$ and was a recurring celebrity panelist on the game show Match Game. She also played Password, Body Language, Family Feud, Card Sharks, To Tell The Truth and Tattletales.

She traveled to Cambodia, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Somalia, Kenya, Zimbabwe and the Sudan for documentaries meant to show the plight of homeless and starving children.

“The University of Mississippi family is saddened by the passing of Mary Ann Mobley Collins,” said a statement released by Ole Miss.

Mobley wed Collins in 1967 (it was his second marriage) after they were introduced on the set of Three on a Couch, and they had a daughter. He died in 2012.

The Hollywood Reporter
Variety
Deadline
Yahoo!/AP
AV Club

photo courtesy Speakerpedia

posted 12/10/14

Tuesday: Chasing Another Season Record
Last Night's Show Posts Over 700,000
From TV Media Insights
With just one episode left in the current third cycle, ratings for GSN’s “The Chase” keeps on rising. For its 8 p.m. telecast on Tuesday, December 9, “The Chase” drew an audience of 743,000 total viewers and 166,000 adults 18-49, according to live plus same day final national data from Nielsen.

Comparably, this is the largest total audience for a single telecast of the game show since its second season finale (818,000 viewers on Feb. 4, 2014).

An encore telecast of “The Chase” at 11 p.m. on Dec. 9 delivered 319,000 total viewers and 86,000 adults 18-49.

Also of significant note, a rerun episode of “Family Feud” hosted by Steve Harvey at 7:30 p.m. (leading into “The Chase”) averaged 901,000 viewers and 212,000 adults 18-49.

Elsewhere on cable, "Chopped" led over "Ink Master", 1.622 million to 1.318 million.

On broadcast,  CBS (10.004 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.6, #1) claimed top demo and total viewer honors on Tuesday with its mix of "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" (10.669 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.8, #2) and "NCIS" (10.223 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T4) encores plus "Victoria's Secret Fashion Show" (9.119 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 3.3, #1).

NBC (6.638 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2) then claimed the silver with its lineup of "The Voice" (10.870 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #3), "Marry Me" (4.858 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T9), "About a Boy" (3.732 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.9, #15) and "Angelina Jolie: Unbroken" (4.749 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.0, #14).

Next up was FOX (3.905 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2) with originals from "MasterChef Junior" (4.884 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.6, #6), "New Girl" (3.290 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T7) and "The Mindy Project" (2.560 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T9).

Meanwhile, ABC (4.849 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T4) served up a repeat "Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town" (4.179 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T11) alongside the fall finales of "Marvel's Agents of SHIELD" (5.224 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T4) and "Forever" (5.144 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T11).

And finally, The CW (3.671 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T4) closed out the evening with its own fall finales from "The Flash" (4.534 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T7) and "Supernatural" (2.808 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T11).

TV Media Insights
Showbuzz Daily
The Futon Critic

posted 12/10/14

BBC's Mud Run
Wookie Ford, Jonny Smith Host Competition January 26
From the Futon Critic
BBC AMERICA's Mud, Sweat and Gears is a brand new competitive car show which hurtles onto screens in the New Year. Each week hosts Tom 'Wookie' Ford and Jonny Smith captain a team of two car nuts and go head-to-head to transform everyday vehicles. They have 24 hours to mutate, supersize and reconstruct - once transformed, the vehicles are raced in three extreme missions involving head-to-head sprints, timed challenges and stunts, lots of stunts. The missions are daring, adventurous, fun, and competitive - and all tied to different episode themes rolling out each week. Mud, Sweat and Gears premieres Monday, January 26 at 10:00pm ET on BBC AMERICA.

The first episode is filmed in an almost abandoned, decaying LA cityscape. The series opens with the two teams making the ultimate cop cars. Jonny is joined by two hot-rodding brothers from Detroit and, in a possibly foolhardy homage to 1970's British police dramas, Jonny chooses to start with a Jaguar. Wookie picks a Pontiac Firebird - like the model used in the movie Smokey & The Bandit - for his team, as they turn the ultimate outlaw car into a cop car. The teams get to work, welding, adding air rams, battering rams and mobile jail cells, before competing in three crazy cops and robbers challenges of increasing scale and difficulty, putting their creations to the ultimate test. Once the winner is declared, the loser's car gets annihilated.

From here episodes go on to explore creating video game cars, trucks of war, cars fit for our very own Olympics, high-speed delivery vehicles, off-road machines, spy cars full of gadgets, end of the world survival vehicles, and mightily destructive demolition vehicles.

Nathaniel Grouille is executive producer and showrunner for the series and Trice Barto is executive producer. Ricky Kelehar is executive producer for BBC AMERICA, Michael Brooks and Jane Tranter are executive producers for BBC Worldwide Productions and Julie Swanston for BBC Worldwide. The production was filmed in California.

The Futon Critic

posted 12/10/14

Underground Cake Battle!
"Duff Till Dawn" Launches on Food Network January 29
From TV by the Numbers
When the sun sets, the ultimate underground cake competition begins on new series Duff Till Dawn, premiering on Thursday, January 29th at 10:30pm ET/PT on Food Network. Host Duff Goldman's bakery becomes a battleground after hours for two talented teams of cake decorators, as their skills and creativity are tested with challenges and twists to create the most outstanding and over-the-top cakes. Competitors must amaze rotating judges Haylie Duff (Real Girl's Kitchen), Elena Fox (Ace of Cakes), Carrie Keagan (Television Personality), Geof Manthorne (Ace of Cakes), Catherine McCord (Guy's Grocery Games), Alysia Reiner (Actress), Kelis Rogers (Musician and Host of Holiday Feast with Kelis), Aarti Sequeiria (Aarti Party), Kevin Smith (Writer/Director) and Sherry Yard (Cutthroat Kitchen) with the boldest, tastiest and most impressive cakes for the chance to win bragging rights and the coveted golden whisk.

"The one-of-a-kind Duff Goldman is the master of dazzling and astonishing cakes," said Bob Tuschman, General Manager and Senior Vice President Programming, Food Network. "In Duff Till Dawn, he tests the bakers on these same talents and abilities, as well as their ability to pull all-nighters."

The competition is anything but sweet in this six-episode series. In each episode, two new teams must outdo their competition with their special talents and original cake creations before sunrise, when only one will be crowned the winner. It is complete monster mayhem in one challenge, as the bakers race to make their creations come to life. In another episode, one team will sink and the other will swim, as they create their dream ships out of cake. Is it all smooth sailing, or are the teams headed for troubled waters? It is blast off into outer space in another challenge, where the teams must aim for the stars with gravity defying confections. In another enchanting episode, the decorators delve into the land of make believe as they are challenged to make magical fairy cakes. It is a Castle clash in another challenge, where the bakers must joust for the golden whisk. Which team's medieval manor will take the cake in this gauntlet?

Throughout the season, fans can meet The Bold pro-bakers, see photos of their fierce cake creations, and much more at FoodNetwork.com/DuffTillDawn. Fans can also tweet about the overnight battle using the hashtag #DuffTillDawn.

TV by the Numbers

posted 12/10/14

La Voz Plays Daddy
Daddy Yankee Joins Show as Coach
From TV by the Numbers
Telemundo announces that international music star Daddy Yankee, known as “The Most Relevant Latin Urban Artist in the World,” is joining the third season of the highly-rated singing competition "La Voz Kids," as one of the Coaches on the new season slated to premiere next spring. He will take the coaches chair on the Sunday night show alongside previously announced returning Coach Natalia Jimenez. The Puerto Rican born singer will share his extensive expertise with a team of young talented participants on the “La Voz Kids” stage at Universal Orlando Resort. Following the success of the first two seasons, the reality competition series allows viewers to witness how the voices of the future generations are discovered and developed, as young vocalists between the ages of seven and fifteen years old, compete for a recording contract and a cash prize to support their education.

“Joining the third season of La Voz Kids as a Coach is an honor and it signifies so much to me as an artist since I truly want to help and mentor the new generation of young singers with big dreams in life,” said Daddy Yankee. “With DY in the house, I will make sure my team wins this new season,” he concluded.

Daddy Yankee marked another milestone in his career as a Latin urban artist with the release of his digital-only album titled “King Daddy,” debuting #1 on iTunes in its first day of release. Ten years after “Barrio Fino” became the top-selling Latin urban album of all time and “Gasolina” single-handedly launched reggaetón to the world, he continues to be the most influential and recognizable name in the music industry with over 11 million albums sold and more than 36 million fans throughout his social media networks. Named as one of the most influential Hispanics in the world by both CNN and Time Magazine, Yankee continued his trailblazing path with the release of his own video game in 2013, a world tour in 2014 that included Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. His growing business empire includes his own production house El Cartel Records, his award-winning Los Cangris Music Publishing, and the film company that produced “Talento de Barrio,” starring himself. The film’s soundtrack, sold over 1 million copies worldwide and reached No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Latin Album charts, with the single “Pose” also hitting No. 1 on the Hot Latin Songs chart.

TV by the Numbers

posted 12/10/14

Upgrading Asia
Armoza Sells Format
From C21 Media
Two production outfits in Asia are developing local versions of an Israeli home improvement gameshow format for Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar.

Content Lab, part of Bangkok-based JSL Global Media Group, has picked up rights to Upgrade from distributor Armoza Formats and is now pitching it to broadcasters in Thailand.

Meanwhile, the recently launched Asian production arm of French producer and distributor Lagardère Entertainment has taken the rights to the gameshow for Vietnam and Myanmar.

Chinese state broadcaster CCTV has already aired three seasons of its version of the show, which sees a celebrity offer to replace a family’s belongings with better items by asking a series of questions. If they answer incorrectly, however, the family risks losing the belongings they own.

Created by Saar Brodsky, Rodrigo Gonzales and Gilli Golan and developed by Armoza Formats and Tanin Productions, the show has now aired in 18 territories, including Norway, Russia and Denmark.

C21 Media

posted 12/10/14

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "We Can Rebuild It"

  • Alfonso Ribeiro to makeover an entire town for Think Factory (Deadline)
     
  • Fox wants Simon Cowell back (The Hollywood Reporter)
     
  • LIST ABUSE: "Idol" makes the list of 12 shows we gave up on in 2014 (Buzzfeed); "Harry" makes the list of worst TV moments in 2014 (Rolling Stone)
     
  • Angelea Preston sues CW, Tyra Banks for breach of contract in "Top Model" expulsion. And with a price tag of $3 million, we're just negotiating price now for this former escort. (The Wrap)

posted 12/10/14

"Fake Off" Back On
truTV Renews Freshman Series for 2015
From TV by the Numbers
The truTV programming evolution is kicking into high gear, with a packed slate of series renewals, greenlights and more. Headlining the renewals, truTV has ordered a second seasons of its eye-popping performance competition series Fake Off.

"Building on the success and momentum of recent premieres, we are continuing to take big swings in new spaces with original series that are innovative, surprising and irresistibly shareable." said Chris Linn, president, head of programming for truTV. "We are delivering on our promise to make compelling shows that have a voice and take you to unique places. We look forward to working with our new and returning production partners as we set out to take fun to a whole new level."

In the second season of Fake Off a whole new collection of performers from around the country will take the stage to compete in the captivating art of Faking. In this series teams ultilize a mix of theater, acrobatics, black light and illusion to reimagine iconic moments in pop culture and see who’s got the skills to be named America's best Fakers. Fake Off has earned high praise from television critics and viewers alike, which has helped expand its audience by +37% since its premiere.

truTV has ordered eight one-hour episodes for the second season of Fake Off, which is being produced by Shine America. The season is slated to launch Spring 2015.

No decision has been made regarding quizzer "Hair Jacked".

TV by the Numbers
Variety

posted 12/9/14

Monday: Out of the Loops
"The Voice" Semis Take NBC to 1st
From The Futon Critic
NBC (9.183 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) was still the network to beat on Monday with its duo of "The Voice" (10.638 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.5, #1) and "State of Affairs" (6.274 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T8).

The silver then went to CBS (8.765 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.9, #2) and its lineup of "2 Broke Girls" (7.739 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.0, #T3), the return of "Mike & Molly" (7.946 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.8, #T5), "Scorpion" (9.911 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #2) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (8.544 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T8).

Next up was ABC (7.772 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.8, #3) with the season premiere of "The Great Christmas Light Fight" (7.684 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.8, #T5) plus a second "The Great Christmas Light Fight" (7.593 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 2.0, #T3) and a new "Castle" (8.041 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.7, #7).

Meanwhile, FOX (1.879 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T4) served up repeats of "Gotham" (2.163 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T10) and "Sleepy Hollow" (1.596 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.4, #13).

And finally, the fall finale of "The Originals" (1.409 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T10) and a new "Jane the Virgin" (1.236 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.5, #12) closed out the evening on The CW (1.322 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T4).

President Obama's appearance on "The Colbert Report" helped "@midnight" to its biggest draw this year, 832,000.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 12/9/14

"Estrellas" Curso Segundo
Telemundo Kicks off Second Season January 11
From TV by the Numbers
Gabriel Coronel, Kimberly Dos Ramos, Sissi Fleitas, Judith Grace, Fabián Ríos, Don Pedro Rivera, Maripily Rivera, Henry Santos, Fernando Vargas and Gabriela Vergara kick-off 2015 as contestants on Telemundo’s second season of “Top Chef Estrellas,” the primetime culinary competition premiering Sunday, January 11 at 9pm/8c. Hosted by renowned TV personality, Ingrid Hoffmann, and featuring the return of leading chefs Lorena Garcia, Jaime Martin Del Campo and Ramiro Arvizu as judges, these prominent celebrities from the world of entertainment, music and sports will compete for a total of $100,000 awarded to a charity of their choice, but only one will win the “Top Chef” title in this hotter, tastier and provocative new season.

Shot in Boston, Massachusetts and produced by Emmy award-winning production house Magical Elves, the new edition of “Top Chef Estrellas” is hosted by TV personality and restaurateur Ingrid Hoffmann, who has hosted multiple cooking shows, including “Simply Delicioso” on the Food Network and “Delicioso” on Galavision. She is also the author of Latin D’Lite and “Simply Delicioso: A Collection of Everyday Recipes with a Latin Twist.”

In their return as judges of Telemundo’s “Top Chef Estrellas,” TV host and author Chef Lorena Garcia, is one of the leading chefs in the country, having competed in season four of Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters.” Chefs Jaime Martin Del Campo and Ramiro Arvizu, nominated for the prestigious James Beard award, have been featured in numerous TV shows and are the owners of the award-winning restaurant “La Casita Mexicana” in Los Angeles.

TV by the Numbers

posted 12/9/14

Nicky's New Bag
Westlife Star to Host Lottery Game
From Irish Herald
A SHAKE-up of the RTE schedule will see former Westlife star Nicky Byrne fronting a new Saturday night game show.

The 2fm presenter is understood to have already done a number of screen tests for the role.

Winning Streak will be moved to a summer schedule to make way for the new National Lottery game show.

The new licence holders of the National Lottery are reported to have wanted the 2fm presenter for the new show.

A spokesperson for RTE confirmed that the new show would be launched in January.

However, she said that reports of Winning Streak being revamped were wide of the mark and that current hosts Marty Whelan and Sinead Kennedy would remain involved when it returns.

"RTE and National Lottery will have an exciting new gameshow in January and the new presenter will be announced soon," she said.

"We look forward to Winning Streak and Marty and Sinead returning later in 2015," she added.

Irish Herald

posted 12/9/14

Electus Heads to Asia
On Deck, "Fashion Star", "Bet On Your Baby"
From the Futon Critic
Multimedia entertainment studio Electus, an operating business of IAC (Nasdaq: IACI), today announced that its global distribution arm, Electus International, has signed multiple first and second season format deals for Fashion Star and Bet on Your Baby to Asian broadcasters. Sales of these formats to multiple countries, including China, Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines, demonstrate the considerable growth of Electus' programs in the Asian market.

The Goddesses' New Clothes, a localized version of the Fashion Star format, co-produced by Electus International, Hitao, Blue Flame, and Dragon TV, has been commissioned for a second season on China's Dragon TV, scheduled to return in 2015. In The Goddesses' New Clothes, six female celebrities design and model "themed" clothes with the help of professional designers to win orders from shop owners at tmall.com - one of China's largest e-commerce site. The Fashion Star format is also airing on Vietnam VTV-3. Airing on NBC from 2012-2013, the original format of Fashion Star gave 12 eager young designers the chance to win a multi-million dollar prize of launching their original collections in three of the nation's largest retailers.

After a hugely successful launch last year in the Philippines, Electus International has secured a deal for a second season of Bet on Your Baby on ABS-CBN, which is airing daily in access prime time. New deals have also been secured in Vietnam's with TVAD - VTV and in Thailand. The format has now been sold into more than six territories including China, Korea, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia. Bet on Your Baby, which airs on ABC in the United States, is a primetime game show in which parents try to predict their child's next move in an effort to win money for their child's future education.

"The successful rollout and continued international growth of both Fashion Star and Bet on Your Baby is due in large part to our partners on the ground who have been relentless in making each show a big local success.' said Cyrus Farrokh, Vice President of Electus International. "We are thrilled to continue building on these relationships going into ATF."

The Futon Critic

posted 12/9/14

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "Stealing Cheryl"

  • Cheryl Burke leaving "Dancing"... for a variety show on NBC. Wonder if NPH knows about this (People)
     
  • Now playing on Gold, Bob Monkhouse (Digital Spy)
     
  • John O'Hurley takes time from Chicago to visit South Florida (SouthFlorida.com)
     
  • CASTING COUCH: Mark Burnett. Quiz show... THREE GUESSES WHAT THIS IS. You're probably right (Reality Wanted)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with James O'Halloran, TPIR's newest pretty face (Fox News)

posted 12/9/14

America's Judge Is Coming Back
Howard Stern Will Return for Season 10 of AGT
From The Futon Critic
Howard Stern is set to return as a judge on the milestone tenth season of NBC's top-rated summer competition series "America's Got Talent."

"I decided that a life without 'AGT' is not a life worth living," said Stern. "America needs a caring, compassionate and wise judge and who am I to deny the people what they want? It would be selfish of me to walk away."

Stern, who joined "America's Got Talent" in 2012, is a self-described "king of all media" and has been a prominent radio personality for more than 30 years. His current program is aired on subscription-only SiriusXM Radio and features a range of guests from all areas of entertainment and pop culture. Stern is also a bestselling author, actor and entrepreneur.

"Howard's wit and character bring an incomparable humor and insight to 'America's Got Talent,'" said Paul Telegdy, President, Alternative and Late Night Programming. "We are thrilled to have him return."

"I'm delighted that Howard is returning to America's Got Talent," said Trish Kinane, Executive Producer and President of Entertainment, FremantleMedia North America. "He is honest, charismatic and committed to finding the best talent in America. It's going to be an amazing Season 10."

Listen to the official announcement on "The Howard Stern Show" on SiriusXM Radio: https://soundcloud.com/howardstern/howardstern_agt

The Futon Critic
Twitter: @sternshow

posted 12/8/14

Meet the Drag Racers
Catch Season 7 in 2015
From The Futon Critic
RuPaul is back to storm the runway with the highly anticipated seventh season of the groundbreaking series, "RuPaul's Drag Race." Logo TV revealed the eagerly awaited cast comprised of the nation's 14 drag elite tonight during the "2014 New Now Next Awards." In a nod to superfans, Logo TV also launched a social scavenger hunt earlier this week via Snapchat and Facebook that culminated in the announcement of Miss Fame and Jasmine Masters as competing queens.

"This year we have some of the youngest and oldest contestants in 'RuPaul's Drag Race' herstory," said Executive Producer, RuPaul. "Study each queen closely. Do not underestimate anyone. The girls that make it to the top this season will shock you."

The new season, which will premiere in 2015, will feature the Queens competing for the crown to determine who will walk away with a $100,000 cash prize and the coveted title of "America's Next Drag Superstar." Along the way, they'll deliver gag-worthy and jaw-dropping moments as these talented ladies of drag join RuPaul's court of esteemed queens to compete in the pop culture phenomenon that has taken the world by its weave.

The 14 queens going "wigs to the wall" for the win include:

· Sasha Belle Iowa City, IA TW: @SashaBelle3, IG: @Sashabelley
· Violet Chachki Atlanta, GA TW: @VioletChachki, IG: @VioletChachki
· Kennedy Davenport Dallas, TX TW: @KennedytheDoll, IG: @davenportkennedy
· Mrs. Kasha Davis Rochester, NY TW: @KashaDavis, IG: @KashaDavis
· Tempest DuJour Tucson, AZ TW: @TempestDujour IG: @TempestDujour
· Miss Fame New York, NY TW: @MissFameNYC, IG: @MissFameNYC
· Jaidynn Diore Fierce Nashville, TN TW: @jaidynnfierce, IG: @jaidynnfierce
· Kandy Ho' Cayey, PR TW: @kandy_ho, IG: @ho_kandy
· Katya Boston, MA TW: @welovekatya, IG: @welovekatya
· Jasmine Masters Los Angeles, CA TW: @jasminemasters IG: @MsJasmineMasters
· Trixie Mattel Milwaukee, WI TW: @trixiemattel IG: @trixiemattel
· Max Minneapolis, MN TW: @MAXCollective, IG: @MAXCollective
· Ginger Minj Orlando, FL TW: @gingerminj IG: @gingerminj
· Pearl New York, NY TW: @pearliaison, IG: @pearliaison

The Futon Critic
Entertainment Weekly

posted 12/8/14

Len Goodman Calls It a Day
"Dancing" Judge to End at 10 Years
From Digital Spy
Len Goodman has revealed that he will quit Dancing with the Stars next year.

In an interview with Digital Spy and others, the dancing judge said the spring season will be his last.

"Next year, I'm not going to do the flying backwards and forwards – I'm not going to do the American show... I've got to have a bit of time off," Goodman explained.

"I've got my wife, I've got my son, my mother is still alive and she's in hospital – I've had virtually no time to go and visit her.

"So, I just need a bit of time off to get on with a normal life. And it was either Strictly went or the American one went or the tour went... I'm doing the spring one when I go out there... and that's going to be my last one."

Goodman added that he will not be taking part in the upcoming Strictly tour, with series favorites Tom Chambers and Camilla Dallerup stepping in to take his place.

The Strictly Come Dancing judge said: "Dancing with the Stars - next year is their 10th year, it's the 20th series of the show. So I think that's a nice place to stop."

Goodman went on to express confidence that fellow judge Bruno Tonioli will remain on both Dancing with the Stars and Strictly Come Dancing.

Digital Spy

posted 12/8/14

Who's Asking? Thairath TV, That's Who
Armoza Format Goes to Thailand
From World Screen
Thailand’s Thairath TV has commissioned a first season of Armoza Formats' studio game show Who’s Asking?, which heads into production for a local version in January 2015.

Thairath TV, a leading digital terrestrial channel in Thailand, will be producing the treatment with TV Thunder. The first season is set for 39 episodes to air weekly during a Sunday 4 p.m. slot. The series is scheduled to launch in February 2015.

The studio game show, developed by United Studios of Israel, is not just about what questions the participants must answer, but also who is asking them.

Natakrit Wannapinyo, VP of business development at TV Thunder, said, “We are excited to bring this unique quiz show format to Thairath TV in February. Who’s Asking? Thailand will offer an experience which has never been seen before in other quiz show.”

Avi Armoza, CEO of Armoza Formats, added, “Who’s Asking? brings fresh elements to the world of studio game shows through the unique question mechanic, making it more accessible for audiences and players of all ages in a simple yet refreshing way. We look forward to working with Thairath TV and TV Thunder and to seeing the first adaptation of Who’s Asking? airing in Thailand.”

World Screen

posted 12/8/14

Monday Lightning Round
... or "Lucky Men"

  • Chris Hardwick staying up with a Hearst daughter. The takeaway... he's 43?! POINTS! (Us Magazine)
     
  • Using his best material on players, Pat Sajak turns to the audience (Fansided)
     
  • Stuart Scott's colleagues give him a long-overdue tribute as he battles cancer for the third time (Fansided)
     
  • LIST ABUSE: The five times Jeopardy! was ever whimsically musical (Riverfront Times)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: here comes Pointless King Wenceslas (Classic FM)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with two guys - the winners of America's Next Top Model (Zap2it) and TPIR's Male Model Search (TV by the Numbers) - and a girl - Countdown's main brain Rachel Riley (East Lothian News)

posted 12/8/14

Papa Goes Boom
Comic Tom Papa to Host "Boom" for Fox
From The Hollywood Reporter
Actor and comedian Tom Papa has signed with APA. Two months after recurring as the dubious medical supply peddler Mr. Luff on Cinemax drama The Knick, Papa will be seen as one of the many comedy boldfaces in Chris Rock’s Top Five. Next year, Papa will host the new Fox game show Boom!, to go with previous TV credits The Marriage Ref, The New Adventures of Old Christine and HBO’s Behind the Candelabra, in which he portrayed Liberace’s producer Ray Arnett. Papa, who also has appeared in films The Informant!, Bee Movie and Analyze That, hosts weekly SiriusXM show Come to Papa. He continues to be managed by 3 Arts.

The Hollywood Reporter

posted 12/5/14

Thursday: Peter Pan Syndrome
NBC, CBS Split Night
From The Futon Critic
NBC (9.129 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.3, #1) pulled off a demo victory on Thursday thanks to its presentation of "Peter Pan Live!" (9.129 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.3, #T3).

CBS (9.531 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #2) then was a close second place with a repeat of "The Big Bang Theory" (10.741 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #T3) followed by originals from "Mom" (10.569 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.5, #T1), "Two and a Half Men" (10.375 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.5, #T1), "The McCarthys" (8.260 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.0, #5) and "Elementary" (8.619 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.8, #6).

Next up was FOX (4.802 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #3) and a new "Bones" (5.968 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.5, #7) plus the penultimate week of "Gracepoint" (3.636 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8).

Meanwhile, ABC (3.151 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.8, #4) served up the return of "The Taste" (3.306 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8) and a repeat "How to Get Away with Murder" (2.841 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.6, #11).

And finally, new episodes of "The Vampire Diaries" (1.495 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #10) and "Reign" (1.247 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #12) closed out the evening on The CW (1.371 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5).

"Project Runway All-Stars" beat out the competition on cable with 1.641 million. "Pawnography" comes in a close second with 1.622 million at 10p, and 1.497 million for 10:30p. The rest of the offerings scored below 1 million:

- Beat Bobby Flay: 859,000
- Project Runway: Threads: 767,000
- Food Truck Face Off: 545,000
- @midnight: 454,000

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 12/5/14

They Really Want a Dancer to Win This, Don't They?
Cris Judd Hired to Find Dancers for America's Got Talent
From The Wrap
“America's Got Talent” is getting a new dance scout.

Choreographer Cris Judd, best known for his eight-month long marriage to Jennifer Lopez, will be joining the reality competition's Season 10. Judd will be in charge of finding the best dancers for the talent reality show.

“I'm so excited to be a part of season 10 of ‘America's Got Talent,” said Judd. “My goal is to offer hesitant contestants confidence and alleviate their fear of auditioning because they don't think that they have it. From the little dance schools, to finding the diamond in the rough, there are so many talented dancers in America and I'm confident we will find the best of the best.”

Judd is no stranger to the “Got Talent” format, having recently served as a judge on the New Zealand version of the reality competition. He has also worked as a choreographer for past episodes of “America's Got Talent.”

The Wrap

posted 12/5/14

Quickest. Retirement. Ever.
Chris Tarrant Taping Pilot for ITV
From ATV Today
Chris Tarrant is venturing back into the world of quiz shows with a new pilot to be produced by RDF Television.

Broadcast reports that the unnamed pilot is being recorded on 15 December at Studio 2000 in Elstree and will see contestants battle against each other as they answers a series of questions to safeguard their prize fund.

The studio audience will also be given the opportunity to win some money if they can predict which player will be eliminated next.

Last year, Tarrant relinquished his Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? presenting duties after 15 years, with ITV subsequently deciding not to continue the long-running format without him.

He said at the time “It’s been a huge part of my life for fifteen years and I’ve loved every minute of it, but it is time for me to move on from Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. It’s been the most remarkable journey and I consider myself very fortunate to have been associated with Millionaire from its inception. ITV have been fantastic in their support from day one and to see its huge success has been thrilling.”

It is thought that ITV is not behind the pilot which will be exec produced by RDF’s head of entertainment Peter Usher.

ATV Today
Broadcast

posted 12/5/14

Happy Friday! Lightning Round
... or "Write On!"

  • WGA Awards nominations are out... and Jeopardy!, Hollywood Game Night are going head to head (Deadline)
     
  • "Shark Tank Your Life" ... this is a thing? (ABC News)
     
  • LIST ABUSE: TV's most capitalistic game shows (People)
     
  • John O'Hurley returns to Broadway in.... what else? (Broadway World)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: Ryan Seacrest to spend New Year's Eve turning 40 (YouTube)

posted 12/5/14

Thursday Lightspeed Round
... or "Boom Crash, the Sound of Our Browser... Sorry"

  • "The Great British Bake-Off Baking Show" comes to PBS December 28 (The Futon Critic)
     
  • "The Challenge" returns with "Battle of the Exes II" January 6, dedicated to both Diem Brown & Ryan Knight (Entertainment Weekly)
     
  • SYNDIES: Week 9 (* = season high)
    1. Wheel of Fortune (CTD) 7.5* +1%
    2. Jeopardy (CTD) 7.2* +3%
    3. Family Feud (Debmar-Mercury) 6.4 NC
    4. Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (Disney-ABC) 2.0 +5%
    5. Celebrity Name Game (Debmar-Mercury/FMNA) 1.3* +8%
    (TV Newscheck)
     
  • It may be Wink Martindale's birthday, but he's got the gift of Elvis on his 100 Greatest Christmas Hits of All Time (All Access Music Group)
     
  • The "Hounds" get released... on iOS, Android (Gamasutra)
     
  • Ola Jordan (who?) makes "Jump" from "Strictly", reports (Unreality TV)
     
  • YOU (SADLY) CAN'T MAKE THIS $#*! UP!: In Russia, you can apparently throw a punch (Irish Independent)
     
  • QI heads to Kent for a one-off (Kent News)
     
  • IN MEMORIAM: "Biggest Loser" alum Damien Gurganious (1978-2014) (E!)

posted 12/4/14

The Man Who Made Taylor Swift Heads to Idol
New Mentor Replaces Randy Jackson
From The Futon Critic
Scott Borchetta, President and CEO of the Big Machine Label Group and one of the most successful forces in the music industry today, has joined AMERICAN IDOL XIV as mentor to help shape the career of the competition's winner. Borchetta's relationship with the next AMERICAN IDOL will extend past the show's finale; Borchetta's Big Machine Records will partner with 19 Entertainment and Universal Music Group to oversee the launch of his/her recording career. The winner will join Borchetta's record label roster of superstar talent, including global pop star Taylor Swift, whom he discovered at the age of 14, as well as Tim McGraw, Reba, Rascal Flatts, Florida Georgia Line and The Band Perry.

The Season XIV mentor role was re-imagined and stepped up to provide Borchetta's unique perspective from early on in the competition - through the live shows, to the final winning moment and beyond. Borchetta joined IDOL during Hollywood Week, when he watched the performances in advance of offering his expertise to the contestants who continue in the competition.

"There's only one reason I'm doing this: AMERICAN IDOL has proven again and again that it can launch superstars. I believe that working with these young artists the same way we work with new artists at the Big Machine Label Group will help the next AMERICAN IDOL be as prepared as possible to continue the tradition of creating new superstars," said Borchetta. "The entire label group will be invested and we look forward to bringing our energy, focus and know-how to help develop this young talent at the highest levels."

"This season, Jennifer, Keith and Harry have found some truly talented singers, and the addition of Scott's expertise in how to develop an artist gives our contestants a unique shot at success," said Trish Kinane, President of Entertainment, FremantleMedia North America and executive producer, AMERICAN IDOL. "It's been terrific to see Scott's enthusiasm as he watched each of the performances at Hollywood Week and we can't wait for America to see our hopefuls transform into superstars."

"AMERICAN IDOL has been directly responsible for creating more music stars and selling more music than any other TV show in history. We are thrilled to partner with Scott and Universal Music Group to continue that tradition. Our contestants have the greatest platform ever created to become music superstars. They deserve the best and, again, they will get it," said Jason Morey, EVP and World Wide Head of Music, 19 Entertainment.

"I'm stoked," said David Hill, Senior Executive Vice President, 21st Century Fox.

"The greatest legacy of AMERICAN IDOL is that we produce legitimate stars," said creator and executive producer Simon Fuller. "Over the years, not only have we made more stars than any other talent show in the world, we have also provided the very best people from the music industry to guide our singers and offer valuable advice. This year, we are thrilled to have one of the music industry's shining lights take on the role of mentor for our talent, overseeing their journey right through to the recording and release of the winner's album. Scott Borchetta is enjoying unparalleled success right now. Not only did he mastermind the incredible career of Taylor Swift, but also countless other incredible artists. We are extremely proud to have him on the AMERICAN IDOL team."

The Futon Critic
Variety
The Hollywood Reporter

posted 12/3/14

Tuesday: Old Network, Young Network
CBS Skews Old, While NBC Takes the Demo
From The Futon Critic
NBC (7.686 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.8, #1) edged out the top demo spot on Tuesday with its mix of "The Voice" (11.096 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.6, #1), "Marry Me" (4.963 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8), "About a Boy" (4.266 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T13) and "Chicago Fire" (7.346 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T5).

ABC (5.757 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.7, #2) then was a close second place with its combination of "Toy Story That Time Forgot" (6.789 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.9, #3), "A Charlie Brown Christmas" (6.751 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 2.1, #2), "Marvel's Agents of SHIELD" (5.334 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.8, #4) and "Forever" (5.166 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.2, #12).

Next up was FOX (3.791 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #3) and its lineup of "MasterChef Junior" (4.852 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T5), "New Girl" (3.009 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8) and "The Mindy Project" (2.453 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T13).

Meanwhile, CBS (9.660 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.3, #4) served up second runs of "NCIS" (11.476 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8), "NCIS: New Orleans" (10.490 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8) and "Person of Interest" (7.013 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.0, #15).

And finally, new episodes of "The Flash" (4.222 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.5, #7) and "Supernatural" (2.358 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.9, #16) on The CW (3.290 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.2, #5) closed out the evening.

On cable, "Ink Master" led with 1.351 million, narrowly beating "Chopped's" 1.345 million.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 12/3/14

Monday: "Voice" Helps NBC to 1st
No Change from Last Week, Though
From The Futon Critic
NBC (9.676 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #1) kicked off December on top with new episodes of "The Voice" (10.999 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.7, #1) and "State of Affairs" (7.030 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T2).

ABC (8.685 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2) then took home the silver with its annual special "CMA Country Christmas" (8.851 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T2) and a new "Castle" (8.354 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T4).

Next up was FOX (3.755 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #3) with a repeat of "Gotham" (3.014 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T10) and the fall finale of "Sleepy Hollow" (4.495 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T4).

Meanwhile, CBS (5.357 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.1, #4) served up its marathon lineup of "Mike & Molly" (6.254 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T6), another "Mike & Molly" (5.671 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T6), yet another "Mike & Molly" (5.173 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T6), even more "Mike & Molly" (5.009 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.1, #9) and "Scorpion" (5.017 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T10).

And finally, the specials "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer" (1.598 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T12) and "Greatest Holiday Commercials Countdown" (1.497 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T12) on The CW (1.548 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the evening.

"@midnight's" return gave Comedy Central's 582,000.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 12/3/14

Survivors in Love
Tweak in Format Coming to Market
From World Screen
Zodiak Media has secured a round of renewals for the Survivor format, alongside a deal for a brand-new adaptation: Survivor Love Edition.

Zodiak's Mastiff Sweden scored a commission from the TV4 Group in Sweden for Survivor Love Edition. The new series will see the classic reality game show get a romantic twist, as seven single guys and girls are stranded on a deserted island together. The new iteration will get a 30-episode run to air in early 2015 as Robinson: Love Edition in Sweden. The commission marks Mastiff Sweden's first Survivor order.

In France, ALP has been commissioned by TF1 for a new season of more than 20 hours of programming for 2015. Currently in production, it will be a non-celebrity version of Koh Lanta (Survivor's local title), which will be the 14th classic season.

Magnolia Italy is set to produce its tenth season of Survivor L’isola dei famosi, an adaptation of Celebrity Survivor, for its new Italian home Canale 5. The 8x120-minute series will launch in early 2015.

In Spain, Magnolia has recently finished producing its seventh season, which broadcasts on Mediaset’s Telecinco. Magnolia has now been commissioned for an eighth season by Telecinco for 2015.

World Screen

posted 12/3/14

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Holiday Dinner"

  • SUNDAY: "Grocery Games": 1.340 million. "Holiday Baking Championship": 1.615 million. "Cutthroat Kitchen": 1.207 million (Showbuzz Daily)
     
  • "Keep It In The Family" can't be kept in the UK (World Screen)
     
  • Blake Shelton "Lonely Tonight" on "The Voice" (The Futon Critic)
     
  • Pharrell Williams is "happy" to be in a Chanel commercial (Adweek)
     
  • IN MEMORIAM: Jean Béliveau (1931-2014) on "To Tell the Truth" (Sports Illustrated)

posted 12/3/14

"Best New Restaurant": January 21
Tom Colicchio Takes Over the Gordon Ramsay Role
From The Futon Critic
Bravo Media is warming up winter with the new culinary competition series "Best New Restaurant," premiering on Wednesday, January 21 at 10pm ET/PT. Acclaimed chef and restaurateur Tom Colicchio dines across the U.S. as host, judge, and executive producer, taking a look at the food world from a fresh direction: the restaurant. The series is also executive produced by restaurateur and TV personality Gordon Ramsay.

The majority of the series takes place on location in the restaurants themselves to highlight each establishment's unique point of view. In the end, only one will be crowned Best New Restaurant and win an editorial feature in Bon Appétit, a featured spot at America's number one global food festival, Vegas Uncork'd by Bon Appétit 2015, and $100,000. For a sneak peek at the season, visit http://www.bravotv.com/best-new-restaurant/season-1/videos/a-sneak-peek-at-best-new-restaurant.

Joining Tom as culinary experts on this gastronomic journey across the country are Maggie Nemser (CEO & Editor-in-Chief, BlackboardEats.com) and Jeffrey Zurofsky (Co-founder & Partner, 'wichcraft), who will offer their unique and diverse opinions to help guide Tom in his final decisions. The team will evaluate each restaurant on not only the dishes that are served, but also everything from décor to hospitality to overall concept.

The 16 restaurants hail from four cities including New York City, Los Angeles, Austin and Miami, and were chosen to compete based on an extensive search in conjunction with the editors at Bon Appétit as well as executive producers Tom Colicchio and Gordon Ramsay. In the first round of competition, the restaurants are divided into pairs based around a common theme reflected in their concepts or culinary influences. All are challenged to the same three tasks testing their overall performance, the strength of their staff, and the clarity of their concept. First, the restaurants are subjected to a "Pressure Test," in which 30 hungry diners descend on the restaurants without notice to see how the businesses handle the stress of a packed house. Next, Tom sends in two "Undercover Diners" wired with hidden cameras in order to get a patron's perspective when the restaurants do not know they are being judged. Finally, the two paired-up restaurants come together in a neutral location and serve dinner for 30 VIP diners. At the end of each of the first eight episodes, Tom declares one restaurant the victor, and the establishments move on to the semifinals.

The semifinal rounds will feature the restaurants battling in two groups to open a pop-up restaurant based around what the eateries see as the next evolution of their current concepts. The grand finale pits the final two restaurants against each other in a head-to-head contest to put forward their best service possible for a group of 50 VIP diners at Tom's restaurant Riverpark in New York City.

The restaurant pairings featured on the show are:

Shared Plates - The Federal vs. Swift's Attic
Italian Cuisine - Dolce Italian vs. Doma Beverly Hills
New Service Concepts - The Church Key vs. Restaurant Jezebel
Operated by Couples - R House vs. Barlata Tapas Bar
Battle of the Burger - Porter Ale House and Gastropub vs. Tongue & Cheek
European Inspired - L'Apicio vs. Little Sparrow
Fast Casual Dining - Morgan's Barbecue vs. Buns & Buns
Seasonal Menus - Union Restaurant vs. The Pines

"Best New Restaurant" is modeled after the UK hit "Ramsay's Best Restaurant" and is produced by One Potato Two Potato with Gordon Ramsay, Tom Colicchio, Elizabeth Cook, Nicola Moody, Pat Llewellyn, and Ben Adler serving as executive producers.

The Futon Critic

posted 12/2/14

The Bachelor Goes Live for 19
Catch It on ABC January 5
From The Futon Critic
Chris Soules, the handsome successful "Prince Farming," introduced himself to last season's Bachelorette Andi Dorfman, and female fans fell hard for the soft spoken man with a heart of gold. This dreamboat farmer and wealthy businessman from Iowa is looking to fall in love and bring his wife back home. Chris truly believes he can find the right woman who will love him and share a life with him in the small Iowa town of Arlington. So, with the support of his family and the state of Iowa rooting for him, Chris is ready to begin the search for his soul mate, choosing from a record 30 beautiful bachelorettes when the 19th edition of "The Bachelor" premieres MONDAY, JANUARY 5 (8:00-11:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network.

Chris Harrison hosts this first-time live premiere event with a studio audience and past fan favorites from The Bachelor and Bachelorette series, as Bachelor Nation goes behind-the-scenes of Chris Soules' everyday life and an up-close-and-personal look at some of the bachelorettes around the country who will try and capture his heart.

The Futon Critic

posted 12/2/14

Wild On Sky1
Kate Humble, Jason Byrne to Host New Nature-Based Course Game
From Digital Spy
TV presenter Kate Humble and comedian Jason Byrne have been confirmed as presenters for Sky1's new wildlife-themed entertainment program Wild Things.

The gameshow, which was commissioned in August, features couples or pairs of relations undertaking challenges on a huge woodland obstacle course in order to win a fortune of gold coins buried within the Wild Wood.

However, there is a twist in that one member of the team must become the Wild Thing, meaning they must wear a woodland protection suit which is designed to look like an animal native to the area, such as an owl, a duck or a mole.

This means that they cannot see anything and will need their partner to guide them to victory.

Humble said of her role: "Wild Things is one of the most gloriously silly, side-splittingly funny programs I have ever had the pleasure of being involved with. Wildlife has never behaved so badly."

Byrne added: "I'm really proud to be a part of Wild Things, one of the funniest and 'funnest' shows I've ever worked on. It's not often I cry laughing at a badger bashing a duck while an owl bowls them over to the ground. But then again, who wouldn't find that funny?"

Digital Spy
FemaleFirst
Sunday World

posted 12/2/14

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "The Big Two-Oh... Milllion"

posted 12/2/14


GSN Turns 20
Happy Anniversary from the Guys
From various sources
Cable's one-stop shop for game shows reached a milestone today.

GSN (nee the Game Show Network) was launched on this day, December 1, in 1994. Born from Sony Pictures' purchases of the libraries and property rights of the Merv Griffin, Chuck Barris & Barry-Enright libraries - as well as the lease of the Goodson-Todman library, the fledgling network promised "all play, all day", an idea that was previously relegated to cable afternoons and network mornings. Their first show, a rerun of "What's My Line?" not seen in decades.

After making a meager fortune from off-broadcast reruns of owned and leased properties, the network went into production of their own original series such as "Super Decades", "Burt Luddin's Love Buffet" (a sitcom built around an actual game show), "Hollywood Showdown" (an entertainment-themed reboot of "Jackpot!"), and "Inquizition" (a quiz housed in an abandoned warehouse).

The history of GSN would not be complete without acknowledging its well-publicized failures, from the Dark Period (when the network lost the rights to the Goodson-Todman catalog), to numerous attempts at rebranding as a home for all brands of unscripted competition ("GSN Video Games", "DJ Games", and reruns of "The Mole" & "Average Joe" all came and went without much fanfare).

Also, GSN became the go-to for reimagined versions of tried-and-true formats, from 2002's "Whammy! The All-New Press Your Luck" to 2010's "The Newlywed Game". The latter gave GSN its first Emmy nomination.

Nowadays, the network has evolved from its humble roots. A forbearer of interactive television now leads a cottage industry of casual gaming thanks to an investment in Worldwinner. A think-outside-the-box mentality that gave rise to "Throut and Neck" now gives rise to critical darlings such as "The American Bible Challenge", "IdioTest", and "The Chase".

So where does the network go from here? GSN has now logged three consecutive years of growth in the target demo of women 25-54 and had its most-watched year in 2013. GSN will continue to rely on acquired game shows — like Steve Harvey’s Family Feud, which has done extremely well — but the primary focus will be on development, with the goal to have 12-15 primetime original series in 2015, double the network’s 2013 output.

"I think GSN today is first and foremost a place where women — 25-to-54 is our primary target — can go for escape, for fun or game. That’s our primary focus," said Amy Introcaso-Davis, EVP of Programming. "We are fun, family-oriented. Bible Challenge was interesting to us because it actually was a family-oriented program. Pegged to a very specific audience, but at the end of the day, what’s appealing to most people is that it’s a family show. Most game shows are. But what we really want to do is differentiate ourselves as new game and primarily we’ll be doing that in primetime. There will always be a place for the old-time shows on GSN but they will be primarily during the day."

Deadline
Hitfix
TV Media Insights

posted 12/1/14

28 Years... and Still Going
Both Games See Rises for the Week Ending Nov. 21
From TV by the Numbers
CBS, the top-rated network in Daytime for 28 consecutive years, posted growth across the daypart as LET'S MAKE A DEAL, THE PRICE IS RIGHT, THE YOUNG AND The Restless and THE TALK all delivered their largest audiences of the season, according to Nielsen live plus same day ratings for the week ending Nov. 21.

LET'S MAKE A DEAL 1 averaged 3.23 million viewers, up +9% from its previous week. It was also up +11% in women 25-54 (1.0/07) and +17% in women 18-49 (0.7/05).

LET'S MAKE A DEAL 2 averaged 3.71 million viewers, up +8%. It was up +22% in women 25-54 (1.1/07) and +33% in women 18-49 (0.8/06).

THE PRICE IS RIGHT 1 averaged 5.10 million viewers, up +4% in viewers while also up +11% in women 18-49 (1.0/07)

THE PRICE IS RIGHT 2 averaged 5.84 million viewers, up +4% in viewers and gaining +7% in women 25-54 (1.5/09).

TV by the Numbers

posted 12/1/14

Wednesday: We Completely Forgot, Didn't We?
"Survivor" Helps CBS Close Sweeps on a Winning Note
From the Futon Critic
CBS (9.310 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.0, #1) closed the November sweeps period on top thanks to new episodes of "Survivor: San Juan del Sur" (8.926 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #T2), "Criminal Minds" (10.855 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) and "Stalker" (8.150 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #4).

ABC (5.165 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.4, #2) then claimed the silver with its encore lineup of "A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving" (8.044 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.1, #T2), "Modern Family" (5.329 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #5), "Black-ish" (4.238 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.2, #6) and "Nashville" (2.670 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T10).

Next up was NBC (3.696 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #3) with its specials "The Making of Peter Pan Live!" (3.023 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T10) and "Saturday Night Live Thanksgiving" (4.033 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7).

Meanwhile, FOX (2.981 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.9, #4) served up originals from "Hell's Kitchen" (3.470 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7) and "Red Band Society" (2.492 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #9).

And finally, the feature "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" (2.073 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T10) on The CW (2.073 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5) closed out the evening.

On cable, "Kitchen Inferno" took Thanksgiving Eve with 892,000.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 12/1/14

Kids These Days...
Jeopardy!'s Kids Week Plays Tonight!
From Sony PR
Tomorrow’s leaders, scientists, politicians, novelists and poets aren’t waiting for their chance to shine. They’re ready to flaunt their talents and show off their brains today on Jeopardy!'s annual Kids' Week!

Tune in December 1 – 5 to watch 15 of America’s brightest youths compete for cash that will be put toward their college funds. Five nights. Five winners.

Sony

posted 12/1/14

Monday Lightning Round
... or "The Big Two-Oh"

  • Before the reigning "Voice" cuts a single, Josh Kaufman is heading to Broadway to play "Pippin" (The Hollywood Reporter)
     
  • Stephen Fry, Richard Osman lend their voices to "Danger Mouse". And who will voice the titular rodent? Xander Armstrong (Licensing.biz)
     
  • Howie Mandel has a serious "fear of missing out" (Adweek)

posted 12/1/14


A Special Message from Us to You...
On This Day of Thanksgiving
From GSNN
Five years ago, we wrote a piece on this site that began with the phrase, "A lot can happen in 10 years." And as much as a lot happened in the first 10 years of Game Show Newsnet's existence, a lot more happened in the next five. The game show became a lot more global, the audience became a lot more sophisticated.

And on this day of Thanksgiving, as we get set to begin our next 15 years, we would like to offer a few words to sincerely express our gratitude to you for making us who we are.

Please read, and have a VERY HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

GSNN

posted 11/30/14


RYAN KNIGHT: 1985-2014
"Real World" Alum Competed on "The Challenge"
From CBS LA
The “Real World” family is stunned by the second death in a month of one of their cast mates.

Ryan Knight, who appeared in the 2010 “Real World: New Orleans” season as well as “The Challenge,” has died.

He was 29.

His death comes just 13 days after 34-year-old Diem Brown died after a long bout with cancer. She appeared on “Road Rules” and “The Challenge.” Brown also dated “Real World: Paris” cast mate Chris “C.T.” Tamburello off and on.

TMZ reported that Knight was with friends Wednesday and in good spirits. He was found dead yesterday. No cause of death was given.

CBS Los Angeles
TMZ

photo courtesy MTV

posted 11/30/14

Thanksgiving Lightning Round
... or "Her Too..."

  • FRIDAY: "Amazing Race" third most-watched show of the night (The Futon Critic)
     
  • Victoria Coren Mitchell disconnects with PokerStars' pro team (International Business Times)
     
  • Jeremy Paxman will write about the BBC for a cool million (pounds) (RTE), but don't expect him to run for mayor of London "for all the eclairs in Paris" (RTE)

posted 11/30/14

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