Author Archives: jrittenberg

Advertising on VOD

Recently, there has been a lot of speculation in the media industry of how Video-On-Demand viewing will affect advertising. The point of VOD viewing is so viewers don’t have to sit through eight minutes of commercials for every thirty-minute program that they watch. However, these advertisements are the reason why studios can spend 1-3 million dollars on primetime television. The bottom line: there has to be commercials to support the current television model.

In order to figure out if advertising on VOD is something conceivable Digitas, AAMP, the 4A’s and BlackArrow constructed the Advanced Advertising Media Project. The results came in on Wednesday and here is what the survey found (from Cynopsis.com):

  • Metrics that approach established measurement tools already in use within the industry were identified as critical to helping advertisers understand the value of on-demand placements
  • Full-scale research is required to gauge consumer awareness and usage of VOD, as well as reactions to advertising in a VOD context. Little visibility exists today
  • VOD needs to be packaged as a product, and marketed to both advertisers and consumers in new ways that highlight the unique qualities of the VOD medium
  • VOD affords an opportunity for advertisers to connect to consumers in a highly engaging, focused viewing environment.
It seems as though there is a definite future in advertising on VOD but there may be some challenges along the way. Let me know what you think about advertising on this new medium.

Welcome to the Zoo!

Besides the fact that we are zombies to television, film and advertising there are more specific reasons why we call ourselves monkeys. Here is a virtual tour of our house/cage/zoo. Do you think that we should clean or is our house beyond repair? Leave you thoughts and we will certainly take them into consideration.


Yesterday, I found the weirdest thing on my DVR

Yesterday, after a long day of class I plopped down on the couch to catch up on television that I recorded. However, when I pulled up the DVR application I saw something I had never dreamed would appear in the cache of shows. It’s called Extreme Couponing and it’s on TLC. I’m not sure how it got there and I can’t imagine it was on purpose. I was actually pretty familiar with the show because of its recent series order and high ratings as a special. Being the TV aficionado that I am, I couldn’t pass up the desire to check it out (I will watch anything once). So I watched: one monkey, one show, 30 minutes.

My conclusion: This show is amazing. Non-fiction television at its finest and it is actually quite educational. In my opinion, the purpose of television is to take a viewer to a place that they couldn’t normally access and allow a passive interaction within that space. Although I have used coupons before, I had no idea the craze that existed as well as how much someone can save by using coupons. Check out this clip in which a woman’s groceries comes to $250 and she only pays $7!

I remember my mom sitting at the kitchen table on Sunday morning cutting coupons and preparing for the week’s groceries but this takes it to another level:

Check out Extreme Couponing Wednesday nights at 9PM on TLC.


Upfront 2011 Report

Picture taken from cdn6.wn.com

After countless hours of research, I have put together a post detailing the 2011 television upfront presentations. Upfront presentations are perhaps the most important event of the year for broadcast and cable television. Each channel presents its future plans including their programming, scheduling and development slates to media buyers. The presentations can very well determine how much time and money an advertiser is willing to spend on each network. Much of my information was taken from Cynopsis an excellent source of television and advertising news. Enjoy the lengthy post and let me know what you think about your favorite channel’s plans. Please note that not every network has held its upfront presentation yet, including the five broadcast channels.

Upfront 2011 Cheat Sheet as of 4/22/11

On 2/9/11 Current TV offered up their 2011 programming plans during a presentation at the Paley Center in New York.  Current TV revealed three new original series:

  • 50 Greatest Documentaries  Series showcases a countdown of the 50 greatest documentaries from the last 30 years.  Five one-hour episodes will premiere during third quarter 2011.
  • Headlines That Shocked America  Series examines some of the most extraordinary news events over the last twenty years.  Five one-hour episodes launch during third quarter 2011.
  • Smoke Jumpers  Series filmed in the Northern Rockies region follows the Missoula “Smoke Jumpers” an elite Special Forces team called in to fight forest fires.  Series is produced by @radical.media and Olive Eye Films.  Six one-hour episodes will premiere in fourth quarter 2011.

Current TV also related premiere dates for two previously-announced new original series and the return/continuation of two others:

  • Bar Karma, the world’s first community-developed TV series, debuts this Friday at 10p with 12 half-hour episodes.
  • Docu-series 4th and Forever opens April 3 at 10p with 9 half-hour episodes.
  • Vanguard airs on Sundays at 10p and the new season will launch this May.
  • Infomania, the half-hour weekly comedy series airs on Thursdays at 11p.
  • Additionally, This American Life, which recently had its basic cable premiere on the network, airs on Mondays at 10p.

For its 2011-2012 Upfront, National Geographic Channel presents a baker’s dozen of new series in production, with all falling into one of Nat Geo’s thematic pillars: Adrenaline, Extreme Engineering, Great Quests, News, Preserve Our Planet and Sci-Tech. (All titles are working titles.)

  • Alaska Wing Men – One-hour seven-episode series about the pilots who transport critical supplies and rescuing the lost and injured in areas where only planes can reach.  (Adrenaline)
  • American Knights in the U.S. – One-hour five-episode series featuring Charlie Andrews who would like to bring the sport of jousting out of the Renaissance fair and into prime time. (Adrenaline)
  • CSI Me – Six-episode one-hour project follows forensic experts as they piece together the life stories of people they have never met by examining the chemical composition of their hair, scars and more. (Sci-Tech)
  • Drugs, Inc. – Nat Geo goes inside the drug market business following the trail starting with a farm and ending with a dealer. Eight one-hour episodes. (Adrenaline)
  • Frontier Force – Over six one-hour episodes, this series follows Sheriff Mike McKeekin and his deputies as they bring law and order to the state of Montana. (Adrenaline)
  • History Cold Case – A group of forensic investigators examine historical artifacts and relics of people who lived through some of the greatest moments in history.  Eight one-hour episodes. (Great Quests)
  • Mad Scientists – A 12-episode half-hour series hosted by John Bowler who introduces viewers to a group of amateur inventors, weekend scientists and eccentrics who come up with ideas that just might work or really are crazy. (Sci-Tech)
  • Rocked – Five episode one-hour series treks with engineers as they travel the world securing unstable cliffs and slopes. (Extreme Engineering)
  • Rocket Men – A family from Alabama who are all NASA rocket scientists enjoy blowing up comets and coming up with answers to science’s biggest problems. 12 half-hour episodes. (Sci-Tech)
  • The Indestructibles – Scientists and experts delve into the science of defying death in various situations by studying the persons who survived. Seven one-hour episodes. (Sci-Tech)
  • The Link – This eight-episode one-hour series follows the chain reaction or inventions and events that led to the modern innovations we depend on today. (Extreme Engineering)
  • The Truth Behind – A team of scientific investigators track down the burning mysteries of the ages such as the Loch Ness Monster and Atlantis. Five one-hour episodes. (Great Quests)
  • The Witch Doctor Will See You Now – Four-part one-hour series hosted by Piers Gibbon leads a group of ordinary people with serious medical conditions to exotic locales around the world to seek the advice of healers, priests and witch doctors. (Sci-Tech)

National Geographic Channel is also returning ten series to its lineup:

  • Alaska State Troopers with 13 one-hour episodes (Adrenaline)
  • Beast Hunter with seven one-hour episodes (Great Quests)
  • Border Wars with five one-hour episodes (Adrenaline)
  • Explorer with 18 one-hour episodes (News)
  • Inside (Adrenaline & News)
  • Locked Up Abroad with 10 one-hour episodes (Adrenaline)
  • Ultimate Factories with seven one-hour episodes (Extreme Engineering)
  • Shark Men with 10 one-hour episodes (Sci-Tech)
  • Taboo with eight one-hour episodes (Adrenaline)
  • Wild Justice with 10 one-hour episodes (Adrenaline)

National Geographic Channel airs its annual Expedition Week showcasing 13 premieres over seven nights beginning April 3 at 9p.  The week’s worth of programs is hosted by the Shark Men leading up to the premiere of their new season on April 10.

Nat Geo WILD marks its first anniversary on March 29, 2011 and introduces six new series to its schedule inviting viewers to get closer to nature’s dangerous and gentle creatures.

  • America the Wild with Casey Anderson – Naturalist Casey Anderson stars in another season of wild explorations traveling across the US to our national parks. Six one-hour episodes.
  • Bush Cowboy with Matt Wright – Australian Matt Wright and his dog, Nash track and relocate ferocious beasts such as crocodiles and white sharks.
  • Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan – The famous “Dog Whisperer” is back on Nat Geo WILD with a new season of challenging dog cases. 10 one-hour episodes.
  • Dr. Pol’s Big Farm – Four-episode one-hour series follows farm vet Dr. Pol as he works across rural Michigan to care for family pets to livestock.
  • Man-Eater Manhunt – Cameraman Gordon Buchanan risks his life into the hunting grounds of grizzlies, tigers and other deadly animals. Four one-hour episodes.
  • Philly Undercover – A specialized team of Philadelphia police officers use high-tech surveillance equipment to protect man from himself going into dogfighting rings, illegal exotic pet traders and dealers. Six one-hour episodes.

Nat Geo WILD brings back three series:

  • Caught in the Act with four one-hour episodes.
  • Dangerous Encounters with six one-hour episodes.
  • Swamp Men with eight one-hour episodes.

Syfy announced its upfront plans at a presentation in New York City at the Foxwoods Theatre where the network also hosted a live performance of the Broadway show SPIDER-MAN Turn Off the Dark for the advertising community.  Syfy is the official media partner of the show.  Syfy has one new scripted series and three new reality series ready for next season:

  • Alphas – Plot centers on a team of ordinary people who have brain anomalies that give them extraordinary mental and physical abilities. The group is led by Dr. Leigh Rosen (David Strathairn) takes the law into their own hands to solve crimes.  Premieres in July.  Produced by Universal Cable Productions and BermanBraun Television.
  • Haunted Collector (wt) – New reality series follows John Zaffis and his family of famous paranormal investigators as they track down haunted items such as paintings, guns and dolls. Debuts in June. Produced by Gurney Productions.
  • Legend Quest – Action/adventure reality series features Ashley Cowie, a real-life symbologist as he travels the world in search of historic artifacts and relics, a la Indiana Jones and Da Vinci Code.  Launches in July. From BASE Productions and a co-production with Universal Networks International.
  • Paranormal Witness – Drama/documentary series brings stories of real people who have lived through bizarre paranormal experiences.  Premieres in September. From Raw TV.

Series in Development: Syfy has four scripted series as well as 10 reality series in development:

  • Battlestar: Blood and Chrome – One-hour series continues the Battlestar franchise with this series taking place in the 10th year of the first Cylon war.  Stars Luke Pasqualino and Ben Cotton.  Produced by Universal Cable Productions.
  • Three Inches – Half-hour scripted series centers on professional daydreamer and slacker Walter Spackman who is struck by lightning and develops a “super” power – the ability to move any object by using his mind, but only 3″ at a time. Fox Television Studios is producing with executive producer Robert Cooper via his company Landscape Entertainment.
  • In the Dark – Half-hour scripted series about a misfit group of third tier ghosthunters wannabes whose incompetence shines brighter than any paranormal activity they might encounter. From Universal Cable productions and executive produced by Dan Taberski through Idiot Box Productions.
  • Me and Lee – Half-hour scripted series about an unlucky 20-something guy who goes in for back surgery. The procedure goes awry and he meets up with Lee Majors who has the perfect solution and makes him bionic.  Produced by Lionsgate.
  • Culture Shock with Tommy Lee – One-hour reality investigative show features former rocker Tommy Lee in search of rituals, symbols and mysteries surrounding secret societies.  From ITV Studios America.
  • Monster Man – Reality series follows Hollywood monster creator, Cleve Hall and his family business. Gurney Productions produces.
  • Stunts Unlimited – Reality series focuses on the exclusive fraternity of movie stunt artists comprised of Stunts Unlimited. Viewers get a behind-the-scenes look at how stunts are performed for the camera.
  • Hi Tech Hoaxes – Each week two teams battle to see who can execute elaborate hoaxes as sent in by ordinary people who want to trick their friends, family, customers, co-workers, kids or parents.  Produced by North One Television.
  • Dinner with Deepak – Author and spiritual leader Dr. Deepak Chopra dines with and converses with some of the greatest minds and talents of our day.
  • Tyler Shields – Docu-series featuring unusual photographer Tyler Shields and his L.A.-based team as they create worlds that are surprising, shocking and surreal. Produced by RelativityREAL.
  • Overthunk – One-hour series follows two teams of four talented creators as they compete to design, build and execute gigantic chain reaction machines.  Produced by 25/7 Productions.
  • Change the Day You Die – Reality series uses high-tech science to transport participants into the future to face their own self-inflicted death. Each participant will immerse themselves in a 10-week journey where they are transformed via mental and physical challenges designed to reverse their current bad habits and gain back lost years.  From 3 Ball Productions/Eyeworks USA.
  • Imagination Nation – Series follows the innovators behind Hammacher Schlemmer, America’s oldest published catalog offering imaginative and innovative products. Produced by North South Productions.
  • America’s Smartest Kids – Reality competition show where top-level teenagers are challenged to invent a better future while vying for the title of America’s Smartest Kid.

In addition, Syfy previously announced frosh series Being Human and reality competition series Face Off have been renewed.  A second season of Hollywood Treasure will premiere this summer along with new seasons of Warehouse 13, Eureka and Haven.

Syfy’s sister network, Chiller also has a new slate of original programming for 2011 with two original movies, Remains from Steve Niles and Ghoul from Brian Keene.  Chiller further has a new special on the docket, Chiller 13: Horror’s Creepiest Kids produced by Associated Television International.

IFC hosted its 2011-2012 season offerings at a press event in New York City.  First the returns of two freshman series for a 2nd season:   Portlandia  was given a 10-episode order and The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret with a six-episode order.  Portlandia goes into production this summer and debuts the new season in January 2012 while Todd Margaret begins production next month with the sophomore season scheduled to launch this October.  As for new original series:

  • Onion News Network – This “news” series returns for a second season with 16 half-hour episodes in October.  You’re welcome.
  • Commercial Kings – Docu-series about filmmakers and comedians Rhett McLaughlin and Link Neal as they travel across the US developing and producing commercials for local businesses.  Show is inspired by their website.  Produced by Reveille. Premieres June 24 at 10p with 10 half-hour episodes.
  • Young, Broke & Beautiful – Non-fiction series is a travel show featuring writer/blogger Stuart Schuffman (aka Broke-Ass Stuart) as he delves into the underground of American cities to find the hidden, cheap and guarded secrets not found in any guidebook.  Six half-hour episodes premiere June 24 at 1030p.  From 44 Pictures.
  • Whisker Wars – Docu-comedy set in the world of competitive facial hair growers. Really.  Series follows a group of men as they compete in national and international beard and mustache competitions.  Seven half-hour episodes debut August 5 at 10p. From Original Productions, a FremantleMedia Company.
  • Bullet in the Face – Scripted series about a psycho criminal turned cop after a jewelry theft goes wrong. Gunter Vogler is taken in by the police, given a new identity and then is forced to infiltrate his former gang.  Six half-hour episodes will premiere in 2012.  Series is a co-production with Canada’s Just For Laughs Muse Comedy Productions.

At a press breakfast in New York City, Sundance Channel said it will double its original programming hours this year to 75-80 hours, beginning with this lineup of seven new and returning series and two non-fiction series in development.  Sundance characterizes its audience as “curious, adventurous, smart, and they demand the same from their medium.”

Sundance Channel 2011 Original Programming:

  • All On the Line – Previously announced series featuring Joe Zee, the creative director for ELLE.  In this new series, Joe will use his fashion savvy to help struggling fashion designers launch their lines.  Produced by Authentic Entertainment, the eight-episode, one-hour series premieres March 29.
  • Garo Unleashed – NY East Village based fashion designer, Garo works with people looking for show-stopping one-of-a-kind fashions that depict their personalities.  Produced by North South Productions with six one-hour episodes.
  • Love|Lust – Series explores the story behind iconic items such as the bikini, the little black dress, street food to cocktails.  Produced by Sharp Entertainment with 14 one-hour episodes.
  • Quirky – Series centers on the team at Quirky.com, a unique technology company that will design and fabricate one product idea each episode suggested by their online community.  Produced by Sharp Entertainment with six one-hour episodes.
  • Ludo Bites America – Chef Ludo Lefebvre is a 5-star French chef, who along with his business partner/wife, Krissy, travels across the US to reinvent American cuisine in short term pop up restaurants.  Produced by Authentic Entertainment with six one-hour episodes.
  • Shoebox Sessions – Hosted by David Nadelberg, this series witnesses surprising and sometimes embarrassing items found in a celebrity’s mementos box, all providing clues to the person’s personality and growth.  Produced by Relativity Real with ten half-hour episodes.

Two Sundance Channel series in development:

  • Neumont (wt)  Series features Neumont University, a high pressure though high reward technology school for uber-smart kids who are being groomed as the next Zuckerbergs, Gates and Jobs.
  • Diva of Distressed (wt)  Lynn Tilton dubbed as the “Diva of Distressed” takes on the task of saving America’s struggling businesses.  She works with Main Street businesses to get them back on track with stability, pride and hope.

And a final announcement yesterday morning, Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys will return for a second season.

IFC has two other Original Series in development:

  • Untitled Scott Aukerman Variety Project – Scott Aukerman will create and host a series based on the podcast Comedy Death-Ray aiming at alternative comedy fans.
  • Pointless – Kurt Braunohler hosts this improvisational game show series featuring a rotating panel of three comedians who give their most creative, quick-fire answers to a set of random questions to win a variety of stupid prizes.

At the press event for the upfront, Crown Media Holdings, Inc. President/CEO Bill Abbott said the company is repositioning its television and online media assets under a new umbrella name Crown Media Networks, replacing Hallmark Channels.  A new logo was additionally revealed and fresh taglines for each network. The event presented the new programming offerings for both Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movie Channel.

Hallmark Channel: Using the new moniker, “365 Ways to Celebrate” the network will premiere 25 Hallmark Channel Original Movies throughout the 2011-2012 season coinciding with major holidays and comprising 500 hours of original content.  A sampling of the titles include:

  • Oliver’s Ghost – Premieres 4Q 2011 and stars Martin Mull and Rhea Perlman about 11-year old Oliver and his ability to see ghosts.
  • Christmas Returns to Canaan – Premieres 4Q 2011, the sequel to the 2009 movie Christmas in Canaan with Billy Ray Cyrus once again headlining.
  • A Princess For Christmas – Premieres 4Q 2011 and stars Sir Roger Moore and Katie McGrath. A story set in England at Christmastime about a newly-appointed legal guardian who struggles to parent her niece and nephew after the death of their parents.
  • Cancel Christmas – Premieres December 2011 and stars Judd Nelson as Santa Claus who is told because the holiday has become too commercialized and material should be canceled.
  • A Taste of Romance – Premieres 1Q 2012 and stars Teri Polo and James Patrick Stuart as rival restaurant owners.
  • Chasing Leprechauns – Premieres 1Q 2012 and stars Adrian Pasdar as a New York corporate “fixer” who is sent to Ireland to close a deal on a smelting plant construction site that may house leprechauns.
  • The Note 3 – Premieres 2Q 2012 and stars Genie Francis and Ted McGinley in the third installment of one of the network’s highest-rated movie series ever.
  • The Music Teacher – Premieres 3Q 2012 – Hallmark Channel’s first foray into a movie musical about a high school music teacher who mounts a school musical production to raise funds to save the school’s music program.

New Hallmark Channel Original Series:

  • Spirit Table – An inspiring new 13-episode unscripted half-hour series featuring Maya Angelou as she chats with fascinating people at her table. Series will debut on the network in 1Q 2012.

Hallmark Channel series addition:

  • Frasier will begin on the network starting April 8.

Hallmark Channel further presented new original series, returning series and primetime specials as part of the network’s daily lifestyle block, Hallmark Channel Home.  One new series will be introduced:

  • Emeril’s Table – Hallmark Channel Original Series World Premiere in 4Q/date TBA; Chef Emeril Lagasse joins the Hallmark Channel Home lineup with a new cooking series showing viewers how to create delicious menus for family and friends.  52 half-hour episodes.

Returning Hallmark Channel Home original series:

  • The Martha Stewart Show – Season 7 premieres in October with 140 one-hour episodes.
  • Petkeeping with Marc Morrone – Season 2 debuts in January 2012 with 20 new half-hour episodes.

In addition, Hallmark Channel has two Martha Stewart Presents primetime specials, one for Halloween in October (date TBA) and the second for Christmas (premiere date TBA).  Other holiday specials announced will feature a partnership with Hallmark Cards for the network’s first-ever multi-platform integration surrounding the animated character, Jingle The Husky Pup.

Hallmark Movie Channel: “Stories That Connect” is the network’s new tagline. Hallmark Movie Channel, a Nielsen-rated network since second quarter 2010 and now in 40 million homes, says it will increase to 50 million homes in the next 18 months.  The network has eight new original movies lined up for the new season.  Highlights of the Hallmark Movie Channel Original Premiere films include:

  • Finding A Family – Premieres October 15 at 8p starring Kim Delaney in a film based on the true story about Alex, a super-smart teenager who enters foster care after his mother is injured in a car accident and has a dream to attend Harvard.
  • Goodnight For Justice 2 – Premieres in January; executive producer and star Luke Perry reunites with director and friend Jason Priestley in a sequel to Hallmark Movie Channel’s highest-rated film ever. (in development)
  • Love’s Playing Our Song – Premieres in September about a shy though handsome photographer who hires a popular girl to be his dating coach. (in development)

TV One presented its first official Upfront in New York City this year. The network highlighted its new talk/variety series for Black History Month, Way Black When and also confirmed the return of several other series later this year:

  • LisaRaye: The Real McCoy produced by Evolution Media premieres this spring.
  • Donald J. Trump Presents The Ultimate Merger produced by Trump Productions LLC and Juma Entertainment debuts in the summer.
  • Unsung is back with 12 new episodes airing this spring and fall.  A. Smith & Co. produces.
  • Life After premieres 10 new episodes this summer and is produced by K2 Pictures.
  • TV One continues to be the television home of the Trumpet Awards again this year airing in the spring.

In its upfront announcement, Bravo Media boasted continued ratings success with its programming and the gain of 150 new advertisers in 2010 alone. According to IAG Research, Bravo delivers the most affluent, educated and engaged audience in the cable entertainment realm as well as being the top cable network in brand recall.  For its 2011 slate, Bravo is further adding 20% more in original programming hours.  On the innovation front, Bravo also introduces its first integrated transmedia play into its Top Chef franchise. When Top Chef 9 premieres, Bravo will layer the show’s storyline to viewers across mobile, online, tablets, social media and on-air. For its 2011-2012 schedule, Bravo unveiled details on 11 new series pick-ups and 5 returning series.

New series include:

  • Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis  Lewis, known as a neurotic house flipper takes on a new role as a therapist to homeowners.  Lewis will observe homeowners, diagnose their problems and redesign their spaces and their lives in the process. From Authentic Entertainment.
  • It’s a Brad Brad World (wt)  Trendsetter and former assistant to Rachel Zoe, Brad Goreski opens his own business venture and tries to maintain his personal life. Docu-series from Shed Media.
  • The Therapists  Series follows the professional and personal lives of top private therapists in Los Angeles. Produced by Intuitive Entertainment.
  • Mad Fashion  Series follows outrageous celebrity fashion designer and former Project Runway alum Chris March and his eccentric team as they create one-of-kind designs for their loyal customers. From Matt Westmore Media and No Regrets Entertainment.
  • Million Dollar Listing NY  After revealing expensive properties in California, this new series version spotlights luxury properties on the East Coast.  Produced by World of Wonder.
  • Miss Advised  Documentary project follows three single relationship experts on and off the job.  From RelativityREAL and Blondie Girl Productions.
  • Most Eligible: Dallas  Docu-series follows a group of Texas socialites as they date and look for true love.  Produced by Pink Sneakers.
  • Project Soulmate  New York matchmaker Lori Zaslow is determined to find love for her Manhattan-based clients while maintaining her own successful marriage and juggling motherhood. From Intuitive Entertainment.
  • Ready to Wear (wt)  Series follows four eclectic employees at the Second Time Around high-end consignment shop in New York City.  Leftfield Pictures is producing.
  • Roble and Co.  Chef Roble Ali is used to cooking for Red Carpet events and demanding celebrities and now he is running his own catering business in Brooklyn with his older sister as his business partner. Red Line Films produces.
  • Tabatha Takes Over  Tabatha Coffey is ready to transform more small businesses, not just salons, in this new series taking her across the country. Reveille produces.

Bravo is renewing five series offering second season renewals to Top Chef Just Desserts and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills; a third season pick up of Bethenny Ever After; and season four nods to The Real Housewives of Atlanta and Tabatha’s Salon Takeover.  Additionally, Bravo’s Rocco’s Dinner Party is set to launch this summer.

Oxygen ushered in its upfront presentation saying the network will increase its original programming by 26% in 2011.  Oxygen has a few new originals, a handful of new projects in development along with several returning and new series.
Three new Oxygen original series with premiere dates:

  • Tori & Dean: sTORIbook Weddings – Series premieres tomorrow at 10p from World of Wonder Productions.
  • The World According to Paris – Docu-series follows Paris Hilton and her most important people. Premieres June 1 at 10p from A. Smith & Co.
  • The Glee Project – Ten-episode competition series from Ryan Murphy, the creator and executive producer of FOX’s Glee where talented performers compete for a guest starring role on Glee.  Series opens June 12 at 9p produced by Ryan Murphy Television and Embassy Row.

Oxygen’s new series in development:

  • Maids of Drama (wt) – Each episode features an out-of-control bridal party who is racked with jealousy and jockeying for position all under the veil of friendship.  Produced by Half Yard Productions.
  • Lost Angels (wt) – Chloe Lattanzi, the daughter of Olivia Newton-John is the center of this series as she explores the Hollywood life in the shadow of her mother’s fame.  FremantleMedia North America, Inc. produces.
  • My Post Grad Life (wt) – Series documents two groups of girls in their post-college life – one group based in Boston while the other group is in Philadelphia. In each city, the girls live together, pooling their money and courage while each individually is trying to make it on their own.  Half Yard Productions is producing.
  • Love Scouts – Matchmaker Olivia “Liv” Alexander and her team of scouts work in Hollywood trying to hook up young hip singles with their high-profile clients.  T Group Productions is producing.
  • Best Ink – Competition series follows 12 accomplished tattoo artists as they compete for cash and the title of “Best In.” From Bunim-Murray Productions.

Oxygen returning series:

  • Hair Battle Spectacular – Season two debuts this summer, produced by 3 Ball Productions.
  • Love Games: Bad Girls Need Love Too – New season premieres April 18 at 10p produced by Bunim-Murray Productions.

truTV new projects:

  • Semi-Pro (wt) – Series follows a group of men who participate in a semi-pro football team. From NFL Films.
  • MotoClash (wt) – The network takes a close-up look at the World MotoClash race, the longest and most dangerous motorcycle race ever. Produced by RD Independent Productions with executive producers Tony Scott, Ridley Scott, Mary Lisio and David Zucker of Scott Free.
  • Guinness World Records (wt) – Guinness World Record holding brothers, Craig and Paul Pumphrey coach others on how to break records.  From High Noon Entertainment.
  • Impractical Jokers – Series centers on four lifelong friends who strive to embarrass each other in public by using hidden cameras.  Produced by NorthSouth Productions.
  • Chill – Series profiles Joe O’Donoghue or “Joey Ice” an ice sculptor and his team as they create over-the-top ice sculptures.  From Entertainment One Television and Left/Right.
  • South Beach Tow – Series follows the family-owned Tremont Towing business located in South Beach.  Produced by Nuyorican Productions and Bodega Pictures.
  • Hollywood Taxi – Mike Grasso owns a fleet of 290 taxi cabs operating in Hollywood.  From Irwin Entertainment.
  • Bear Swamp Recovery – Sicilian family owns a New Jersey-based repossession company, the Bear Swamp Recovery repossessing items from careless vacationers in the summer.  Bischoff-Hervey Entertainment produces.

Acquired series for truTV:

  • truTV picked up the off-network exclusive cable rights to Wipeout produced by Endemol USA.  Wipeout first premiered on ABC in 2008 and the series will debut on truTV this fall.

Renewals and episodes extensions for existing truTV series:

  • Hardcore Pawn – Series granted a fourth season centered on the large Detroit-based pawn shop and the family who runs it. From Zodiak USA.
  • Black Gold – The network renewed the series for a fourth season about the roughneck crews in the oil fields of Texas.  Original Productions, a FremantleMedia company produces.
  • Full Throttle Saloon – Viewers will experience more of motorcycles and mayhem at the annual biker rally in Sturgis, SD during the series’ third season. Produced by A. Smith & Co. Productions.
  • Lizard Lick Towing – truTV orders more episodes of the series’ frosh season featuring the towing and repo company based in Lizard Lick, NC.  Zodiak USA produces.

The Style Network incorporates a variety of topics in the network’s new development slate for the 2011-2012 season.  First up, though are two new series joining the lineup this year and a twist on an established series:

  • Big Rich Texas – One-hour docu-series with 10 episodes takes viewers on the inside of the elite Dallas social scene following five rich and competitive mothers and their spoiled daughters.  Series produced by Fly on the Wall Productions premieres this July.
  • Glam Fairy – Spinoff of the network’s Jerseylicious series, this makeover format follows energetic makeup artist, Alexa Prisco.  After exiting the Gatsby Salon, Alexa establishes a new business, The Glam Factory where she uses her signature New Jersey style to transform women with new looks.  Produced by Endemol USA, the series will kick-off in October.
  • How Do I Look?: The Search for the Worst Dressed in America – Style takes its popular franchise with host Jeannie Mai and hits the road traveling the country to find the worst fashion catastrophes.  Once the winner is revealed, the person travels to Hollywood for the ultimate makeover.  The new multi-part event will air this September. How Do I Look? is produced by The Style Network.

Style Network series in development:

  • Birth Moms – Docu-series set inside a residential-style adoption center in Orem, Utah where expectant mothers complete their pregnancies before giving up their babies for adoption.
  • The Amandas – Amanda LeBlanc from Birmingham, Alabama helms this home makeover show where she and her team of other “Amandas” organize people’s homes.
  • Single With 7 – Series centers on L.A. radio DJ Yesi Ortiz, who is also “mom” to her seven nieces and nephews. Yesi has taken on the responsibility of raising her sister’s kids who were put into foster care when her sister was sent to prison.
  • Lifestyle Weekly Series – Weekly half-hour series co-hosted by Adrianne Curry, Vivica A. Fox, Nick Verreos and Ali Fedotowsky who will take on timely style topics aiming at the network’s viewers.
  • Are You Dressed? – Part game show, part fashion show, this series ambushes shoppers after entering their dressing rooms with on-the-spot trivia questions where they can win cash and prizes.
  • Miss Fit – Series set inside Boston’s Miss Fit Club, a women’s only fitness club managed by Katie Boyd, a former beauty queen.
  • The Riveras – Docu-series set in Queens, NY featuring The Riveras, a Puerto Rican family who owns two neighborhood dance studios.
  • The Look for Less – Style Network is bringing back the franchise and giving the show its own makeover utilizing social media and YouTube.
  • Makeover Madness – A team of experts in hair, beauty and fashion try to break world records with the most makeovers in one sitting.  Cat Deeley will host this new series.
  • Maureen Hancock’s Ghost Town – Maureen is a working New England mom who talks to the dead and has a mission of transforming people’s lives by helping clients overcome a variety of issues.

HGTV continues to help homeowners reimagine their homes and for the 2011 season the network is adding several new series.  HGTV’s programming lineup includes:

  • Room Crashers  Todd Davis searches stores across the US for weekend diyers who can use some design help.  Premieres June 4 at 12p.
  • My Yard Goes Disney  Half-hour series has HGTV partnering with Disney Parks to surprise lucky homeowners with a backyard makeover inspired by Disney characters and more.  Premieres June 6 at 8p.
  • House Hunters on Vacation  In each episode, host Taniya Nayak will send one family on trip of a lifetime to visit their exotic destination of choice to tour three dream homes and they will get to stay in one for a week.  Premieres June 6 at 830p.
  • HGTV’d  Series features HGTV in an 18-wheeler showing up on the doorsteps of homeowners who receive a dream makeover. Tanika Ray hosts.  Premieres June 6 at 9p.
  • HGTV Design Star  Popular one-hour reality competition returns for a sixth season with 12 new aspiring designers as they battle for their own show on HGTV.  Premieres July 11.
  • Home By Novogratz  Series follows husband and wife design team of Robert and Cortney Novogratz as they juggle seven children and many clients.  Premieres July 28.
  • Run My Makeover  New interactive series incorporates HGTV.com where viewers can see photos and videos of a homeowner’s room and add their input on the design elements. Hosted by Alexi Panos.  Premieres this July.
  • Dina’s Party (wt)  Previously announced party and special events planning series features Real Housewives of New Jersey’s Dina Manzo and her event company, Design Affairs.  Premieres in September.
  • All American Handyman  Competition series challenges 20 contestants to find out which one is the best non-professional handyman. HGTV’s Mile Holmes and Scott McGillivray serve as two of the three experts along with a weekly special guest judge. Premieres this September.
  • The High Low Project  Sabrina Soto hosts this series where she replaces high-budget items in a room with low-budget items that look expensive.  Premieres in September.
  • Selling LA  Series follows three real estate firms as they work in the competitive and high-end real estate world of L.A. Premieres in October.

Between Food Network and Cooking Channel the two networks are introducing 20 new series and serving up 22 returning series.

  • Eat St.  New series featuring host and comedian James Cunningham exploring the vast array of street food premiered this week on Tuesday at 8p.
  • Unique Sweets  Series visits unique eateries across the US creating exciting and delectable desserts.  Premieres April 24 at 1030p.
  • The Originals with Emeril  Chef Emeril Lagasse honors iconic food establishments visiting a new city in each episode and discovering three historic eateries.  Lagasse discovers where Boston cream pie originates along with the French dip sandwich in Los Angeles. Premieres May 5 at 1030p.
  • From Spain With Love  Host Annie Sibonney serves up the diverse culinary culture of Spain on location throughout Spain’s many regions.  Premieres May 27 at 9p.
  • Hook, Line & Dinner  Expert fisherman and foodie, Ben Sargent takes a coastal road trip visiting the best clam shacks, lobster pounds and chowder pots and more.  Premieres June 7 at 1030p.

Cooking Channel’s new daytime series:

  • Ching-He Huang Series (wt)  Food entrepreneur, Ching-He Huang and host of the series Chinese Food Made Easy helms a new series set in San Francisco, the home of much celebrated Chinese cuisine.  Premieres in July.
  • The Perfect 3  The network’s popular personalities highlight three perfect dishes in 13 iconic categories from burgers and brownies to sandwiches and salads.  Premieres in July.
  • Baking Made Easy  UK chef/baker Lorraine Pascale offers her passion and knowledge on baking along with sweet and savory recipes.  Premieres fall 2011.

Cooking Channel offers up numerous returning series

  • Unique Eats  Season three launch April 3 at 10p.
  • From the Kitchens Of . . .  New episodes launch this spring.
  • Chuck’s Day Off  Series follows Chef Chuck Hughes during his day off with season two opening May 1 at 11a.
  • Kelsey’s Essentials  Season two returns this June.
  • Food(ography)  A third season with Mo Rocca as host showcasing cultural food themes is back this July.
  • Everyday Exotic  A sophomore season returns July 9 at 1230p.
  • Bitchin’ Kitchen  Nadia G. is back offering her blend of humor and food for a second season starting July 20 at 10p.
  • Hungry Girl  Season two opens August 6 at 4p.
  • Brunch @ Bobby’s  Season two featuring Chef Bobby Flay begins this August.
  • Rachael Ray’s Week In a Day  A sophomore season slated to open this August.
  • Extra Virgin  Actress Debi Mazar and husband Gabriele Corcos are back for a second season this fall.
  • Spice Goddess  A second season is on tap for this October.

Food Network’s new series in primetime:

  • Have Cake, Will Travel  Cake decorator Ashley Vicos and her team travel the US as they create extraordinary cakes for special events such as New York’s fashion week to Mardi Gras in New Orleans.  Premieres April 26 at 9p.
  • Best In Smoke  Six top barbecue masters meet in New York City to compete for a $50,000 grand prize and the bragging rights to the title “Best In Smoke.”  Series opens May 8 at 10p; following the premiere the series will air at 9p.
  • Crave  Host Troy Johnson, food critic and journalist in San Diego admits he is obsessed with food and he’ll travel anywhere and try anything in the pursuit of a new culinary find or trend.  Premieres June 20 at 10p.
  • Heat Seekers  Chefs Aaron Sanchez and Roger Mooking taste-test the spiciest foods in the country from Mexican and Korean to Indian and more. Series launches this July.
  • Tough Cookies  Multi-generational family business Crazy Susan’s led by sisters Susan and Linda bake cookies while dealing with their chaotic family.  Premieres in July.
  • Chef Hunter (wt)  In each episode, chef recruiter, Carrie McCully brings together four aspiring chefs to compete for an executive chef position at a prestigious restaurant.  Series opens this August.
  • Sugar High  Cake “ace” Duff Goldman is back in a new series as he journeys across America to find the best desserts from Baked Alaska to hot fudge sundaes in Dallas.  Series premieres August 8 at 1030p.
  • Halloween Wars  Five teams of cake decorators, candy makers and pumpkin carvers compete to prove they are the best in Halloween treats.  Series opens in October.
  • Supersizers  A gastronomic trip through our American past, two food adventures go back in time and explore historic foods of a bygone age such as food in the Old West to Plymouth Rock for the first Thanksgiving feast.  Series rolls out in January 2012.

Food Network’s new daytime series:

  • Pioneer Woman  Blogger/author Ree Drummond shares her version of home cooking.  Series bows in August.
  • Food Network Star Winner Series (wt)  The winner of season seven of Food Network Star launches their own six-episode cooking series.  Series premieres August.
  • Tricia Yearwood Series (wt)  Country superstar and cookbook author Tricia Yearwood invites viewers into her kitchen for hospitality and family recipes.  Series debuts in September.

Food Network presents ten returning primetime series:

  • 24 Hour Restaurant Battle  Host and chef Scott Conant is back for a sophomore season April 21 at 10p.
  • Chopped  Host Ted Allen continues to challenge rising chefs in this competition series up for its seventh turn starting May 3 at 10p.
  • Food Network Star  The network’s most popular series is back for a seventh season beginning June 5 at 9p.  Chef Bobby Flay continues as host and judge and is joined by Food Network’s Giada de Laurentiis as judge along with network executives.
  • Cupcake Wars  Competition series where four top cupcake bakers square off is back this June for a third season.
  • Restaurant: Impossible  Chef Robert Irvine tries to save America’s restaurants from failure in only two days with $10,000.  Season two premieres in July.
  • Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives  Guy Fieri hits the road visiting more “greasy spoon” restaurants throughout America.  Season 13 debuts this August.
  • The Great Food Truck Race  Tyler Florence hosts this competition series featuring chefs embarking on creating food from trucks.  Season two premieres August 14 at 10p; following the debut the series will air at 9p.
  • The Best Thing I Ever Ate  Various Food Network stars dish on their favorite dishes.  Season six opens in September.
  • Next Iron Chef: Celebrity (wt)  Alton Brown is back as host in the battle where 10 American accomplished chefs compete to join the elite culinary society comprised of the Iron Chefs.  A fourth season debuts October 30 at 9p.
  • Worst Cooks in America  Hopeless cooks are transformed into kitchen magicians in this boot-camp style cooking competition series returning for a third season in February 2012.

With just four months under its belt, OWN is participating in the Upfront announcing six new series:

  • Confronting … – Series documents the mediation process involving victim and offender with the hope of achieving closure.  Produced by Relativity Real.
  • I Owe You My Life – Real-life stories of everyday people who become heroes by performing death-defying actions.  Produced by Skip Film.
  • Louie Spence Dance Project – British world-renowned choreographer Louie Spence comes to Manhattan to revamp the program at Broadway Dance Center.  From Kinetic Content.
  • My Mom and Me – Series examines unusual mom-daughter relationships where normal boundaries are challenged.  Produced by Firecracker Films.
  • Sweetie Pies – Docu-series profiles former backup singer and Ikette, Robbie Montgomery as she opens a second location of her famous soul food restaurant, Sweetie Pies.  From Pilgrim Films & Television.
  • Unfaithful: Stories of Betrayal – Each episode features couples who have suffered and survived infidelity in their marriages.  True Entertainment produces.

In addition at its upfront event, OWN will premiere the new series Oprah’s Encore comprised of 60 new episodes where Oprah Winfrey reminisces on the most memorable moments of her daily talk show, The Oprah Winfrey Show over its 25-year run.  Oprah’s Encore will show footage of past episodes and Winfrey will offer insight into what she was thinking when the show was taped and offer fresh interviews.

OWN granted second renewals to four series: Ask Oprah’s All Stars, Enough Already! with Peter Walsh, In The Bedroom With Dr. Laura Berman and Oprah Presents Master Class.

Penn & Teller’s Secrets of the Universe – Using amazing stunts, Penn & Teller explore the secrets of the universe by asking such questions as: can you lift a 5,000 pound car with human hair? or did ancient aboriginal Australians find a cure for snoring? Each of the six episodes offer up to ten stories with one of them a lie. A multiplatform audience will play along to guess the fake.  Produced by Discovery Studios, the series launches this fall.

  • Best in the Business – Each episode highlights three average American jobs such as shelf-stockers and sheep-shearers and pits two people in the same profession against each other in this battle of job-skill supremacy.
  • Swamp Brothers – Brothers Robbie Keszey, an exotic animal expert and Stephen Keszey, a former city guy learning the trade, team to run the Glades Herp Farms, Florida’s largest reptile sanctuary and dealership.
  • Life on a Wire – Series centers on Nik Wallenda, part of a seven generation family of daredevils and circus performers.

Returning series for Discovery Channel: Deadliest Catch, American Chopper, Dirty Jobs, Man vs. Wild, Mythbusters, Man Woman Wild, Dual Survival, Storm Chasers, Auction Kings, Hogs Gone Wild, Swamp Loggers and American Loggers.  Discovery Channel will also continue with its annual Shark Week during the summer.

The network serves up more shows falling in the topics relevant to its viewers: matrimony, food and family.  New series and pilots include:

  • Baby’s First Day – Series goes inside the Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Maternity Ward in Nashville, where every day the life-changing event of childbirth is witnessed.  Premiering 2Q 2011.
  • Big Fat Gypsy Weddings UK (wt) – Network acquired this hit docu-series from the UK produced by Firecracker Films.  Series documents the community of gypsies living in Britain around their cultural traditions of a wedding.  Premiering 2Q 2011.
  • Gypsyville (wt) – Also produced by Firecracker Films, TLC commissioned this series in development examining the lives of gypsies and travellers in America.  Premiering 1Q 2012.
  • Extreme Christmas Trees (wt) – Series travels to cities and towns to view the most extremely decorated trees ever created. Debuts 4Q 2011.
  • Extreme Couponing – “Super couponers” share their pursuit of extraordinary deals.  Series premiered this 2Q.
  • Homecoming (wt) – Billy Ray Cyrus will host this series witnessing soldiers reuniting with their loved ones. Debuts 3Q 2011.
  • I Kid with Brad Garrett – One-hour series hosted by Brad Garrett documents the funny and surprising answers from kids as Garrett talks to them about many subjects from politics to religion.  Premiering 2Q 2011.
  • NY Ink – Newest series in the franchise features Ami James as he exits Miami to set up a tattoo shop in New York City.  Premieres 2Q 2011.
  • Pawn Queens – Previously announced new series featuring Minda and Nikki who operate a pawn shop catering to women located outside of Chicago. Premieres 2Q 2011.
  • Off the Rez – Native American mother and daughter leave the Reservation to pursue the daughter’s dream of winning a scholarship and becoming a basketball star. Debuts 2Q 2011.
  • Randy to the Rescue – Former star of Say Yes to the Dress, Randy Fenoli will travel to different cities in a truck packed with wedding dresses and Randy will help numerous brides-to-be find the perfect dress and their entire “head to hem” look.  One-hour series rolls out in 2012.
  • Say Yes to the Dress: Bridesmaids – Filmed at Bridals by Lori, each episode showcases three bridal parties in varying stages of finding the right gowns for all.  Debuts 3Q 2011.
  • Say Yes to the Dress: Randy Knows Best – Half-hour series features Randy Fenoli as he presents his top ten tips on a variety of bridal related categories. Premieres 2Q 2011.
  • Spouse vs. House – Makeover series with a twist where one half of the couple moves out, leaving their partner to design and make all DIY decisions by themselves. Premieres 2Q 2011.

Known as the “Surprisingly Human” network, Animal Planet introduces many new series and brings back 12 shows.
New series:

  • Detroit Animal Tattoo (wt) – Detroit-based Tom Renshaw, a world-famous tattoo artist specializes in photo-realistic wildlife tattoos.
  • Finding Bigfoot – Four eccentric and passionate members of the Bigfoot Field Research Organization attempt to find the elusive Bigfoot.
  • Hillbilly Handfishin’ – Previously announced series follows hillbilly Skipper Bivins as catches catfish using no fishing rods or hooks.
  • Lion Kings of Las Vegas (wt) – Las Vegas family, the Fercos raise and train big cats to entertain audiences.
  • My Extreme Animal Phobia – One-hour series explores how animals can be a source of fear for some people.
  • Ned Bruha: Skunk Whisperer – Ned Bruha based in Tulsa, Oklahoma humanely captures wild animals that have invaded people’s homes.
  • Rat Busters NYC (wt) – New York’s toughest exterminators Jimmy Tallman and Michael Morales of Magic Pest Control deal with major rat infestations in the Big Apple.
  • Romance Is Dead (wt) – Based in Romance, Arkansas is a taxidermy shop where people bring their beloved pets to be preserved for all time by taxidermist Daniel Ross.
  • Saved – Series recounts true stories where animals have saved people’s lives though not in the traditional way.
  • Swamp City – A team known as Venom One battles snakes, alligators, lizards and more found in yards in South Florida.
  • Sweet Avenger (wt) – Previously announced new series featuring vegan baker and owner of Vegan Treats, Danielle Konya.
  • Tanked (wt) – Previously announced new series follows two brothers-in-law as they operate the largest aquarium manufacturing company in the US.

Animal Planet also introduces the six-part reality web series, Dog Park highlighting a diverse cast of opinionated people during their daily excursions to a busy dog park in New York City.

Animal Planet brings back a dozen series: Confessions: Animal Hoarding, Dogs 101/Cats 101/Pets 101, Fatal Attractions, I Shouldn’t Be Alive, Infested!, It’s Me of the Dog: Season 4, Monsters Inside Me, Must Love Cats, Pit Boss, Pit Bulls & Parolees: Season 3, River Monsters: Season 4 and Whale Wars: Season 4.: For the new upcoming season, the network takes on the motto “So Successful … it’s Criminal” and debuts several new original series including the network’s first docu-soap:
Big Law: Deputy Butterbean – Series features former super heavyweight boxer, Eric Esch who fought under the name of Butterbean and now serves as a deputy in his hometown in Alabama.
Investigation Discovery’s new original series:

  • Real Crime/Reel Story (wt) – Series uncovers the truth behind popular crime-and-justice movies.
  • Homicide Hunter: Lt. Joe Kenda (wt) – A veteran homicide investigator in Colorado, Kenda relates vivid memories of murders that he investigated that still haunt him.
  • Real Streets Miami (wt) – Viewers get an inside look at all the crazy local criminals operating in Miami.
  • Hostage: Do or Die (wt) – Series offers a collection of stories told from the perspective of the hostage negotiators, victims, witnesses and sometimes the criminals themselves.
  • Hunting Justice with M. William Phelps (wt) – Two criminal investigators attempt to piece together a killer’s profile by reconstructing their crimes.
  • Crimes of Passion (wt) – True stories of ultimate betrayal where sociopaths and manipulators masquerade as charming and harmless love interests.
  • Deadly Sins – True stories of everyday people who commit sinful crimes.
  • Unraveled: Countdown to a Kill – Suspenseful series tells of the fateful relationship between a killer and a victim as their paths intertwine.

Investigation Discovery returns a slew of original series: Stolen Voices, Buried Secrets, Disappeared, On the Case with Paula Zahn, Stalked: Someone’s Watching, Who the (Bleep) Did I Marry?, I (Almost) Got Away With It, Nothing Personal, Sins & Secrets, The Will: Family Secrets Revealed, True Crime with Aphrodite Jones, Behind Mansion Walls, I Married a Mobster, Cuff Me If You Can, Facing Evil, Cops & Coyotes, FBI: Criminal Pursuit, Nightmare Next Door, I Escaped: Real Prison Breaks, Deadly Women, Wicked Attraction and Devil You Know.

Soon after rebranding with a new name, logo and on-air look, SCIENCE presents four new series for the 2011-2012 season:

  • Prophets of Science Fiction – One-hour, eight-episode series hosted by Ridley Scott who reveals the secrets of science fiction’s founding fathers such as Isaac Asimov, Gene Roddenberry among others. Premieres 4Q 2011.
  • Agent of Invention – Series features the man who can make a backyard inventor’s dreams come true.  Premieres 2Q 2012.
  • Will Wright Future Project – Gaming genius Will Wright goes back and forth in time to see the effects of important events in our collective history.  Premieres 3Q 2012.
  • Weird Travel – Series exposes some of the strangest subcultures found anywhere. Premieres in 2012.

SCIENCE brings back a number of series:

  • An Idiot Abroad 2: The Bucket List – A second season with eight one-hour episodes featuring Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant as they send their reluctant friend Karl Pilkington to experience adventures.  Series produced for SCIENCE by RiSK Productions and Mentorn International. Premiers 1Q 2012.
  • Meteorite Men – Season three continues to follow meteorite hunters, Geoff and Steve during eight one-hour episodes.  Debuts 4Q 2011.
  • How It’s Made – Season 11 with 26 half-hour episodes rolls out in 4Q 2011.
  • Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman – A third season explores the deepest mysteries of existence with host Morgan Freeman. Premieres 3Q 2012.
  • Mantracker – A sixth season returns 3Q 2012.

The network announced its slate for the 2011-2012 season:

  • Dr. G Medical Examiner – A sixth season with six one-hour episodes follows Jan “Dr. G” Garavaglia as she investigates mysterious case files.  Produced by Atlas Media.
  • My Secret Body – Series with 12 half-hour episodes enters the emotional journey of people who cannot accept themselves and their bodies.
  • Bizzare ER – Series reveals shocking and remarkable real-life emergency room cases. Series with 40 half-hour episodes is produced by Maverick Television.
  • Teen Tamer – Behavioral specialist Lorrine Marer works with challenging teens.  Series with five one-hour episodes is from talkback Thames.
  • My Teen’s A Nightmare: I’m Moving Out – Overwrought parents catch a break when teen expert Sarah Newton moves in for four days to straighten out belligerent teens.  ITV Studios is behind this eight-episode one-hour series.

Discovery Communications also said it will form a new network targeting upscale men called Velocity in fourth quarter this year.  Velocity is an all hi-def network designed to replace the present HD Theater network which makes Velocity available in nearly 40 million homes at launch.

  • The Hub, the kids-centered cable channel that replaced Discovery Kids in October, will unveil nine new series at its upfront presentation today, including Secret Millionaire’s Club, a series of animated specials featuring Warren Buffett as a secret adviser to a group of kids who learn about business. Secret Millionaire’s Club, from Andy Heyward’s A Square, runs as a Web series on AOL Kids. Also among Hub’s new series is Majors & Minors, a reality singing competition from songwriter Evan Bogart and producers Tim Bogart and Gary Randall, featuring 16 young performers vying for a recording deal with RCA/Jive. Also newly announced by The Hub, a joint venture of Discovery Communications and Hasbro, is The Aquabats Super Show, featuring the rock band, and a slew of series based on Hasbro toy brands, including Blythe Loves The Littlest Pet Shop, Clue, The Game of Life, Kaijudo: Rise of the Duel Masters, Scrabble Showdown and Transformers offshoot Rescue Bots.
  • Additionally, The Hub, which averages 107,000 viewers in primetime, has acquired game show Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?, which aired on Fox, and has renewed 10 series: The Adventures of Chuck & Friends, Animal Mechanicals, Dan Vs., Family Game Night, My Little Pony Friendship is Magic, Pound Puppies, R.L. Stine’s The Haunting Hour: The Series,  Strawberry Shortcake’s Berry Bitty Adventures, Transformers Prime and The WotWots. Here are descriptions of The Hub’s new series:
  • “The Aquabats Super Show” (Hub Original Series)
  • From the creators of “Yo Gabba Gabba” comes this quirky comedy adventure show featuring the popular rock band The Aquabats.  A hybrid of concert footage, live-action skits and animation, the Aquabats battle evil with music and superhero powers unlike any seen before.  The Aquabats are a touring band with five albums currently released. Produced by FremantleMedia Enterprises and The Magic Store.
  • “Blythe Loves The Littlest Pet Shop” (Hub Original Series, working title)
  • Inspired by the beloved “Littlest Pet Shop” brand, Blythe moves to the city and discovers that her new apartment is where her neighbors’ pets come to play when their owners are away.  In this animated series, Blythe befriends the pets and introduces them to a world of adventures just outside their door. Produced by Hasbro Studios.
  • “Clue” (Hub Original Miniseries)
  • Inspired by the iconic family game brand, this live-action series features six teens who are brought together when they believe they’ve witnessed a terrible crime.  As a team, they discover conspiracy theories and cover-ups dating back centuries!  They must work together to solve one mystery, only to realize that they may have opened a Pandora’s Box. Produced by Hasbro Studios.
  • “The Game of Life” (Hub Original Series)
  • The live-action family game show “The Game of Life” will be presented in an entirely new way as each family team gets a chance at the iconic spinner and hops in the car for a one-of-a-kind journey through a larger-than-life virtual world.  Hosted by comedian Frank Nicotero (co-host of “The Sharon Osbourne Show,” “Street Smarts,” and Yahoo! TV’s “Primetime in No Time”). Produced by Hasbro Studios.
  • “Kaijudo: Rise of the Duel Masters” (Hub Original Series, working title)
  • In this animated series inspired by the wildly popular trading card game, “Duel Masters,” a 14-year-old boy discovers a secret world in which mind-blowing creatures rule!  These creatures harness special powers that if unleashed, could destroy the world as we know it.  It is up to the boy to master his abilities in the ancient art of Kaijudo to protect their world and his own. Produced by Hasbro Studios.
  • “Majors & Minors” (Hub Original Series, working title)
    This groundbreaking reality series follows 16 talented young performers as they are mentored by the biggest and most established artists in the music industry.   While no one is ever voted off, one lucky “star-in-the-making’ will claim the final prize of a recording deal with the RCA/Jive label group and an opportunity to be featured in a cross-country concert tour.   Among the musical artists already scheduled to participate are Leona Lewis, Jordin Sparks, Sean Kingston and Ryan Tedder (of One Republic). From Evan Bogart, the songwriting hit-maker for music stars Rihanna and Beyonce, and top TV producers Tim Bogart and Gary A. Randall, the series is produced by The Boardwalk Entertainment Group in partnership with Sony Music’s RCA/Jive Label Group and BMI.
  • “Rescue Bots” (Hub Original Series, working title)
  • Inspired by the iconic “Transformers” brand, a group of Autobots, too young to protect humanity alongside Optimus Prime and his team, are partnered with a close-knit human family of first responders.  Together, they learn teamwork and heroism alongside their new human friends in this animated series produced by Hasbro Studios.
  • “Scrabble Showdown” (Hub Original Series)
  • The world’s most popular word game comes to life in this new game show in which families use teamwork to solve a variety of word games and puzzles that test their speed, spelling and vocabulary for points and prizes. The live-action series is hosted by Justin Willman (“Hubworld,” Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars”). Produced by Hasbro Studios.
  • “Secret Millionaire’s Club” (Hub Original Series of Specials)
    The Hub will air four half-hour specials of Warren Buffett’s “Secret Millionaire’s Club,” a new animated series created by one of the most successful investors in the world. Warren Buffett is a secret advisor to a group of kids who learn about business and how the world around them works. Through a series of adventures, kids learn basic business principles, and discover that the most valuable investment they can make is an investment in themselves. Created in partnership with and voiced by Mr. Buffett himself. Produced by A Squared Entertainment and Andy Heyward, former CEO of DIC Entertainment.

BET: The network continues its focus on original scripted content with a new sitcom:

  • Reed Between the Lines  Two married professionals, Alex an English professor and Carla, a psychologist juggle modern married life along with being parents to teenage twins and an outspoken 7-year old daughter.  Tracee Ellis Ross (Girlfriends), Malcolm-Jamal Warner (The Cosby Show), Anna Maria Horsford (Amen) and Melissa De Sousa (The Best Man) star in BET’s original scripted comedy.  Series will premiere 4Q 2011.

Next year, BET debuts a new series about Hip-Hop:

  • The Message: The History of Hip-Hop  Four-part series examines the pop culture phenomenon of Hip-Hop over the last 30 years.  Series scheduled to premiere 3Q 2012.

BET returns six series to its schedule:

  • 106 & Park  The series continues after ten years and more than 2000 episodes hosted by Terrence and Rocsi. New interactive segments are added for the new season.
  • The Mo’Nique Show  Late night series is back for a third season hosted by Mo’Nique.
  • The Wendy Williams Show  Hour-long talk show hosted by Wendy Williams.
  • The Game  Scripted comedy is going into its fifth season slated to premiere 1Q 2012.
  • Let’s Stay Together  BET recently announced the second season renewal of this original series scheduled to premiere 1Q 2012.
  • Sunday’s Best  The gospel competition show is hosted by Kirk Franklin with celebrity judges Pastor Donnie McClurkin and Mary Mary.  New season scheduled to premiere 2Q 2011.

Centric serves up four returning series for its schedule:

  • The Hot 10 Countdown  Chuck Nice hosts this countdown show aimed at the adult contemporary Centric audience.
  • Soul Train Awards  The iconic brand is scheduled to premiere 4Q 2011.
  • As Written  Viewers get an up-close look at today’s soul singers as they reveal their creative process for new projects.
  • Inside  Series escorts viewers into the lives of today’s musical masters who have transformed the musical landscape.
  • At FX’s upfront party in New York, the network’s president John Landgraf announced a third-season renewal for Archer. The animated comedy has received a 16-episode order, with three episodes slated to run behind It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia in the fall and the rest airing in early 2012.
  • Additionally, FX is planning to expand its current portfolio of five comedy series. A sixth half-hour series will launch in early 2012, with Townies as a strong candidate. The animated comedy was created by three It’s Always Sunny writers: David Hornsby and Scott Marder & Rob Rosell. It centers on two earnest yet misguided 15-year-old best friends who have no parental supervision, and they are left to raise themselves through the most awkward years of their lives.
  • On the drama side, where FX suffered recent setbacks with Terriers and Lights Out, the network plans to launch a new hourlong series in the fall, “likely” Ryan Murphy-Brad Falchuk’s American Horror starring Connie Britton, which is now casting the pilot. Another new drama series will premiere in the winter, with pilots Outlaw Country and Powers in the running. (The Nashville-set Outlaw Country was delivered some time ago, while Powers, based on the comics, is yet to go into production.) Coincidentally, both pilots are directed by Michael Dinner.

Cartoon Network unveils its commitment to franchise building for its 2011-12 season at the network’s annual ad sales upfront presentation at Jazz at Lincoln Center in NYC.  To bolster its franchise efforts the network plans to introduce 13 new animated series, including DreamWorks Animation SKG‘s new CG animated series How to Train your Dragon, and two new animated series, welcome back 19 current series, debut a new live-action comedy, Level Up, in the form of a TV movie and then series.  Additionally, Cartoon Network with its partners Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment will launch DC Nation, a new multi-platform block featuring exclusive branded content, in 2012 with the new program Green Lantern: The Animated Series.  DreamWorks Animation’s CEO/Co-founder Jeffrey Katzenberg made an appearance to talk about the How to Train Your Dragon series, and in addition the movie sequel (2014) he also mentioned a new live show based on the franchise is in the works.  The network also announced that Cartoon Network’s Hall of Game sports award show with its partner IMG Media will be back for a second go in 2012.  To get the upfront moving The Ice King, a character from Pendleton Ward’s animated series Adventure Time, explained the true meaning of the upfront season explaining, “…you lock the people that are most important to you in a room, and you tell them things.  It means you love them!!”

New Cartoon Network series/specials include:

  • The Problem Solverz – an animated series with a unique visual style, which follows the adventures of three friends, who own a detective agency, as they solve mysteries of the universe.  Created by artist Ben Jones, The Problem Solverz is set to premiere Monday, April 4, at 8:45p.
  • Secret Mountain Fort Awesome – the animated series revolves around a group of monsters that live underground and do awesome things like, steal the sun, fight CGI sharks, and they wrestle too.  Created by Pete Browngardt (Chowder) and produced by Cartoon Network Studios, the series will debut this summer.
  • The Amazing World of Gumball – a mixed 2D/3D animated and live-action series comes from Cartoon Network UK.  The series revolves around an odd family – Dad (a 6’4″ pink rabbit) stays home while Mom works in the rainbow factory.  Their kids include Gumball (a blue cat with a giant head); Anais (a 4-year-old genius bunny), and Darwin (a pet goldfish who sprouts legs and joins the family).  The show premieres Monday, May 9 at 7:30p.
  • The Looney Tunes Show – Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck, and the rest of the Looney Tunes characters, are featured in a new animated comedy series from Warner Bros. Animation.  Featuring a mix of new designs and a contemporary animation style, the show premieres Tuesday, May 3, at 8p.
  • New Ben 10 Series (Title TBD) – the newest installment of the Ben 10 franchise, there will also be a Ben 10 and Generator Rex crossover story.
  • ThunderCats – a re-imagined animated series based on the cult classic 1980s series
  • Green Lantern: The Animated Series – from Warner Bros., the new CG animated series is based on the DC Comics super hero.  The series is a follow-up to this summer’s live-action Green Lantern movie starring Ryan Reynolds.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars – a fourth season of the LucasFilm Animation’s CG-animated series. The one-hour season finale for the current season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars will premiere Friday, April 1, at 8p.
  • Total Drama: Revenge of the Island – the fourth installment of the Total Drama series, featuring an all-new cast.
  • RedaKai: Conquer the Kairu – an animated kids adventure series stars Ky (15) a student of martial arts who sets out with his friends on an incredible quest to find the Kairu, a primordial alien energy force.
  • Lego Ninjago – based on the Lego toy line, the series (13 episodes) is set after a time of peace in Ninjago, and follows four Ninja heroes as they face a new enemy.  Written by Kevin and Dan Hageman and produced in HD CGI by Wil Film, the series will debut at the end of 2011.  Cartoon Network already aired Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu (2×22) animated specials this year.
  • Level Up – a 90-minute TV movie (and launch pad for the series) about three high school gamers who unintentionally open a portal from an online game into the real world.  The three must work together with the help of another classmate to play the game for real and conquer evil.  Set to premiere in fall 2011, the movie is created/written by Derek Guiley and David Schneiderman (writers of Chasing Liberty), and directed by Peter Lauer (Sons of Tuscon, Chuck).  A half-hour series is expected to follow in spring 2012.  By the way we were told to expect more live-action comedy series news.
  • DC Nation – debuting in 2012, the on air and online programming block will feature Green Lantern: The Animated Series as well as Young Justice: Invasion, a 10-episode series spin-off of the animated series Young Justice.

Returning series include:

  • Adventure Time; Regular Show; MAD; Dude, What Would Happen; Destroy Build Destroy; Hole in the Wall; Generator Rex; Ben 10: Ultimate Alien; Young Justice; Batman: The Brave and the Bold; Scooby-Doo, Mystery Inc.; Bakugan; Casper’s Scare School; The Garfield Show; Hero 108; Hot Wheels: Battle Force 5; Johnny Test; and Pokemon.

Nickelodeon was the first to step into the upfront arena holding its annual event at Jazz at Lincoln Center in NYC, during which it presented plans for the 2011-12 season for its networks, including offering a sneak peek at the new CG animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series, which bows in 2012, and a preview of its new kid-centric free-to-play MMOG, Monkey Quest (www.monkeyquest.com), scheduled to launch this April 2.  The 2011-12 season will see Nickelodeon offering up 400+ new episodes of its new and returning animated, live-action and preschool series and will focus new energy on a new look and push for its Saturday morning animation programming block.  This summer a new original primetime TV movie will bring together the casts of iCarly and VictoriousTeenNick will see the addition of a new programming block that will delve into Nickelodeon’s programming library from the 1990s, news that received a great roar from those in the audience.  As always Nick’s upfront was chock full of celebrities appearances, which this year included including musical performances by Victoria Justice (Victorious), who opened the event, Jennifer Hudson and Raphael Saadiq performed individually and closed out the presentation with a duet of Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing.  Other appearances included iCarly stars Miranda Cosgrove and Jerry Trainor (also of T.U.F.F. Puppy, Best Player), the cast of Victorious, and alumnus Kenan Thompson (Saturday Night Live, All That, Kenan & Kel) who appears in the iCarly/Victorious TV movie, and actor Jason Biggs who, it was announced, will lend his voice to Leonardo, one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  Further programming details include:

  • Nickelodeon:
    • The network will rollout 450 new episodes of animated series over the next three years, 200 of those new animated episodes will debut part of its Saturday morning block in 2012.  Joining existing popular Nick animated programs, new series to the block include the much anticipated The Last Airbender: Legend of Korra (26 episodes, a spin-off of Avatar: The Last Airbender set 70-years later); Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness (52 episodes) from the network’s partnership with DreamWorks Animation; the new CG animated series Robot & Monster (26 episodes); the acquired Italian series Winx Club; and the new CG animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (26 episodes), which is set to debut in Q4 2012.
    • Nickelodeon’s Saturday morning animated block (8a-12p) debuts its new look this spring.  Based at Nickelodeon Animation Studios, the block will give viewers a behind the scenes look at how animated is made and will feature previously unseen programming content, original animated shorts, animated music mash-ups and celebrity guests.
    • Nickelodeon’s new original iCarly and Victorious TV movie mash-up, iParty with Victorious, will premiere Friday, June 10 in primetime.  The movie ends with both casts performing the theme song, Leave It All to Shine, and also features a guest appearance by Kenan Thompson.
    • Fans can also look forward to new episodes of the live-action series iCarly, Victorious, Big Time Rush, True Jackson, VP, House of Anubis, the game show BrainSurge, and The Troop, and Supah Ninjas and Bucket & Skinner’s Epic Adventures, as well as Nick News with Linda Ellerbee.
    • For preschoolers, Nickelodeon will offer up new episodes: Bubble Guppies (20 new episodes); Team Umizoomi (20 new eps); Dora the Explorer (20 new eps); The Fresh Beat Band (13 new eps); Yo Gabba Gabba! (13 new eps); Max & Ruby (26 new eps); and Olivia (13 new eps). Nickelodeon is also partnering with Chorion (Olivia, Max & Ruby) and publisher Frederick Warne & Co. (owners of Beatrix Potter), to produce a new animated preschool series The Tales of Peter Rabbit (26 eps), which is set to bow in 2012 on Nickelodeon and Nick Jr.
  • Nick at Nite:
    • Coming to the Nick at Nite line-up for the first time are the sitcoms Friends (236 episodes) and Yes, Dear (122 eps), the latter starring Nick alum Mike O’Malley (Glee, GUTS).  Friends launches on Nick at Nite this September 2011, followed by Yes, Dear in 2012.
  • TeenNick:
    • Nickelodeon is listening to its fans, specifically 9 million fans of Nicks ’90s programming on Facebook.  To that end TeenNick will launch its new late night The 90s Are All That! programming block in October 2011.  The new block will run nightly midnight-2a and feature a rotating selection of Nickelodeon’s live-action and animated series from 1990s, including All That, Clarissa Explains it All, The Adventures of Pete & Pete, Rugrats, Rocket Power, Salute Your Shorts, The Amanda Show, and Kenan & Kel, Are You Afraid of the Dark, and Legends of the Hidden Temple, among others.  TeenNick viewers will also get the chance to have their say in what shows run in the block by requesting their favorite series and episodes via social media sites the network will set up, including a Facebook fan site.
  • Special Events:
    • Nickelodeon’s annual Worldwide Day of Play event will take over Washington DC on September 24, 2011.  In addition to having its networks and websites ‘go dark’ for the afternoon to encourage kids to get outside and get active wherever they are, the network will host all range of kid/family activities.

And the word of the day is…

Picture taken from 1.bp.blogspot.com

TREACHEROUS!

I’m not sure how it happened, but a unique phrase has taken hold of the monkey lingo. It started about a month ago and the frequency of use has only increased. Treacherous is so much more than an adjective, it’s a state of mind. More specifically, it’s the college state of mind. Treacherous behavior includes going all out, acting like a fool and having little regard for normal human behavior. For example, a night of heavy drinking can be preceded by the phrase “It’s time to get treacherous tonight.” It’s also very possible to put oneself in a treacherous situation. For example, a bar special of $1 Bud Light is treacherous because of the ease in which that will translate into treacherous activity. At any point, someone that is taking part in treacherous behavior can be said to be engaging in treachery. Also, someone that is acting particularly treacherous can be nicknamed “treach” and should be referred to as “treach” until a change in activity. Have you or your friends ever acted treacherous? Please comment and describe!


Old & Young

Although Six Monkeys is a blog dedicated to the college student demographic, it is always interesting to step outside of the box and attempt to understand our surroundings. For example, what are people in the 25-54 demographic watching? What are kids in 6-11 demo watching?

Are the ages from 18-34 as coveted as advertisers make them out to be? In our current economy, more and more evidence is pointing to the fact that it is the 54+ age range with the disposable income to spend, not recent college graduates with mounds of debt. However, media buyers and product marketers seem to be too stubborn to shift their emphasis to older viewers and are losing a lot of money by catering to generation X and Y.

With this in mind, here are some of the programs that each outside age group is engaging in:

25-54

Picture taken from http://beritabaru.org/

The Good Wife (CBS)

Law & Order: SVU (NBC)

Nurse Jackie (Showtime)

The Biggest Loser (NBC)

The Amazing Race (CBS)

Top Chef (Bravo)

American Pickers (History)

American Idol (Fox)

Two and a Half Men (CBS)

Hawaii Five-O (CBS)

2-11

Spongebob Squarepants (NICK)

The Suite Life of Zack and Cody (DSNY)

Zoey 101 (Nick)

Ned’s Declassified Kids’ Survival Guide (NICK)

Hannah Montana (DSNY)

Drake and Josh (NICK)

The Fairly OddParents (NICK)

54+

All My Children (ABC)

One Life to Live (ABC)

CSI (CBS)

The Closer (TNT)

Saving Grace (TNT)

Desperate Housewives (ABC)

Picture taken from frontrowking.com

Dancing with the Stars (ABC)

Survivor (CBS)

Jay Leno Show (NBC)


Camelot, Cable Ratings and The Killing


picture taken from http://blog.dailycal.org/

So the ratings were posted for Camelot and it did very well for a pay-network premiere. It was actually a record setting episode for Starz tying Spartacus: Gods of the Arena with 1.1 million viewers. In summary, it was a great weekend for cable television- Showtime’s premiere of The Borgais achieved 1.06 million viewers and AMC‘s The Killing roped in 2.7 million viewers. Also, up and comer ReelzChannel premiered the highly controversial The Kennedy’s.

I’m still working on a method in which I would be able to compare our viewing habits with Nielsen so if anyone has any mathematical formulas or suggestions, please let me know. As of now, even though we did not enjoy Camelot, because 2/6 monkeys watched it we still are technically crushing the national average.

Last night we watched the two-hour season premiere of The Killing on my personally favorite channel AMC and it was phenomenal. The characters are brutally honest, the story is intriguing and the production quality is top notch. There was even a point in the show that was so emotional I could tell all of the monkeys were feeling the anxiety of the characters. At work today several of my female co-workers admitted that they cried. In terms of viewership, only three monkeys were in attendance. Although Sunday night may be America’s television night, for our student demographic it is major catch-up-on-homework time. It will be interesting to see if the other monkeys play around with the DVR and watch the show in time for next week’s episode.

 

 

Three Monkeys!


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