Chi McBride has been upped to series regular on CBS‘ Hawaii Five-O. CBS announced last summer McBride, who starred in the network’s short-lived Golden Boy, would guest star on the fourth season debut of Five-0, playing SWAT Captain Lou Grover – a character from the original series. At the time, it was suggested more episodes with McBride were likely. With its switch from Monday at 10 PM to Fridays at 9 this season, and without those younger-skewing Monday comedies as its leadin, Five-0 is up 17% in overall audience — from 10.2 million to nearly 12 million viewers — but is down 19% in the demo; its median age has increased from last season’s 55.8 years at this point last season, to 59.5 this season to date.
“Well, I know this sounds corny, but the only thing I ever wanted in my career was to be on CBS, the home of my idol Jackie Gleason,” McBride enthused in today’s announcement.
They would be on more stable legal footing if they just jumped in the surf off the coasts of America’s 50th state. After being in, then out, and then in again, CBS today is really back in the multimillion-dollar lawsuit over the Hawaii Five-O reboot. In a downtown hearing today, LA Superior Court Judge Gregory Alarcon denied the network’s latest bid to be let out of the case brought by talent agent George Litto. In his ruling on the summary judgment motion, Alarcon made no finding on the merits of the actual case, which is now set for a January 21, 2014 trial date. However, the judge did agree with Litto’s contention that CBS had clear knowledge of the partials rights that the talent agent held to the series in conjunction with creator Leonard Freeman’s estate. The agent to Freeman, Litto is seeking $10 million in punitive damages and a share of the profits from the rebooted show, which CBS brought back in 2010. “Once again, this is a procedural hearing, and we remain confident that we’ll prevail on the actual merits of the case at trial,” a CBS spokesperson told me after today’s hearing.
It’s been quite a road to get where CBS is now. In January of this year, Alarcon agreed with CBS’ then demurrer and removed the network from the suit Litto first filed in May 2012. But in July, Alarcon changed his mind and put CBS back in the lawsuit with Freeman’s heirs after the plaintiff assured the court that legal battle over Five-O was about money and not CBS’ ability to continue to produce the show. In September, Judge Elizabeth Allen White denied CBS’ effort to again get out of the case. Read More »
Hawaii Five-O‘s Daniel Dae Kim is branching out to producing. He has launched the production banner 3AD, which will be based at CBS TV Studios, the studio behind Hawaii Five-O, with a two-year first-look. Under the pact, Kim will develop and produce projects for network and cable. He is in the process of hiring a development executive. Kim, repped by APA, Anonymous Content and Klevan/Longarzo, is filming the fourth season of CBS’ Hawaii Five-) as Chin Ho Kelly. He rose to fame with his role as Jin Soo Kwon on ABC hit Lost, for which he shared a SAG Award for best drama ensemble.
It wasn’t enough for the makers of Hawaii Five-O to let viewers pick the ending of an episode last season, now they’re giving fans control over a full hour. CBS today unveiled its Fan Built Five-O initiative, a Mad Libs-esque stunt that lets the public vote online for an episode’s half-dozen key story points: scene of the crime, victim, murder weapon, evidence, suspect and takedown. After the polls close on Halloween, the show’s writers will use the winning elements to forge a script. Before production on the episode begins in February, fans will be able to weigh in on such things as wardrobe, props, music and the title. The series hula-ed over to Fridays this season, and after two episodes McGarrett, Danno and company’s ratings are down 21 percent in the demo compared with last year. But it’s up by nearly that percentage in total viewers (9.6 million) on the older-skewing night, which CBS is dominating. Hence the web-voted story ploy targeting the less chronologically challenged. And TV writers thought reality formats were a threat to their livelihoods. Check out the categories and options up for balloting after the jump:
Related: CBS Denied Exit From ‘Hawaii Five-O’ Lawsuit
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The network isn’t out of the legal surf after all. Today, CBS’ motion to be dismissed as a defendant in the multimillion-dollar lawsuit over the Hawaii Five-O reboot has been denied. Judge Elizabeth Allen White turned down the network’s effort to again be let out of talent agent George Litto’s suit in a hearing Thursday in LA Superior Court. CBS was hoping to see a repeat of its temporary exit from the suit earlier this year. Not that CBS seemed to be sweating today’s decision. “Today was a procedural ruling only, not about the evidence of the case. We’re confident going forward that the facts presented will support a dismissal. Mahalo,” a spokesperson told me after the hearing.
In January, Judge Gregory Alarcon agreed with the network’s then demurrer and removed it from the suit that Five-O creator Leonard Freeman’s talent agent first filed in May 2012. But in July, Alarcon changed his mind and put CBS back in the lawsuit with Freeman’s heirs after the plaintiff assured the court that suit over the show was about money and not CBS’ ability to continue to produce the series. Litto claimed in his initial $10 million suit that the Freeman’s heirs and CBS keep him out of negotiations for the reboot. Read More »
UPDATE, 1:02 PM: CBS isn’t inclined to make too big a deal about being renamed as a defendant in the multi-million dollar lawsuit over the Hawaii Five-O reboot but the network isn’t taking it lying down either. “This is not a ruling on the merits of the case. It is simply a procedural decision that allows Mr. Litto to allege financial claims against CBS, which we will vigorously contest. It is important to remember that Mr. Litto’s own filing with the court confirms CBS’s rights to produce and broadcast the new Hawaii Five-0,” said the network today. The statement comes in response to LA Superior Court judge Gregory Alarcon putting CBS back in the $10 million suit filed by talent agent George Litto after letting them out of it earlier this year.
PREVIOUSLY, 9:14 AM: They thought they were out, but the judge has made CBS a defendant again in a lawsuit over the Hawaii Five-O reboot. In January, Judge Gregory Alarcon agreed with the network’s demurrer and removed them from the suit that Five-O creator Leonard Freeman’s talent agent George Litto filed in May 2012. The LA Superior Court judge’s change of heart last week was based on evidence over the battle to bring the show, which ran from 1968 to 1980, back in … Read More »
CBS won’t be getting caught up in the rough currents of a Hawaii Five-O lawsuit after all. Monday the network was released from a lawsuit filed in May by the agent of Hawaii Five-O creator Leonard Freeman. “Defendant CBS Studios Inc.’s, erroneously sued as CBS Television Network, (“CBS”) Demurrer is sustained without leave to amend,” wrote LA Superior Court Judge Gregory Alarcon in his tentative ruling (read it here) made final Monday. While the network could be pulled back into the case on appeal, they are out of the case for now. “We appreciate the court’s ruling and are pleased that it brings an appropriate conclusion to our involvement in this lawsuit,” said a CBS spokesman today. Though many of his claims were substantiated, it was time that worked against Freeman’s former agent George Litto - specifically how long it took Litto to file his $10 million suit against the Freeman heirs and adding CBS to the complaint last fall. Litto contended in his suit that the heirs and CBS shut him out of 2010 negotiations for the reboot of the original series that ran from 1968 to 1980. After the 1974 death of Freeman, Litto and the producer’s widow Rose came to an agreement that gave him substantial rights in connection with future versions of the series.
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Christine Lahti has joined Hawaii Five-O. The Emmy winner will play Doris McGarrett, the mother of Alex O’Loughlin’s Steve McGarrett, during the next season of the CBS drama. “The mysterious character of Doris McGarrett is a pivotal one to the mythology of our show. We are thrilled to have a seasoned and beloved actress such as Christine to portray her,” Hawaii Five-O executive producer Peter Lenkov said today. CBS renewed Hawaii Five-O for a third season earlier this spring. Lahti is repped by ICM Partners and Management 360.
RELATED: Michelle Borth Joins ‘Hawaii Five-O’ As New Regular
George Litto, whose agency represented the original writer and creator of the 1960s and ’70s CBS TV series Hawaii Five-O, has filed suit against the trusts for heirs of writer-producer Leonard Freeman and their representatives alleging that he was shut out of negotiations over the new version of the series and deprived of the relevant income and rights. Litto points out that CBS at one point filed a federal claim trying to wrest control from Litto and the Freeman trusts but ultimately lost. Litto’s suit contends that CBS and the trusts then shut him out of negotiations for the new series by attempting to renegotiate a 1974 agreement between Litto and the trusts that gave him substantial rights in connection with future versions of the series. Litto further contends that all rights to negotiate terms for and to share in revenues from future iterations of Hawaii Five-O reverted to him upon the death of Freeman’s widow Rose in March 2012.
Litto accuses the Leonard and Freeman trusts of breach of written contract, breach of fiduciary duty and unjust enrichment. Litto seeks a minimum of $10 million in actual damages plus punitive and exemplary damages to be determined by the court. Litto also asks for a full accounting to determine the amount of money he is owed and asks the court to transfer to Litto and his company of any and all revenue and rights associated with the new Hawaii Five-O … Read More »
In the latest round of upper-level behind-the-camera series hires, Mad Men director Lesli Linka Glatter has joined new Fox drama series Ride-Along as a co-executive producer/director, 24 producer-director Brad Turner has joined CBS’ new drama Hawaii Five-O, also as a co-executive producer-director, while Without a Trace alum David Amann has come on board ABC’s dramedy Castle as an executive producer.
WME-repped Glatter has directed six episodes of AMC’s Mad Men and recently won a DGA Award for helming the Guy Walks Into an Advertising Agency episode. She previously worked with Ride-Along creator/executive producer Shawn Ryan on Fox’s Lie To Me, on which he was showrunner this past season, and CBS’ The Unit, which Ryan also executive produced and ran.
Turner joins Hawaii Five-O from Fox’s 24 where he was the producing director for the past four seasons, rising to executive producer, and was part of the show’s producing team that won best drama series Emmy in 2006. Among the episodes he directed this season are the two-hour premiere, and the two-hour 24 series finale. He is repped by APA.
New Castle executive producer Amann, who joins creator/showrunner/executive producer Andrew Marlowe, previously spent four seasons on CBS’ Without A Trace, the last two as co-showrunner/ executive producer. He is repped by Gersh.
UPDATED: CBS‘ fall schedule features five new series. After considering expanding its Thursday comedy block to two hours last years, the network did it this year, with The Big Bang Theory and Two A Half Men flanking newbies The Millers starring Will Arnett and The Crazy Ones starring Robin Williams. Missing from the fall schedule is Mike & Molly, which has a 22-episode order, and new series Friends With Better Lives (comedy) and Reckless (drama) on tap for midseason. Here is CBS’ fall schedule, followed by analysis and show descriptions:
CBS FALL 2013-2014 SCHEDULE
(New programs in UPPER CASE; NT=New Time)
8-8:30 PM – How I Met Your Mother
8:30-9 PM – WE ARE MEN
9-9:30 PM – 2 Broke Girls
9:30-10 PM – MOM
10-11 PM – HOSTAGES / INTELLIGENCE (Midseason)
8-9 PM – NCIS
9-10 PM – NCIS: Los Angeles
10-11 PM – Person Of Interest (NT)
8-9 PM – Survivor
9-10 PM – Criminal Minds
10-11 – CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
8-8:30 PM – The Big Bang Theory
8:30-9 PM – THE MILLERS
9-9:30 PM – THE CRAZY ONES
9:30-10 PM – Two And A Half Men (NT)
10-11 PM – Elementary
8-9 PM – Undercover Boss
9-10 PM – Hawaii Five-0 (NT)
10-11 PM – Blue Bloods
8-8:30 PM – COMEDYTIME SATURDAY
8:30-9 PM – COMEDYTIME SATURDAY
9-10 PM – Crimetime Saturday
10-11 PM – 48 Hours
7-8 PM – 60 Minutes
8-9 PM – The Amazing Race
9-10 PM – The Good Wife
10-11 PM – The Mentalist
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