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RATINGS RAT RACE: ‘SYTYCD’ & ‘Duets’ Premiere Lack High Notes, ‘Awake’ Ends Up

Thursday night’s battle of the competition premieres left neither really strutting their stuff. The two-hour 8 PM time slot premiere of Fox’s So You Think You Can Dance(2.4/8) saw a misstep from last year. SYTYCD was down 27% from last year’s season opener. Going toe to toe with SYTYCD in the slot was ABC’s Duets (1.7/5) With American Idol winner Kelly Clarkson, John Legend and Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles as judges, Duets can lay claim to some serious singing star power. ABC’s new singing competition show was up 8% over SYTYCD in total viewers, though Fox dominated the Adult 18-49 demo by 41%. Duets brought in around 6.7 million total viewers over the two hours  to Fox’s approximately 6.2 million. However, Duets was down 29% from last year’s Expedition Impossible premiere but that still made it ABC’s biggest audience in the slot on a post-season Thursday in 4 years.

With the season over and heading into the Memorial Day weekend, it was a night of repeats on NBC that paid off for the finale of Awake (0.9/3) The now canceled police procedural’s season one closer was up 29% from last week’s season low. Over on ABC in the same 9 PM time slot, the third season of Rookie Blue (1.4/4) started off down 13% from last year’s premiere.

In a night of repeats on CBS the 8 PM The Big Bang Theory (2.3/8) repeat drew over 8.2 million viewers. That was followed by 6.2 million watching Rules of Engagement (1.7/6) 7.8 million watching Person of Interest (1.4/4) and just a little more … Read More »

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NBC Cancels Four Series, Passes On Remaining Pilots

By | Friday May 11, 2012 @ 1:07pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

After the steady stream of new series pickups and renewals over the past five days, NBC cleaned house, canceling the bubble series that had not been renewed yet and passing on the pilots that had not been picked up to series yet. The series getting axed officially include comedies Are You There, Chelsea, BFF and Bent as well as drama Awake, which showed some spunk with a ratings increase last night. It proved to be a case of too little too late.

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RATINGS RAT RACE: CBS Lineup, ‘Touch’, ‘Office’ Up; ‘Missing’, ‘Rock’, ‘Awake’ Down

By | Friday May 4, 2012 @ 9:40am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Despite primetime TV usage being down 4.4% from last Thursday, many series were up or flat last night. CBS led the charge with all of its series in positive territory. The Big Bang Theory (4.6/15) was up 15% from last week’s fast national to once again rank as the top program of the night in adults 18-49. (Like last Thursday, it will likely be adjusted up again). Rules Of Engagement (2.7/8) was up 8%. Person Of Interest (2.5/7) was up a tenth while The Mentalist (2.4/7) was up 14% from its fast national last Thursday (9% from the final). CBS won the night in total viewers and adults 18-49. Read More »

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RATINGS RAT RACE: ‘Awake’ Drops 20%

By | Friday March 9, 2012 @ 9:13am PST
Nellie Andreeva

Awake RatingsIn its second airing, NBC’s midseason drama Awake (1.6/4 in adults 18-49, 4.3 million viewers) was down 20% from its modest premiere last week. The midseason drama faced an original The Mentalist in the 10 PM hour vs. a repeat last week, but its lead-in was actually bigger. Both The Office (2.6/7) and Up All Night (1.7/4) were up a tenth in the demo from last week. Earlier in the night, 30 Rock (1.4/4) was flat, while Parks And Recreation (1.9/5) was up 12%.

CBS’ The Big Bang Theory (5.1/5, 15.2 million) appears headed for another demo victory over Fox’s American Idol (4.8/14, 17 million), though the official call will have to wait until the finals are released this afternoon as CBS was preempted for college basketball games in 3% of the country and the network’s ratings may be adjusted down. Big Bang was down a tenth from the fast national for its last original two weeks ago, while the hourlong Idol was down 11% from the two-hour edition last Thursday. The Finder (2.3/6) was up 15% from two weeks ago in its final airing on Thursday. With a stronger lead-in at 8:30 PM — a Big Bang rerun vs. Rob – CBS’ Person Of Interest (3.4/9) now runs 10% ahead of its last original for a series high. Mentalist (2.8/8) was up 8%. ABC aired repeats.

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RATINGS RAT RACE: NBC’s ‘Awake’ Off To Slow Start But Could It Have Done Better?

By | Friday March 2, 2012 @ 9:34am PST
Nellie Andreeva

NBC’s ambitious new drama series Awake opened last night with a 1.9/5 in adults 18-49 and 6.2 million viewers. While not a great number by any stretch, especially against all-repeat competition on the broadcast networks, I feel like the series starring Jason Isaacs did what it could with what it was dealt — a complex, original concept that is not easy to promote (like the fairytale characters from Once Upon A Time for example) and a spot in a faltering NBC Thursday lineup that has become tarnished as the graveyard of 2 flops already this season, Prime Suspect and The Firm. For what it’s worth, Awake‘s premiere did better than the openers of both of these series (a tenth up from Prime Suspect‘s debut, 36% up from The Firm’s) but they faced stronger competition. Awake‘s premiere was also probably impacted by the woeful state of most of NBC’s schedule (except Monday). It’s hard to promote a show when very few people are watching. For instance, the highest-rated NBC program on Wednesday, the night before Awake‘s premiere, managed a 1.6 in 18-49. Last night, Awake was the second-highest NBC series behind The Office (2.5/7, down a tenth from last week). Awake actually built onto its lead-in, Up All Night, which logged only a 1.6/4, also down a tenth. Earlier in the night, 30 Rock (1.4/4) was down a tenth, while Parks & Recreation (1.7/5) was flat despite mostly rerun competition on … Read More »

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NBC Releases ‘Awake’ Pilot Online Ahead Of Series Premiere

By | Thursday February 16, 2012 @ 3:10pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

NBC’s Awake is the latest series pilot to be put online ahead of the series premiere to drum up interest. In a part of a growing trend, the opening episode of the Kyle Killen-Howard Gordon’s parallel universe drama starring Jason Isaacs is being made available 2 weeks before the series’ premiere on March 1. If you have time or your boss is away at the moment, you can check the pilot below. You may want to keep a pen and notebook handy, taking notes may be helpful in keeping track of the dual storylines. Read More »

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NBC Sends ‘Firm’ To Saturdays, Schedules New Drama ‘Awake’ In Thursday 10 PM Slot

By | Friday February 3, 2012 @ 10:30am PST
Nellie Andreeva

After The Firm dropped to a new series low of a 0.8 rating among adults 18-49 last night — that’s got to be a historic low for NBC– the network is pulling the drama series from the Thursday 10 PM slot effective immediately. The acquired legal drama, a sequel to the John Grisham novel and 1993 movie, will continue its 22-episode run in the Saturday 9 PM slot starting next week. Its place will be taken by NBC’s midseason drama Awake, starring Jason Isaacs. The complex, reality-defying series about a detective who finds himself leading a double life will premiere March 1. In the interim, NBC will air Grimm reruns in the Thursday 10 PM hour. Awake hails from creator/executive producer Kyle Killen and executive producer/showrunner Howard Gordon. 20th Century Fox TV is producing. It will be the third freshman drama NBC is launching in the Thursday 10 PM period this season following Prime Suspect and The Firm.

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NBC Hopes Viewers ‘Awake’ To Series Possibilities: TCA

By | Friday January 6, 2012 @ 6:43pm PST

Diane Haithman is contributing to Deadline’s coverage of TCA.

Producers and stars of the new series Awake, created by Kyle Killen (Lone Star), tried to reassure journalists today at TCA that the storyline — about a detective living in two realities where clues to his cases overlap — will not be overly confusing. NBC appears convinced that audiences will get it — the network in May ordered 13 episodes of the drama, executive produced by Howard Gordon, but its premiere date is still TBA. Gordon said that a three-week unplanned production hiatus in October was not an indication the show was going off-track. “We were very lucky that we didn’t have an airdate, this was a challenging show for us to figure out,” he said. “We could have kept going, but the three-week hiatus gave us a chance to sort of get our heads together and learn from the distance we had traveled.”

A little more plot: After a car accident Jason Isaacs’ detective Michael Britten finds himself awake in two worlds. In one, his wife survives. In the other, his teenage son is the one who lives. The detective doesn’t know which world is real. BD Wong and Cherry Jones portray his therapists in these parallel worlds, each trying to persuade him the other world is not real. Isaacs insisted the story is simple enough for a child to grasp. How does he know? He said his 5-year-old daughter managed to … Read More »

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NBC’s Midseason Schedule: ‘Up All Night’, ‘Whitney’, ‘Rock Center’, ‘Harry’s Law’ Move; ‘Community’ Benched; ‘Suspect’ Pulled

Nellie Andreeva

NBC To Give ‘Harry’s Law’ Full-Season Order; ‘Prime Suspect’ Gone?

After a pretty dismal fall, NBC is shaking things up in midseason with several scheduling changes. Gone from the lineup is struggling freshman Prime Suspect (NBC says it hasn’t made a final decision on its cancellation), while four series — Whitney, Up All Night, Harry’s Law and Rock Center With Brian Williams — are on the move. NBC is creating a multi-camera comedy block in the 8-9 PM Wednesday hour with Whitney and midseason comedy Are You There, Chelsea (formerly Are You There, Vodka? It’s Me Chelsea; No alcohol-flavored title in the family hour.) The block, which will debut January 11, brings together two female comedians with similar sensibility in Whitney Cummings and Chelsea Handler, on whose books Chelsea is based. A month later, the two comedies will be followed by low-rated newsmagazine Rock Center With Brian Williams. It will take over the Wednesday 9 PM slot from Harry’s Law, which is moving to Sundays. Rock Center had to move out of the Monday 10 PM slot to make room for NBC’s highest-profile new series this season, Broadway drama Smash, which will premiere on February 6 and run in the post-The Voice slot as originally scheduled. NBC’s other changes for midseason include new comedy Up All Night moving to Whitney‘s Thursday 9:30 PM slot; 30 Rock replacing Community on Thursdays at 8 PM; and the John Grisham adaptation The Firm, originally slated for a Sunday midseason run, sliding into Prime Suspect‘s Thursday 10 PM slot. The order for Community has not been reduced, so it’s unclear what NBC will do with the remaining episodes of the college-set comedy. Missing from the midseason lineup is NBC’s ambitious new drama series Awake, which recently took an unplanned break to work on scripts. Here is NBC’s midseason schedule (with premiere dates) that also includes new reality series Fashion Star on Tuesdays at 10 PM and the return of Celebrity Apprentice on Sundays: Read More »

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NBC’s Midseason Drama ‘Awake’ Stops Production To Work On Scripts

By | Wednesday October 26, 2011 @ 12:30pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Five episodes into its 12-episode midseason order, NBC’s drama series Awake is temporarily shutting down production to allow writers to catch up on scripts. The unplanned hiatus, which is expected to last a couple of weeks, is being done upon request from Awake creator/executive producer Kyle Killen and executive producer/showrunner Howard Gordon. It will be used to plot out the rest of the series’ first season. “This is a creatively challenging show as anyone who has seen the pilot can imagine,” Gordon said. Awake stars Jason Isaacs as a detective who finds himself living in a dual reality after a fatal car accident, one where his wife survives and one where his son does. The series intertwines his two lives, each with its own family dynamic, workplace and a different psychiatrist for the lead. “Because we’re not on a tight delivery schedule, it wasn’t an expensive shutdown and just gives us an opportunity to get it right,” Gordon said, adding that the reaction from both NBC and Awake‘s studio 20th Century Fox TV to the already produced episodes (5 + the pilot) has been positive. Gordon also noted a similar shutdown for rewrites on his previous series, Fox’s 24, in the fall of 2008, which allowed the writers to reshape the second-to-last season’s creative direction. Like Awake, 24 was a midseason series, giving the producers more leeway scheduling-wise.

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COMIC-CON: TV Series Will Be Out In Force

Deadline Comic-Con TV Contributor Gary Hodges reports:

While a studio presence for movies is shaping up to be a little thin at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con (save for notable exceptions like the Cowboys and Aliens premiere and a rumored Steven Spielberg pop-in), the television side of things doesn’t seem bad at all. In fact, it already is looking pretty meaty, promising to keep small-screen aficionados (and this Deadline writer) hustling if they want to see every panel the convention has to offer. The announcements are still rolling in and the official schedule is probably still a couple weeks away, but here are a few of the juicier tidbits about what to expect at the July 21-24 event that we’ve heard so far.

20th Century Fox has announced that it will be promoting at least 13 shows this year with panels, from the familiar (Bones, Family Guy, The Simpsons and Glee, all with their respective casts) to a handful of new offerings. Probably the one garnering the most interest is Terra Nova, the sci-fi drama that boasts Spielberg as an executive producer and a ballsy commitment from Fox, which has already ordered 13 episodes (said to cost about $4 million apiece). The show should find a receptive audience at the convention, as it tells the story of how Earth in the year 2149 is apparently so bad, time-traveling to 85 million years ago to be chased and eaten by expensive CGI dinosaurs is considered an improvement. Another new Fox offering that’s interesting and destined to be fodder for the talking heads is Allen Gregory, an animated series about the titular precocious 7-year-old boy (voiced by Judd Apatow-darling Jonah Hill) and his gay dads. There’s also an animated Napoleon Dynamite series on the way, with the film’s original cast returning to do the voice work, and Awake, a sci-fi drama about a detective (Jason Isaacs) who, after a car accident, finds he can occupy two parallel realities: one where his wife died in the crash, and a second where it was his son who perished. No word yet on which reality has Fox canceling every other new series because they poured all their money into Terra Nova’s gaping prehistoric mouth.

Warner Bros will also be there in force, with a 3,000-square-foot booth on the show floor and 16 shows in their lineup. Most of the shows are old standbys; then again, most are also beloved by the average convention-goer. The Big Bang Theory cast is always welcomed with enthusiasm, making their scheduled appearance a no-brainer. Likewise Chuck, Fringe, Nikita, Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries and curiously apostrophe-free Childrens Hospital all will have no problem finding happy, receptive attendees to fill seats for a chance to glimpse their favorite star in the flesh. As for new fare, the enigmatic drama Alcatraz opens present-day with 302 people — wardens and prisoners — suddenly reappearing in the infamous prison, 50 years after their mysterious disappearance. It also stars Lost alumnus Jorge Garcia as a “hippie geek” Alcatraz expert, a challenging-sounding role that I hope he’s up for. Person of Interest is a sci-fi series about a computer program that predicts future crime victims (sounding a bit like Minority Report, but minus the precognitive crack babies who sit in a bathtub all day) and the former CIA agent (Jim Caviezel) who is tasked with trying to solve the crimes. Lastly, WB will roll out The Secret Circle, a young-adult fantasy-horror-romance series based on the book of the same name. In the series, teenaged Cassie (played by Britt Robertson) discovers she comes from a family of witches. Oh, and love; she also discovers love. Read More »

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Critics’ Choice Awards Honors 8 New Shows

Nellie Andreeva

Seven broadcast and one cable series made the cut in the Most Exciting New Series category at the inaugural Critics’ Choice Television Awards. The category, voted by broadcast journalists who have seen the pilots and any available episodes, recognizes shows premiering after June 1, 2011. Some of the most buzzed-about new series, including NBC’s Smash and Fox’s New Girl and Terra Nova, made the list, while others, including CBS’ Person of Interest and 2 Broke Girls and ABC’s Pan Am, didn’t. Here are the honorees (there will be no winner in the category, with all eight shows acknowledged at the awards show June 20):

Alcatraz – Fox – Warner Bros.
Apartment 23 - ABC – 20th Century Fox
Awake – NBC – 20th Century Fox
Falling Skies – TNT – DreamWorks
New Girl – Fox – 20th Century Fox
Ringer - CW – CBS Studios
Smash - NBC – DreamWorks/Universal Media
Terra Nova – Fox – 20th Century Fox Read More »

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Final Thoughts On The Broadcast Upfronts: Wind Of Change

Nellie Andreeva

Exactly 20 years ago, German rock band Scorpions released Wind of Change, which became an anthem for our generation of young Eastern Europeans going through a dramatic political change: the fall of communism. Coming back from the broadcast upfront presentations in New York last week, I’ve been having a hard time getting the catchy tune out of my head. While less far-reaching and profound, there is a clear sense of changing of the guard and a new direction for the broadcast networks this year. I can’t remember a time where the majority of the networks had new heads at their upfront presentations. Paul Lee took over for Steve McPherson at ABC, Bob Greenblatt for Jeff Gaspin and Angela Bromstad at NBC, and Mark Pedowitz is succeeding Dawn Ostroff at the CW. There is a similar changing of the guard among the top TV producers this year. Upstart Chernin Entertainment and DreamWorks TV, which is re-entering the broadcast arena, topped the pods with the most new series, three each, with another recently launched company, Aaron Kaplan’s Kapital Entertainment, scoring two new shows. And in its first season, Marty Adelstein and Shawn Levy’s 21 Laps/Adelstein one pilot, Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing, picked up to pilot, with another, Fox’s Family Album, in serious contention. Meanwhile, such longtime upfront fixtures as Jerry Bruckheimer TV, Mark Gordon Co. and Wonderland didn’t land any new series for next season. Read More »

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UPDATE: NBC Picks Up ‘Awake’, ‘Playboy’ & ‘Grimm’

By | Thursday May 12, 2011 @ 5:17pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

UPDATE: Word is that NBC may be done with its drama pickups, though there is no official confirmation on that and no calls have been made yet to the producers of the hourlong pilots that have not gotten a pickup yet, including Stephen Gaghan’s Metro, David E. Kelley’s Wonder Woman and Michael Patrick King’s A Mann’s World.

PREVIOUS: NBC just kicked off its second day of pickups with orders to Kyle Killen’s Inception-style Awake (form. REM) and Chad Hodge’s 1960s The Playboy Club. Both hail from 20th Century Fox TV (Playboy in a co-production with Imagine TV) and have been widely expected to get the nod. Playboy has already zeroed in on a showrunner, Shark creator Ian Biederman. NBC seems to be going studio by studio, starting off with UMS’ Whitney, Up All Night, Prime Suspect and Smash yesterday, now adding 20th TV’s Awake and Playboy. NBC also just picked up another UMS pilot, the fairytale-themed Grimm, which didn’t make the cut yesterday but remained in contention.

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