Drop Dead Diva begins its fifth season with the first of 13 new episodes on Sunday, June 23 at 9 PM. The fifth-season opener is aptly titled “Back From The Dead” after the dramedy series was cancelled at the end of Season 4, but Lifetime and Sony Pictures TV made a deal to bring the show back. Brooke Elliott, Margaret Cho, Jackson Hurst, Kate Levering. April Bowlby and Lex Medlin star. The season opener picks ups from last season’s cliffhanger finale with Jane (Elliott) frantically searching for her missing fiancé Owen (Medlin), who disappeared after witnessing her kiss Grayson (Hurst) moments before their wedding. While both Jane and Owen nurse their broken hearts, Jane’s friends and co-workers also are confronted with their own life dilemmas. Newcomer Justin Deely (90210) joins Drop Dead Diva as Jane’s new heavenly guide Paul. Josh Berman is creator and executive producer. Craig Zadan and Neil Meron of Storyline Entertainment and Robert J. Wilson are exec producers. Lifetime’s new drama Devious Maids will debut immediately following Drop Dead Diva at 10 PM.
EXCLUSIVE: Lifetime is closing the book on dramedy Drop Dead Diva after four seasons. I’ve learned that the cable network has opted not to order a fifth season of the show starring Brooke Elliott as a dead aspiring model trapped in the body of an intelligent, curvy lawyer. The decision comes three months after Season 4 of Drop Dead Diva wrapped its run on Lifetime. I hear the series producer Sony Pictures TV may shop it elsewhere.
Drop Dead Diva was one of two scripted series Nancy Dubuc inherited when she took over Lifetime in 2010, along with veteran drama Army Wives, which is undergoing casting and creative changes as it heads into a seventh season. There had been speculation that Lifetime brass felt Drop Dead Diva did not fit into the network’s shift toward edgier fare. The network tried to shake things up last season with the casting of Kim Kardashian in a recurring role. Ratings-wise, Drop Dead Diva has been a solid performer since its July 2009 premiere, which drew 2.8 million viewers. Its most recent season averaged consistently over 2 million viewers an episode in Live+Same Day.
Lifetime is certainly looking to make noise with some questionable casting choices. After pursuing Lindsay Lohan to portray Elizabeth Taylor in a movie, the network has cast another tabloid fixture, Kim Kardashian — this time on the series side. …