The Texan boys were truly back in town last night on the NFL on NBC. The network’s debut Sunday Night Football (9.1/23) of the regular season saw the Dallas Cowboys best the New York Giants 36-31. With Dallas forcing turnovers to clinch the victory over Eli Manning and NY at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas and 23.25 million watching between 8:30 PM – 11 PM, the match-up dipped 7% from the fast nationals last season’s first Sunday regular game between the Denver Broncos and the Pittsburgh Steelers on September 9, 2012. It was also down from the final nationals rating of 11.0/28 that last year’s game garnered. That 2012 result is the all-time record for Sunday Night Football. Last September’s first Sunday regular season game pulled in 27.567 million viewers overall, the third best result SNF has ever had. The top SNF viewership is 30.281 million that the December 30, 2012 Dallas Cowboys-Washington Redskins received with the January 1, 2012 Cowboys-Giant battled coming second with 27.624 million watching. Last year, the Cowboys and the Giants were the September 5 opening game of the regular season facing off against Bill Clinton and the Democratic National Convention. In metered-market results, Sunday’s game got a 16.6/27 for the 8:30 PM – 11:45 PM game. That’s down from the record breaking 18.0/29 that last year’s Sunday opener pulled in in the time adjusted results. Running prior …
ABC didn’t only pick up scripted series today. The network also renewed two unscripted series. It gave a third-season renewal to Mark Burnett’s reality series Shark Tank, which has done solid business in its second cycle, and a second-season order to promising midseason series Secret Millionaire, from Zodiak USA, which also did well subbing for Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The second-season finale of the Sony TV-produced Shark Tank airs tonight.
ABC today announced its scheduling plans for new reality series Secret Millionaire, confirming Deadline’s story from October. Secret Millionaire will premiere on Sunday, March 6, taking over the Sunday 8 PM slot regularly occupied by Extreme Makeover: Home Edition for a six-weeks. EMHE will return in the time period with original episodes on April 17. Secret Millionaire‘s premiere is timed to the Academy Awards, ABC’s highest-rated annual telecast, which airs the previous Sunday and is expected to heavily promote Secret Millionaire. CBS’ similarly-themed Undercover Boss benefited from launching behind that network’s top-rated telecast last season, the Super Bowl.
Based on the hit British series, the Zodiak USA-produced Secret Millionaire follows successful U.S. business people who spend a week in the country’s poorest areas and at the end of their stay reveal their true identity and give deserving people in the community hundreds of thousands of dollars of their own money. The series was first adapted in the U.S. by Fox, but ABC ‘s version is said to be more faithful to the original and have stronger emphasis on the emotional experience. Casting is already under away for a potential second cycle. Secret Millionaire is executive-produced by Grant Mansfield, Natalka Znak, Claire O’Donohoe and Leslie Garvin, with Paul Osborne is co-executive producing.
EXCLUSIVE: Secret Millionaire‘s prospects at ABC are getting better by the minute. First, the network pulled the new reality series from the low-profile Friday 8 PM slot where it was originally scheduled. Now I hear it is giving it Extreme Makeover: Home Edition‘s Sunday 8 PM time period for a six-episode midseason run starting March 6. That is the Sunday after the Academy Awards, with ABC planning to heavily promote Secret Millionaire during the awards broadcast. For ABC, which has no football, the Oscars are the most-watched telecast of the year and the biggest possible promotional platform for its shows.
New ABC programming chief Paul Lee is looking to upgrade another series his predecessor put on the low-trafficked Friday night. Beginning November 5, ABC will air reality veteran Supernanny in the Friday 8 PM slot. That is where Secret Millionaire, which ABC acquired after a run on Fox, was originally slotted though it was never assigned a premiere date. This follows a similar move ABC made last week with the Dana Delany-starring new procedural Body of Proof, originally slated to air Fridays at 9 PM, which was also held back and will be replaced by Primetime: What Would You Do?, beginning next week. Lee is said to be high on both Secret Millionaire and Body of Proof and is planning to give them a proper launch elsewhere. He just added another building block for midseason, a winter edition of Wipeout. In May, ABC announced a renewal for Supernanny but the series did not get a spot on the schedule and was held as backup. ABC also announced today that it will be preempting struggling new drama The Whole Truth tonight for a 20/20 special on the Chilean miners’ rescue.
ABC just announced the premiere dates for all of its fall series with the exception of freshmen Body of Proof and Secret Millionaire, whose dates will be released later. No surprises, with the bulk of the series unspooling during the traditional premiere week. Additionally, the name of new comedy Better Together has been changed to Better With You.
Monday, September 20
8:00-10:00 p.m. “Dancing with the Stars”
10:00-11:00 p.m. “Castle”