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TCA: TruTV Greenlights Four New Series, Including Reality Musical

By | Thursday July 10, 2014 @ 11:08am PDT

TCA: TruTV Greenlights Four New Series, Including Reality MusicalTruTV announced that it has greenlit four new series: Branson Famous (working title), “the first ever reality musical;” Hack My Life, which truTV describes as “a comedic take on life’s little shortcuts;” Kart Life, about kids and parents involved in competitive kart racing and The Shake Up, a competition reality series about bar owners. All series are slated to launch this fall and winter. The announcement, made at today’s TCA Summer TV Press Tour, raises the total number of series greenlit by the network over the past 9 months to 13.
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Jeff Bewkes Promises A Turnaround At truTV and TNT

By | Wednesday April 30, 2014 @ 8:58am PDT

trutv_logo110830153427“We are not satisfied with the recent ratings and advertising performance at some of the Turner networks,” the Time Warner chief told analysts this morning. There’s been a “significant drop off” at truTV. And at TNT “we didn’t take enough creative risks with its programming” and “lost ground with younger viewers….TNT-logo__120721000844__121002154527TNT has been softer than it should have been.” But Jeff Bewkes is ever the optimist: He has “great confidence in truTV” following management changes there. He also vows that TNT “can and will do better” with new programming. “These types of changes take time” but as a large network “TNT has access to all the resources it needs.” 

In other news from the call: Time Warner told the Street that cash from HBO’s new streaming deal with Amazon Prime will be used to develop more original programming and to build HBO GO. As a result, while it will contribute to HBO’s Q2 revenues in 2014 and over the next few years, it won’t result in a commensurate increase in profits.

Bewkes also says that Time Warner is talking with Dish Network about its plan to create a low-cost package of pay TV channels to be made available online to individual users. “It could allow us and them to target consumers who might not subscribe to multichannel TV” — especially young adults. But he adds that in these talks, as … Read More »

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TruTV Greenlights Six New Series, Orders More ‘The Carbonaro Effect’ And ‘Impractical Jokers’

By | Monday April 21, 2014 @ 9:52am PDT

trutv-2TruTV has greenlighted six new series as it changes its brand, targeting a young audience of “funseekers.” Over the past eight months, truTV has been reshaping its brand, turning over a slate of more than 30 projects in development. The network’s slate of new shows includes Fake-Off, a Kabuki-inspired, pop-culture-themed talent competition series; Way Out West, a reality Western about three rival outfitter families in the Idaho backcountry; How To Be A Grown Up, a comedic take on the relatable trials and tribulations of true adulthood; Local News (working title), a look at the playful rivalry between the news teams at two small-town television stations; and Hair Jacked, a new ambush game show that gives contestants the opportunity to win big money or go home with the cut of the day. Additionally, after sneak peeking new series The Carbonaro Effect on April 1, the network ordered 13 additional episodes before the first-season launch of the Michael Carbonaro starrer, debuting Thursday, May 15, at 10 PM. The network also ordered another season of Impractical Jokers, which finished the first quarter of 2014 ranking as basic cable’s No. 1 program in its Thursday night time slot with adults 18-34,  as well as a spinoff series, Jokers Wild! Here’s a rundown of truTV’s five main programming categories, with details about the new series and projects:

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TruTV Greenlights Sketch Comedy Series

By | Tuesday March 4, 2014 @ 7:19am PST
Nellie Andreeva

Reality-focused truTV is expanFOTP1ding into scripted programming with a green light to its first-ever sketch-comedy series: Friends Of The People, for a launch this summer. It stars comedians Kevin Barnett (Guy Code), Jennifer Bartels (In Living Color reboot), Jermaine Fowler (Comedy Underground With Dave Attell), Lil Rel Howery (In Living Color rtrutv_logo110830153427eboot), The Lucas Bros. (22 Jump Street) and Josh Rabinowitz (I Just Want My Pants Back). The network has ordered 10 episodes, including the pilot, for Friends Of The People scripted sketches and man-on-the-street segments. The sketches in the pilot include a previously-untold story from television history, and the adventures of “Tracy Morgan Freeman.” Read More »

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TruTV Orders Car Designer Competition Series Hosted By Brooke Burns

By | Thursday February 27, 2014 @ 4:45pm PST

trutv_logo110830153427TruTV has ordered 10 episodes of Motor City Masters, a competition series that aims to find America’s next great car designer. It’s slated to premiere in the summer. Produced by Bunim/Murray Productions and The Story Lab in collaboration with Motor City Masters_COLOR_CMYKChevrolet and hosted by Baywatch and Melrose Place alum Brooke Burns (Baywatch, Melrose Place), Motor City Masters will pit 10 designers against one another to test their limits of design expertise and creativity. The designs will be judged by Jean Jennings, president and editor in Brooke Burnschief of Automobile magazine and renowned car designer Harald Belker. They will be joined each week by a special celebrity guest judge. The field will eventually be narrowed to two competitors, one of whom will be crowned “The Next Great Car Designer.” Winner receives a new 2014 Camaro Z28 and $100,000 cash, along with the opportunity to showcase his/her designs at major auto show exhibitions. Bunim/Murray Productions’ Jonathan Murray, Gil Goldschein, Rick de Oliveira and Scott Freeman will exec produce along with The Story Lab’s Lisa Eisenpresser. Bunim/Murray’s Kirk Durham serves as co-executive producer. Burns, whose TV credits also include Drop Dead Diva and CSI: Miami, is repped by APA and Cohn/Torgan Management.

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Ex-Busboy Productions Exec Richard Korson Inks TruTV Development Deal

By | Monday January 27, 2014 @ 11:04am PST

Under the dtrutv_logo110830153427eal, Richard Korson will develop comedic programming targeted toward young adults and companion programming for truTV‘s sports telecasts, including the network’s portion of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship, truTV announced today. Korson headed up Jon Stewart’s Busboy Productions from 2005-2011, during which time he oversaw the production of The Daily Show With Jon Stewart. Korson also helped develop The Colbert Report and Important Things With Demetri Martin. Before he joined Busboy, Korson served as director of development and production at Comedy Central, where he developed and oversaw production of shows such as Insomniac With Dave Attel, TV Funhouse (with Robert Smigel), Chappelle Show, Night Of Too Many Stars: An Overbooked Benefit For Autism Education and Tough Crowd With Colin Quinn.

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Sarah Poage Upped To SVP At 44 Blue; Lesley Goldman Joins TruTV As VP Development & Original Programming

By | Wednesday January 8, 2014 @ 8:14pm PST

Sarah Poage-squareSarah Poage has been promoted to SVP at 44 Blue Productions. The exec, who was VP Production and has been with the company since 2002, works in areas including finance, legal, talent negotiations, budgeting, cost analysis, tax incentives, vendor negotiations, line producing, production management, postproduction, insurance and human resources. “Sarah has played an important role in almost every one of our recent series,” said Stephanie Drachkovitch, EVP and Co-Owner of 44 Blue. “With this new position, we look forward to her taking an even bigger role in the direction of our company.”

Lesley-Goldman-squareLesley Goldman has joined truTV as VP Development & Original Programming. She comes to the cable net from CNBC, where she was VP Primetime Alternative. In her NY-based new gig, Goldman will be oversee development of new programming, from concept to series, with creative oversight of pilots, series and specials. Before CNBC, she was senior development consultant for MTV’s East Coast series development team. “Lesley  is a creative, forward-thinking producer with a great eye for programming and strong relationships throughout the industry,” said Marissa Ronca, truTV’s SVP Development & Original Programming.

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TruTV Renews ‘Killer Karaoke’ With New Host Mark McGrath

By | Monday September 16, 2013 @ 10:14am PDT

TruTV has ordered 8 additional episodes of the extreme singing competition series Killer Karaoke, bringing its first-season total to 16. Production is scheduled to begin next month with the series return set for early 2014 with new host Mark McGrath (Don’t Forget The Lyrics!Extra). Inspired in part by British game show Sing If You Can, the series challenges contestants to sing a hit song while being put through extreme, wild and unexpected physical challenges. Killer Karaoke is produced by Zodiak USA, with Tony Yates and James Rowley serving as executive producers.

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TruTV’s ‘Container Wars’ Renewed For Second Season

By | Thursday September 12, 2013 @ 1:59pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: TruTV has picked up Container Wars for a second season with 13-episode order. The series, from Jenny Daly’s T Group, follows treasure hunters as they descend upon commercial shipping ports to bid on what they hope are containers filled with big-ticket items. “This is modern-day treasure hunting at its best,” Daly said. “The characters are passionate, the stakes are high, and scores found in any container are limitless.” Container Wars, which debuted in January, is the latest entry in the popular unscripted genre of storage unit/container auctions that also includes A&E’s Storage Wars and its offshoots, TruTV’s Storage Hunters and Spike’s Auction Hunters. Container Wars, whose first-season back order is wrapping its run, is executive produced by Daly and Michael Binko. T Group’s portfolio includes nearly a dozen pilot and series orders so far this season, including Secret Celebrity on Oxygen, Thingamabob on H2, House of Food on MTV and Divine Intervention on NatGeo.

Related: TruTV’s Chris Linn Sets His Programming Team

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TruTV’s Chris Linn Sets His Programming Team: Marissa Ronca & Michael Lanzillotta Upped; Darren Campo, Adam Dolgins Exit

By | Monday September 9, 2013 @ 1:56pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

A month after Chris Linn took the reins of TruTV as president and head of programming, the Turner cable network is undergoing an executive restructuring. Marissa Ronca has been promoted to SVP Development and Original Programming, heading up a newly combined team that covers original programming from development through production. Michael Lanzillotta has been upped to SVP and General Manager of the network. Both are based in New York and report to Linn. As part of the restructuring, SVP programming, production and development >Darren Campo, who was TruTV’s top programming executive under previous topper Marc Juris, is leaving, along with Adam Dolgins, SVP of original programming and >Mary Corigliano, SVP of brand strategy and digital content/multi-platform development. A search is underway for a senior executive to head up TruTV’s brand strategy & digital content/multi-platform development teams, replacing Corigliano. Read More »

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TruTV Orders ‘Impractical Jokers’ After-Show

By | Monday July 8, 2013 @ 1:25pm PDT

TruTV has ordered a third season of Impractical Jokers – the series in which four longtime friends take dares to crazy-stupid levels, judge each other’s performances, and subject the guy with the most fails to some mortifying punishment. It’s a show best seen — not described. Anyway, the network is finally jumping on after-show gravy train with this franchise, ordering six episodes of a series it’s cleverly calling the Jokers After Party. JAP will feature IP stars Q, Murr, Joe, and Sal as they chat about their favorite, most uncomfortable, and most humiliating moments from the series. The after-show will give viewers the rare opportunity to hear all about the “behind-the-scenes mishaps and awkward encounters that took place during shooting,” truTV said in today’s announcement. JAP also will feature never-before-seen outtakes. And, lest you forget, truTV wants you to know the second half of Impractical Jokers‘ season 2 starts on Thursday, August 1 at 10 PM.

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Chris Linn Named TruTV President And Head Of Programming

By | Tuesday May 28, 2013 @ 1:30pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

MTV’s top unscripted executive, EVP of Programming and Head of Production Chris Linn, is headed to Turner where he will take the reins of truTV as president and head of programming. He replaces Marc Juris, who announced his departure at the beginning of the month. Along with David Janollari, Linn took over MTV when president of programming Tony DiSanto left at the beginning of 2011, with Linn focused on unscripted and Janollari on scripted programming. Janollari departed when Susanne Daniels was named MTV president of programming in November, with Linn reporting to Daniels, Van Toffler and Stephen Friedman. He had been eying new opportunities for the past several months as Daniels had been exploring bringing in a new head of unscripted the way she installed Mina Lefevre on the scripted side. After an overture with a British executive, Daniels ultimately promoted within the company, with Lauren Dolgen named Head of West Coast Reality and Kimberly Rach and Andrew Portnoy named co-heads of production. Meanwhile, Linn was quietly anointed for the truTV job earlier this month but the appointment could not be made official as he was still under a contract at MTV. Today, Linn’s appointment at truTV was announced simultaneously with MTV’s announcement of the post-Linn restructuring of its unscripted area. Read More »

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TruTV Topper Marc Juris To Depart

By | Thursday May 2, 2013 @ 12:53pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: Marc Juris, who has led Turner Broadcasting’s TruTV as EVP and COO, is leaving. The exact timing of his departure is unclear; his current contract is up at the end of the year. Turner Entertainment Networks president Steve Koonin just announced Juris’ exit in a company memo (below). Juris joined TruTV in 2004, when it was known as Court TV. He was promoted to EVP and General Manager in 2007 and led the network’s transformation into TruTV. He was upped to COO in 2011. TruTV recently hit a ratings record as the network’s flagship series, Hardcore Pawn, drew 1.6 million adults 18-49 in its seventh season premiere in March, truTV’s biggest delivery ever in the key demo. Hardcore Pawn also scored truTV’s biggest season opener ever, drawing 3.2 million total viewers. But for the most recent month of April, truTV averaged 874,000 viewers, down 8% from last year. In 18-49, it posted 405,000, down 18%. The network also has faced accusations that many of its unscripted shows are staged/scripted.

Today the company is announcing the departure of our colleague Marc Juris. As executive vice president and chief operating officer of truTV, Marc has provided valuable leadership, especially through the network’s rebranding and subsequent audience growth.

I have already begun the process of evaluating truTV’s current and future leadership needs so that we can choose the right executive to lead the network.

We are extremely grateful to

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TruTV Unveils 3 New Series, 7 Pilots With Focus On Comedic Reality Series

By | Wednesday April 17, 2013 @ 10:58am PDT

TruTV said today as it meets with advertisers that it is shifting half its lineup to comedic reality series by year’s end, and has greenlighted three new original series and ordered seven pilots to go with current hits Impractical Jokers and Killer Karaoke. The network says the move targets “funseekers” — a demo evenly split between males and females with a median age of 35 “who look for comedic reality shows that are exciting to watch and prefer humor that is suspenseful, edgy and irreverent. They also look for mood-elevating shows that provide an escape and feature compelling twists and turns”. TruTV also officially renewed four series: Impractical Jokers, Guinness World Records Gone Wild, Upload With Shaquille O’Neal and the previously announced Hardcore Pawn: Chicago. Here are the network’s descriptions of the new offerings: Read More »

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TruTV’s ‘Hardcore Pawn’ Hits Ratings High In Season Premiere

By | Wednesday March 27, 2013 @ 4:01pm PDT

Back for its seventh season Tuesday, truTV’s Hardcore Pawn premiered with record rating and viewership numbers. The pawn shop-based reality series pulled in 1.6 million viewers in the adults 18-49 demographic last night, rocketing up 36% over the show’s Season 6 debut last July and the best  truTV has ever done in the key demo. Hardcore Pawn also garnered truTV’s best ever season opener audience with 3.2 million viewers watching the return of pawnbroker Les Gold and his offspring. Last night’s viewership was up 25% over the Season 6 debut on July 10, 2012. Breaking records for truTV is nothing new for  Hardcore Pawn — when the series debuted in 2010, its 2.8 million viewers was at the time the best series or season premiere the network ever had.

Related: ‘Hardcore Pawn: Chicago’ Posts TruTV’s Highest-Rated Series Premiere

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TruTV Orders More ‘Impractical Jokers’ & ‘Hardcore Pawn: Chicago’

By | Wednesday February 20, 2013 @ 12:35pm PST

There’s going to be even more reality on reality network truTV. The network said today it has ordered more episodes of Hardcore Pawn: Chicago and Impractical Jokers. That makes eight more episodes of the hit freshman spinoff Hardcore Pawn: Chicago and 13 more second-season episodes of Impractical Jokers. Based on the long-running Hardcore Pawn, Hardcore Pawn: Chicago debuted to the highest-rated series premiere in truTV’s history on New Year’s Day. Averaging 2.1 million viewers, the show hits its midseason finale February 26. It is produced by Bischoff-Hervey Entertainment with Eric Bischoff, Jason Hervey and Richard Calderon serving as executive producers. The public gags- and antics-based Jokers is averaging about 1.8 million viewers this season. It is produced by NorthSouth Prods with Charlie DeBevoise and Mark Hickman executive producers.

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‘Hardcore Pawn’ Renewed For Season 7

By | Friday January 25, 2013 @ 8:33am PST
Nellie Andreeva

TruTV has ordered a seventh season of its flagship series Hardcore Pawn, which just shot its 100th episode. The docu reality series is set at family-owned American Jewelry & Loan. In its sixth season, Hardcore Pawn, produced by Zodiak New York, has averaged 2.6 million viewers (+11% vs. Season 5), with 1.2 million adults 18-49 and 665,000 men 18-49.

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‘Hardcore Pawn: Chicago’ Posts TruTV’s Highest-Rated Series Premiere

By | Wednesday January 2, 2013 @ 1:43pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

Boosted by a Hardcore Pawn original, spinoff Hardcore Pawn: Chicago got off to a strong start, drawing more than 2.1 million viewers for its series premiere last night to rank as truTV‘s biggest series launch ever. It also scored truTV’s biggest series debut ever in adults 18-49 (1.0 million) and men 18-49 (602,000). The network’s previous most-watched series premiere was the August 2010 opener of the mothership Hardcore Pawn, which posted a solid 2.8 million total viewers, 1.4 million adults 18-49; and 827,000 men 18-49 at 9 PM last night, leading to the Hardcore Pawn: Chicago premiere. Hardcore Pawn: Chicago takes viewers behind the scenes at Royal Pawn Shop in Chicago.

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Hot Objectionable TV Clip: ‘Killer Karaoke’

By | Wednesday November 21, 2012 @ 2:34pm PST
Mike Fleming

Here is a clip from the new TruTV singing competition Killer Karaoke. The series begins airing in November, and my question is: was this Steve-O hosted show specifically mentioned among the ancient apocalyptic Mayan prophecies that the world will end later this year?

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