Evan Ross and Donny Boaz have been cast opposite Keke Palmer, Lil Mama and Drew Sidora in Crazy, Sexy, Cool: The TLC Story, VH1‘s biopic of R&B/hip-hop/pop group TLC. Ross will play Dallas Austin, the producer of many TLC hits who was romantically involved with Chilli (Palmer). Boaz will play the trio’s manager Bill Diggins. Lil Mama plays Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes; Sidora plays Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins. Ross, repped by Paradigm, KLWGN and Ziffren Brittenham, and Austin are actually close friends in real life – Austin was a producer on Ross’ very first film, Warner Bros’ ATL. Boaz will next be seen portraying Larry Birkhead in Lifetime’s Anna Nicole Smith biopic.
VH1 has ordered three news shows for spring 2013: The Gossip Game, which follows ambitious women covering the urban entertainment beat; I’m Married To A…, a documentary series that examines some unusual couples in love; and 100 Sexiest Artists, a five-part countdown special. VH1 has also has picked up a third season of T.I. And Tiny: The Family Hustle, featuring rapper T.I. “Tip” Harris, his wife, entrepreneur and singer Tameka “Tiny” Harris, and their brood of six children. Here are description of VH1′s new series with premiere dates:
Keke Palmer (Akeela & The Bee), Lil Mama (America’s Best Dance Crew) and Drew Sidora (Step Up) are set to star in Crazy, Sexy, Cool: The TLC Story, VH1‘s biopic of R&B/hip-hop/pop group TLC. Palmer will portray Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas, Lil Mama will take on the role of Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, and Sidora will play Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins in the full-length TV movie about the trio’s lives and careers. Charles Stone III (Drumline) is directing from a script by Kate Lanier (What’s Love Got To Do With It). The film is slated to begin shooting next month in Atlanta where Chilli, Left Eye and T-Boz started their rise to fame. The two surviving members of the group, Chilli and T-Boz, serve as consultants and executive producers.
Diane Haithman contributes to Deadline’s TCA coverage.
Talking about his new BBC America series The Nerdist earlier this afternoon, comic Chris Hardwick set the stage for Jenny McCarthy‘s appearance promoting her new late night talk show for VH1. Joking about their years as co-hosts of MTV’s Singled Out, Hardwick told a story about her failing to come out of her dressing room on time for their first installment because she was fighting a clogged toilet without a plunger. So when McCarthy came out later, she did Hardwick one better with a tale of her own about how she once set a hotel room on fire before a show as a result of the unfortunate combination of a boyfriend, a candle and some hot rollers. “That tops a clogged toilet,” McCarthy said gleefully (although she confided that she clogged her toilet on a weekly basis).
But McCarthy was here to talk about what she’s doing in late night with The Jenny McCarthy Project. She said that the 10:30 Friday night show is the result of a five-year development deal with Oprah Winfrey to do a daytime talk show that didn’t work out. “I realized I was definitely into late night more than daytime at this point in my life,” McCarthy said. “I probably always was. I was really excited when VH-1 told me I could be myself, outrageous but fun.”
EXCLUSIVE: Matchmaking is a hot reality genre with such series as Bravo’s veteran Millionaire Matchmaker and NBC’s upcoming Ready For Love executive produced by Eva Longoria. VH1 is joining the trend with Making Mr. Right, which puts a twist on the matchmaking format. On the eight-episode show, which will premiere January 6, three single women pose as “expert matchmakers” to pull a ruse on 14 unsuspecting guys who think they’ve signed up for a show called Match Me If You Can. With the help of 15-year veteran matchmaker April Beyer, the three women — Brittany Skipper, owner of a private event planning service; Lindsay Osborne, an experienced caterer; and Rachel Seeker, a construction contractor — pretend to work on finding these guys true love, but in reality are there to mold them into their own versions of “Mr. Right.”
EXCLUSIVE: VH1 has picked up Model Employee, a new reality competition series featuring eight models vying for the chance of becoming the face of the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino. American model Chrissy Teigen will host of the series from Undercover Boss producer Studio Lambert, which has received an eight-episode order for a premiere in early 2013.
The contestants — Alexis Farmer, Aspen Widowson, Britany Trankino, Jassmine Amos, Johanna Daru, Shannone Holt, Sonja Ewy and Shah Granville — will be put through a series of challenges designed to test not only their modeling abilities, but also their working knowledge of the hotel. That will involve them performing some of the dirtiest and most physically exhausting jobs that make the hotel function, including cleaning Mandalay Bay’s signature shark tank or sifting through all of the resort’s trash for recyclable items. The contestants will also put their modeling skills to work in front of a panel of judges that includes Vanessa Branch, former Orbit Gum spokes model, Patrick Miller, VP of Marketing at Mandalay Bay, and Jimmy Smith, CEO and Chief Creative Officer of Amusement Park Entertainment. The winner will get to represent Mandalay Bay with a $100,000 year- long spokes -model contract.
EXCLUSIVE: Recently renewed VH1 comedic drama series Single Ladies will be heading into its third season without creator/executive producer Stacy A. Littlejohn. “After two incredible seasons of Single Ladies, I have decided to entrust the show to the safe hands of VH1,” Littlejohn told Deadline. “Having fostered it from its inception, I’ve found great satisfaction in seeing these characters come to life on the screen, and am proud of what the show has become. But after two all-consuming seasons immersed in its production in the great city of Atlanta, I’ve decided it’s time to shift my focus to my life in Los Angeles and the creation of new projects.”
Single Ladies, executive produced by Queen Latifah, started off as an original movie to become VH1′s first hourlong scripted series. Its success opened the door to the series pickup of Bounce in July. “It’s been an honor to have been the creator and showrunner of VH1’s first-ever, hour-long scripted series,” Littlejohn said. “I have great respect for the talent on this show, all of whom have upheld my vision since its outset. I wish Single Ladies all the best and will continue to tune in Monday nights to see what my girls have been up to.”
New York, NY – August 22, 2012– VH1 is giving hit scripted drama/comedy series “Single Ladies” a third season. The series, which has its second season finale on Monday, August 27 at 9PM,* has been averaging 3.2 million total viewers during premieres plus first encores, up 10% from season 1. Through its first 12 premiere episodes, Single Ladies is averaging a 1.4P18-49 Live+SD rating, up 17% from season 1. It continues to be basic cable’s #1 ad-supported regularly scheduled scripted show among women 18-49 over the course of the summer. Season 3 is set to premier later in 2013.
EXCLUSIVE: VH1 has ordered its second hourlong scripted series. The network’s pilot Bounce, starring Dean Cain, Kimberly Elise, Charlotte Ross, newcomer Taylour Paige and Logan Browning has, has been picked up to series. It joins VH1′s first hourlong scripted series, the Queen Latifah-produced Single Ladies.
Created and written by James LaRosa, Bounce follows the lives and loves of the Los Angeles Devil Girls, the dance team for the country’s No. 1 professional basketball team. It centers on Ahsha (Paige), a sheltered woman who joins the team against the wishes of her mother Sloane (Elise), who knows this treacherous, tempting world all too well having been an original Devil Girl herself. Olivia (Ross) is the shrewd squad manager, Jelena (Browning) is the ruthless star captain of the team, and Pete Davenport (Dean Cain) is the former all-star who’s come back to coach his old team only to have to contend with the girls stealing the spotlight and distracting his players. Maggie Malina and LaRosa executive produce the series, which will begin production in 2013. The cast includes Valery Ortiz, Katherine Bailess, Jonathan McDaniel and McKinley Freeman. Sanaa Hamri directed the pilot, which marks VH1′s first hourlong pilot.
EXCLUSIVE: VH1 is stepping into the reality music competition arena with 60-Minute Superstar, a new series in development. It is executive produced by former MTV Networks entertainment president Brian Graden, who once led VH1′s ratings turnaround …