Hollywood Notes

Feb 4, 2002  •  Post A Comment

Shapiro, Grodner production partners
Veteran reality series producer Arnold Shapiro (“Big Brother 2,” “Scared Straight” “Rescue 911”) and longtime partner Allison Grodner (“The Teen Files,” “Flipped”) have formed a new production banner, Arnold Shapiro & Allison Grodner Productions, to develop new alternative series projects for the networks. Mr. Shapiro and Ms. Grodner, along with development executive Amy Bailey, are said to be developing several reality series and specials for the broadcast and cable networks. Currently, Mr. Shapiro and Ms. Grodner are executive producing the series “Flipped” for MTV; “Parole Board” for A&E; a 90-minute special, “Small Town Ecstasy,” for HBO (premiering April 28); two specials for CBS titled “DNA: The Final Truth”; and several specials for MSNBC.
`Brady’ locks down ABC time slots
As expected, the ABC station group has announced that it will place upcoming strip “The Wayne Brady Show” in the 10 a.m. time period leading out of “Live With Regis and Kelly.” With few slots open on any of the ABC owned-and-operated stations, distributor Buena Vista Television ensured that its new show would avoid a late-night burial with the 10 a.m. arrangement. The time slot had previously been a launching pad for “The Rosie O’Donnell Show” and “Oprah.”
CBS sets reality series debuts
CBS has scheduled its next flight of reality series-“AFP: American Fighter Pilot,” “The Amazing Race 2” and “Survivor: Marquesas”-for late-February to early-March rollouts. CBS is going beyond “Survivor 4’s” normal 8 p.m.-to-9 p.m. (ET) Thursday run (starting Feb. 28), which will extend through the May sweeps, with a two-hour finale airing instead from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday, May 19, to be immediately followed by an hour-long reunion special. Meanwhile, “AFP: American Fighter Pilot,” a new “Top Gun”-like reality series from filmmakers Ridley Scott and Tony Scott, will debut March 29 in the 8 p.m.-to-9 p.m. Friday time slot.
“Amazing Race 2” will have a special preview on Monday, March 11, at 10 p.m., before moving to its regular 9 p.m.-to-10 p.m. Wednesday time slot on March 13. On March 13 and 20, “Amazing Race 2” will follow special Wednesday airings of “Survivor: Marquesas” to accommodate CBS’s Thursday coverage of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament on March 14 and 21.
CBS renews nine shows
CBS renewed its entire slate of Monday night comedies (“The King of Queens,” “Yes, Dear,” “Everybody Loves Raymond” and “Becker”) and Tuesday dramas (“JAG,” “The Guardian” and “Judging Amy”). As expected, full-season renewals were a formality for CBS’s hit 9 p.m.-to-10 p.m. (ET) Thursday drama “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” which is going to get a spinoff series next season, and 10 p.m. Saturday drama “The District.”
`Justice,’ `Edward’ remain tops
The second week of the freshman race for the syndication crown proved just as tight as the previous week. For the week ending Jan. 20, according to Nielsen Media Research, three shows remained in the running for top freshman first-run strip with another tie between Twentieth Television’s “Texas Justice” and Studios USA Domestic Television’s “Crossing Over With John Edward.” In fact, both series can claim a victory depending on the numbers. Each grew 5 percent for the week to a 2.1 household AA rating. In the demos, “Crossing Over” took the edge among both women 18 to 49 and women 25 to 54 with a 1.4 vs. “Justice’s” 1.2. However, the ad-driven GAA rating showed “Justice” at the top with a 2.9, thanks to more runs on the Fox and former Chris-Craft stations compared with “Edward’s” 2.8, which includes runs on the Sci-Fi Channel. Third place went to NBC’s “Weakest Link,” which was even with a 1.8 AA rating for the week and a 2.2 GAA score.