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Mar 13, 2003  •  Post A Comment

AMC Greenlights Movie Talk Series

AMC has given the production green light to 13 half-hour episodes of Sunday Morning Shoot-Out, a high-profile weekly movie talk series that will be co-hosted by Peter Guber and Peter Bart.

Mr. Guber, a well-known producer, is the head of Mandalay Entertainment Group and the former chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment, and Mr. Bart is the editor-in-chief of the Hollywood trade paper Variety. The series will debut in October.

Discovery Names Stinchcomb VP of HD Theater: Clint Stinchcomb, an 11-year Discovery Networks veteran, has been named senior VP and general manager for Discovery HD Theater, the company’s 24-hour high-definition network.

Mr. Stinchcomb, who most recently was VP of new media, affiliate sales and marketing for Discovery Networks, replaces John Ford, who resigned the HD post in February.

Lear Joining ‘South Park’: Norman Lear, the TV writer/producer behind such ’70s hits as All in the Family, The Jeffersons and Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman, will collaborate on the writing of “several” episodes of South Park in the new season, which is scheduled to begin March 19 on Comedy Central.

“My son introduced me to the show a few years ago and I’ve been a fan ever since,” Mr. Lear said in a statement.

‘American Girl’ Debut Rates Low: ABC’s All American Girl contest show premiered Wednesday night to disappointing ratings, with a fourth-place finish in adults 18 to 49 (3.0/8) and total viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research fast national data.

It managed to attract an average of only 6.8 million viewers over two hours. The show lost 1.2 million viewers from its first half-hour, 9 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., to its last half-hour, 10:30 p.m. to 11 p.m.

Fox once again had the highest-rated show of the night with the American Idol results show, which brought in 17.9 million viewers and scored an 8.5/22 in adults 18 to 49.

Fox won the night in the demo with a 6.1/16, followed by NBC (4.4/12), CBS (3.8/10) and ABC (3.3/9). In total viewers, CBS finished in a virtual tie with Fox with 12.71 million viewers to Fox’s 12.68 million. NBC was third with 12.2 million viewers, followed by ABC with 8.1 million viewers.

Dion Special to Air on CBS: CBS will air a Celine Dion special Tuesday, March 25, from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. (ET). Hosted by ‘N Sync’s Justin Timberlake, “Celine in Las Vegas … Opening Night Live!” will originate from Las Vegas on the night that Ms. Dion opens her new show “A New Day” at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace.

The special will include behind-the-scenes footage on the making of the show.

Actress Thigpen dead: Actress Lynne Thigpen, who played Ella Farmer on CBS’s The District, died suddenly last night at her home in Los Angeles. She was 54. Production of the drama has been suspended.

Ms. Thigpen had a long career on the stage, in television and in feature films. She won a Tony Award for An American Daughter on Broadway production and was nominated for her performance in Tintypes. She also won Obie Awards for her performances in Jar the Floor and Boesman & Lena.

“The entire CBS Family extends our deepest heartfelt sympathies to Lynne’s family,” said Nancy Tellem, president, CBS Entertainment. “It’s a sad day for all of us who worked with her and had the privilege of knowing her. She was an extraordinary person who will be sorely missed.”

Whittling Down ‘Married’ Couples: A panel of relationship experts will vote a couple participating in Fox’s Married by America off the show each week until only two couples are left. Viewers will then vote for the couple they think is the best match. If the couple gets married, the couple will win a free house.

The panel of relationship experts, which will first appear Monday, March 17, includes Beverly Hills, Calif., psychotherapist Dr. Jenn Berman (known as “Dr. Jenn”); Don Elium, a psychotherapist and best-selling author of four parenting and relationship books; and Miss P, a mother of four and grandmother of one, who considers herself a “relationship expert from the street.”

TWC, Sports Nets Agree: Time Warner Cable and Sunshine Network have reached an agreement to again enable Time Warner Cable customers throughout Florida to receive Sunshine Network beginning immediately.

Terms of the new contract were not disclosed, but executives at both Time Warner Cable and Sunshine Network characterized the new agreement as fair for both parties and good news for the approximately 1.7 million Florida customers served by Time Warner Cable, which had previously received the regional sports network.

A previous multiyear contract between Time Warner Cable and Sunshine Network expired at the end of 2002.

In addition, Time Warner Cable and Fox Sports Net have reached an agreement to again enable Time Warner Cable customers throughout Minnesota to receive Fox Sports Net beginning immediately.

A previous multiyear contract between Time Warner and Fox Sports Net also expired at the end of 2002.