News Briefs

Jun 2, 2003  •  Post A Comment

ABC Family has set a launch date for its summer revival of the series Dance Fever and signed former Real World cast member Eric Nies to host. Actress-singer Carmen Electra, musical artist MC Hammer and director-choreographer Jamie King have been hired as the talent competition’s judges. The variety show, created by Merv Griffin, launches with a two-hour premiere Sunday, July 13 (7 p.m. to 9 p.m. ET), when viewers will be introduced to the hopefuls who auditioned across the country. The grand prize is $100,000. Forty-eight individual or team semifinalists will compete in Las Vegas for their chance at dancing stardom. Dance Fever will begin airing in its regular one-hour weekly time slot Sunday, July 20, at 7 p.m., when the semifinalists begin performing in the higher-level elimination rounds. Dance Fever is produced by Nash Entertainment in association with Bob Bain Productions. Mr. Griffin, Bruce Nash and Bob Bain serve as executive producers.

PR Vets Turell, Levesque Change Jobs

Two veteran communication and publicity executives, Brad Turell and Christine Levesque, made moves last week. Mr. Turell-who left The WB to become executive VP at TBS when WB founder Jamie Kellner was put in charge of all the Turner cable networks-is returning to The WB as executive VP, network communications. Mr. Turell will oversee all aspects of network communications and focus on corporate communications, overall strategy and talent relations. Paul McGuire will remain as senior VP, network communications, and focus on programming, including The WB prime time, Kids’ WB and the photo department.

Ms. Levesque-who most recently served as senior VP, communication and marketing, at Cablevision’s Rainbow Media Holdings-has joined Gemstar-TV Guide International in the newly created position of executive VP, communication, marketing and government affairs. At Gemstar-TV Guide, Ms. Levesque will oversee corporate communications, media relations, brand management and government affairs for Gemstar-TV Guide and its various assets, including TV Guide Magazine, TV Guide Channel, TV Guide Interactive, VCR Plus+, Guide Plus+ and TV Guide On Screen.

Viewers Vote for NBC’s `Fame,’ UPN’s `Model’

The debut of talent show Fame scored for NBC Wednesday night, while the second episode of UPN’s America’s Next Top Model outperformed its debut episode the previous week in adults 18 to 49 and total viewers. Fame beat its closest rival by a 45 percent margin among adults 18 to 49 in its 8 p.m.-to-10 p.m. time slot May 28, scoring a 4.5 rating/13 share in adults 18 to 49, according to Nielsen Media Research fast affiliate data. The show delivered 10.6 million total viewers. NBC also won the 10 p.m. hour with a Law & Order repeat, which pulled a 4.5/13 in adults 18 to 49. For the night in adults 18 to 49, NBC won with a 4.5/13, followed by ABC and Fox (both at 3.1/9) and CBS (3.0/9). In total viewers, NBC won the night with 11.1 million, followed by CBS (10.8 million), ABC (7.7 million) and Fox (6.7 million). Model scored a 1.6 rating and 5 share in adults 18 to 49 on Tuesday at 9 p.m., compared with a 1.5/4 the previous week, and 3.2 million viewers compared with the previous week’s 2.9 million. UPN will rerun the second episode Tuesday, June 3, at 8 p.m. (ET) leading into a new episode at 9 p.m.