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Thursday, August 17, 2017
ON THIS DAY                                                                           
The historical TV game show scandal investigation began in 1958 after the public learned that many of the shows were rigged. The most publicized and notorious scandals surrounded three quiz shows: “Twenty-One, “The $64,000 Question” (the first big-money television quiz show), and “Dotto.All of these shows were eventually driven off the air… The first episode of VH-1’s “Behind the Music” aired in 1997…Also in 1997: Showtime aired a made-for television movie remake of “12 Angry Men.” The cast featured Courtney B. VanceOssie DavisGeorge C. ScottArmin Mueller-StahlDorian HarewoodJames GandolfiniTony DanzaJack LemmonHume CronynMykelti WilliamsonEdward James Olmos and William Petersen…Celebrity Birthdays: Two-time Academy Award winner Robert De Niro is 74; “Land of the Lost” star Wesley Eure is 66; Sean Penn, another double Oscar winner, is 57; Donnie Walhberg is 48.

-Did You Know?:
“Quiz Show,” a 1994 film produced by Robert Redford, chronicled the game show scandals of the 1950s, the rise and fall of popular contestant Charles Van Doren after the fixed loss of Herb Stempel, and Congressional investigator Richard Goodwin’s subsequent probe. It starred John Turturro,Rob MorrowRalph FiennesDavid Paymer and Paul Scofield.

RATINGS BOX                                                                            
Wednesday 8/16/17

Household Rating/Share
NBC: 4.1/ 7, ABC: 3.4/ 6, CBS: 2.7/ 5, Fox: 1.8/ 3, CW: 0.5/ 1

Note: Comparisons to the year-ago evening are excluded because NBC aired The 2016 Summer Olympics.

-Ratings Breakdown:
“America’s Got Talent” on NBC towered over a still respectably rated edition of “Big Brother” on CBS, with a 7.1 rating/13 share in the household overnights from 8-9 p.m. “Big Brother,” which features a double eviction this evening, scored a 4.1/ 7.

“America’s Got Talent” led into the debut of sitcom “Marlon,” starring Marlon Wayans, at a second-place 3.6/ 6 in the 9 p.m. half-hour, which was clearly sampled. But “Marlon” also dipped by 51 percent from the 8:30 p.m. portion of “AGT” (7.3/13). A second episode of “Marlon” dipped to a 2.9/ 5 (#2) at 9:30 p.m.

In the specials department was “CMA Fest 2017” on ABC, which scored a 3.4/ 6 in the household overnights from 8-11 p.m. (peaking in the 9 p.m. half-hour at a 4.0/ 7).

In season (or finale) news, “The F Word with Gordon Ramsay” closed its marginally rated first season with a quiet 1.1/ 2 in the 9 p.m. hour. The lead-in, “MasterChef,” averaged a 2.3/ 4 at 8 p.m. Note to Fox: One series this summer with Ramsay would have been more than enough.

Also original last night were two episodes of failing CBS drama “Salvation” at an average 1.9/ 3 from 9-11 p.m.

For the complete half-hour breakdown for Wednesday, August 16, clickhere

Live + Same Day Ratings
Monday 8/14/17: Click here
Tuesday 8/15/17: Click here

Source: Nielsen Media Research


OWN Orders Coming-Of-Age Drama Series from ‘Moonlight’s Tarell Alvin McCraney
OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network has greenlit a one-hour coming-of-age drama, still-to-be titled, from “Moonlight” co-writer and executive producer Tarell Alvin McCraney and Warner Horizon Scripted Television, the studio behind the network’s “Queen Sugar. Set in South Florida at the end of Barack Obama’s presidency, the series will follow a 14-year-old prodigy who is grieving the death of his best friend as he struggles to decide whether to stay in his community or leave to pursue a higher education. The storyline is inspired by events in McCraney’s own life.

McCraney is set to co-executive produce with actor Michael B. Jordan (“Creed,” “Fruitvale Station”).

McCraney and director Barry Jenkins won an Academy Award for co-writing “Moonlight,” which was based on McCraney’s semi-autobiographical play, “In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue.”

USA Eyes “Suits” Spin-Off 
USA Network and Universal Cable Productions have announced that the season seven finale of drama “Suits,” airing in the first quarter of 2018, will serve as a potential spin-off to center around powerhouse lawyer Jessica Pearson (Gina Torres). The logline: The season-ender will reunite Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht), Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams), Louis Litt (Rick Hoffman), Donna Paulsen (Sarah Rafferty) and Rachel Zane (Meghan Markle) with their old friend Pearson as she adjusts to her new life in the Windy City. When she is forced to enter the dirty world of Chicago politics, Pearson must rely on her legal wits and valiant relationships from Pearson Specter Litt to navigate this unknown territory.

The pilot will be executive produced and written by “Suits”  creator and executive producer Aaron Korsh and executive producer Daniel Arkin, and will be directed by “Suits” alum Anton Cropper (“House of Lies,” “Blackish”). Doug Liman, David Bartis and Gene Klein of Hypnotic (“Suits”) will also serve as executive producers.


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Carlton Cuse Signs Multi-Year Deal with ABC Studios
Writer, producer and director Carlton Cuse has re-joined ABC Studios in a multi-year overall deal.Cuse’s company, Genre Arts, will create and produce content across all network, cable and streaming platforms. Under the Genre Arts banner, Cuse will develop projects and collaborate with other writers to bring their visions to the screen under the new agreement.

This new venture marks a return for Cuse to ABC Studios, where he served as co-showrunner of “Lost” for six years. Since that time, Cuse placed six projects on a variety of cable outlets (including “Bates Motel” on A&E), working as a writer, showrunner and director on as many as four series simultaneously.

Casting News
Joy Nash (“Twin Peaks,” “The Mindy Project”) has been cast in the lead role of Plum in the network’s upcoming original AMC drama series “Dietland,” based on Sarai Walker’s 2015 novel of the same name. Set against the backdrop of the beauty industry, this part-character drama and part-revenge fantasy explores society’s obsession with weight loss and beauty in a bold, original and wickedly entertaining way. “Dietland” is slated to premiere on AMC with 10 episodes in 2018.

The Daily Brief Podcast
PromaxBDA Editorial Director Paige Albiniak and Programming Insider Editor in Chief Marc Berman discuss what went down at TCA 2017. Included are the issues of diversity, reboots and the upcoming new network series that show the most promise. To listen, click here

TV Comes Out About its Closeted Portrayals of LGBTQ: Click here
ABC to Focus on “American Idol” and “Roseanne” Reboots: Click here
Trump in Late Night: Too Much of an Absurd ThingClick here
TruTV Keeps Pushing New Comedy Brand Forward: Click  here
PBS Forges Ahead Despite Threat of Federal Funding Loss: Click here


The fourth season premiere of “Survivor’s Remorse” on Starz airs this Sunday, August 20th at 10 p.m. ET.  The logline: As the Calloways continue to grow as a family, season four takes a deeper dive into each character as they wrestle with adulthood and the secrets of their past. Life off the court continues to be a bigger game than the one on the court- and the human struggle doesn’t go away, no matter how much money or success they have. Grounded in relevant, true-to-life struggles, the critically-acclaimed series continues to tackle real-life current issues, no-holds-barred- and with a unique comedic touch.

TLC docuseries “My Giant Life,” featuring six women standing at 6 feet 6 inches and above. Will open season three on Sunday, Sept. 17 at 10 p.m. ET. Haleigh, Alicia Jay, Katja, Lindsay, Krista and Coco will take viewers inside their everyday lives as they deal with issues that far surpass height than ever before.

Season two of “Victoria” in the “Masterpiece” franchise on PBS will debut onSunday, January 14, 2018. The upcoming season will find Victoria (Jenna Coleman) adapting to motherhood after the birth of her first child, a daughter. Meanwhile, the disaster of the Anglo-Afghan War unfolds abroad, and the catastrophic Irish potato famine begins to wreak havoc.

Marc Berman is available for freelance, consulting or public speaking opportunities.
Contact Marc at 646/204-7937 or at marc@programminginsider.com
Who would you like to see exit “Big Brother” tonight in the first of two evictions? Click here
Season premieres: “Project Runway” on Lifetime, “Tiny House, Big Living”on DIY, and “Flipping Out” and “Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce” on Bravo…”Alone” concludes for the season on History…For the complete primetime schedule for Thursday, August 17, click here
No Crossovers

Which pair of TV series never featured any crossover appearances between the two?

a) “Alice” and “The Dukes of Hazzard”
b) “The Brady Bunch” and “The Partridge Family”
c) “Cheers” and “St. Elsewhere”
d) “Community” and “Cougar Town”
e) “The Donna Reed Show” and “Dennis the Menace”
f) They all did

The answer to yesterday’s question…

Which one of the following movies was never spun-off into a pilot for a proposed TV series?

a) “Beverly Hills Cop”
b) “Clerks”
c) “Darkman”
d) “Forrest Gump”
e) “Steel Magnolias”

Is: d) “Forrest Gump,” which resulted in a second consecutive Best Actor Oscar for star Tom Hanks.


Trivia All-Stars
Mark Amato, Gerry Bixenspan, Larry Collins, Maureen Goldman, Bob Ingersoll, David Jackino, Mary Kinoshita, Jody McIntyre, Derek Rogers, Joe Rubi, Neal Sabin, Joe Swaney, Jeanne Yonkers

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Valerie Milano is the well-connected Senior Editor and TV Critic at TheHollywoodTimes.Today, a showbiz/promotions aggregate mainly for insiders. She has written for Communications Daily, Hollywood Today, Television International, and Video Age International plus freelanced for others. Valerie donates and works closely with the Human Rights Campaign (Fed Club Council Member), GLSEN, Outfest, NCLR, LAMBDA Legal and the Desert Aids Project. She is a member of the Los Angeles Press Club. Milano loves meeting people and does so in her fave getaway Palm Springs as a member of the Palm Springs Museum of Art and the Old Las Palmas area community member. For years Valerie was a board member and one of the chief organizers for the Television Critics Association’s press tours. The tours take place twice a year in Beverly Hills/Pasadena.