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Tuesday, May 2, 2017
ON THIS DAY                                                                          
ABC action/adventure “The Fall Guy, starring Lee Majors, concluded in 1986 after five seasons…Phil Donahue taped the final edition of his syndicated daytime talk show, “Donahue, in 1996, which aired for 29 years….In 2010, Conan O’Brienmade his first television appearance since exiting NBC’s “The Tonight Show. He did an interview with Steve Kroft on CBS’ “60 Minutes”…Celebrity Birthdays: “The Good Fight” star Christine Baranski is 65; designer Donatella Versace is 62;Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is 45; soccer player David Beckham is 42; “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” star Ellie Kemper is 37.

-Did You Know?:
Lee Majors got his big break when he was chosen over 400 actors, including Burt Reynolds, for the role of Heath Barkley on ABC western “The Big Valley.” It aired from 1965 to 1969 and also featured another newcomer, Linda Evans.

RATINGS BOX                                                                            

Monday 5/01/17

Household Rating/Share
ABC: 5.5/ 9, NBC: 4.9/ 8, CBS: 3.8/ 6, Fox: 2.2/ 4, CW: 1.0/ 2

-Percent Change from the Year-Ago Evening:
CW: +43, Fox: no change, NBC: -11, CBS: -17, ABC: -20,

Ratings Breakdown:
It was the usual scenario on this first Monday in May. ABC led in the household overnights thanks to a dominant 7.2 rating/12 share for “Dancing with the Stars” from 8-10 p.m. And the home of “The Voice,” NBC, will win the night in adults 18-49 (and all the key young adult demographics). “The Voice” scored a 5.9/10 in the household overnights. But both ABC’s “Quantico” (#3: 2.0/ 3) and the season (or series) finale of “Taken” on NBC (#2: 3.0/ 6) lost considerably steam in the 10 p.m. hour. Chances of a second season of “Taken” are highly unlikely.

In return series news, Fox drama “Lucifer” finished fourth in the 9 p.m. hour with a 2.3/ 4. Comparably, that was a slight improvement from lead-in “Gotham” (#4: 2.2/ 3 at 8 p.m.) and 28 percent above the season (or series) finale of crime solver “APB” one week earlier (1.8/ 3 on April 24).

For more (including the breakdown by half-hour) for Monday, May 1, clickhere

Live + Same Day Data
Monday 4/24/17: Click here
Tuesday 4/25/17: Click here
Wednesday 4/26/17: Click here
Thursday 4/27/17: Click here
Friday 4/28/17: Click here

Source: Nielsen Media Research

The Sternberg Report provides insights and analysis into TV/Video programming, research, measurement issues, big and small data, broadcast and cable networks, premium and streaming services, social media, and much more.

Contact Steve Sternberg at sternbergreport@gmail.com.to receive the latest issue for free and find out about subscribing. For more information, click here


Fox Cancels Drama “Pitch”
Fox, not surprisingly, has opted against a second season of scripted drama “Pitch.” Debuting on Sept. 22, 2016 and produced in partnership with Major League Baseball, “Pitch” focused on a young pitcher named Ginny Baker (Kylie Bunbury) who becomes the first woman to play in the Major Leagues after she is chosen to play for the San Diego Padres. Ten episodes in total were produced and the now series finale aired on Dec. 8.

Said Kylie Bunbury in an Instagram post: “Ginny Baker has profoundly changed my life and I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to play a role that resonated with so many people. I wasn’t ready to let go of Ginny, but more than anything I wasn’t ready to let go of my “Pitch “family- the cast, crew, creators and writers, thank you for the magic.”

Hulu Picks Up “Freakish” for Season Two
Hulu and AwesomenessTV have greenlit teen horror series “Freak” for a second season, with an order for 10 new half-hour episodes.  The logline: In season two, the Kent High School students are still trapped inside by the deadly explosion and will find their relationships tested when a new group of survivors arrives. Friendships will be lost, enemies made, and ventures outside into the dangerous unknown will present life and death stakes for the students.

Leo Howard, Liza Koshy, Adam Hicks, Meghan Rienks, Melvin Gregg, and Tyler Chase will reprise their roles. “Freakish” was created by Beth Szymkowski who will return as executive producer alongside Shelley Zimmerman, Chris Grismer, Kay Reindl and Erin Maher. Freakish is produced by AwesomenessTV.

Season one of “Freakish” is currently streaming on Hulu.

Sundance TV Renews “Hap and Leonard” for Season Three
SundanceTV has announced the renewal of the network’s original scripted anthology series “Hap and Leonard.” The dark comedy series, set in the late 1980s and based on the book series of the same name by Joe R. Lansdale, follows two lifelong best friends, Hap Collins (James Purefoy), an East Texas white guy with a weakness for Southern women, and Leonard Pine (Michael Kenneth Williams), a gay, black Vietnam vet with a hot temper. Six new episodes have been ordered for 2018.

The third season of “Hap and Leonard,” will take inspiration from “The Two-Bear Mambo,” the third installment of Lansdale’s book series. Season one was inspired by the first “Hap and Leonard” novel “Savage Season,” and season two from “Mucho Mojo,” the second book in the series.

Each season of the anthology series features new supporting characters and a new mystery for Hap and Leonard to solve, with casting for season three to commence shortly.  Produced by AMC Studios, John Wirth (“Hell on Wheels,” “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles”) will return as showrunner and executive producer for season three, and Jim Mickle, Nick Damici, Jeremy Platt, and Linda Moran will return as executive producers.

‘Tis the season for the Fall TV Preview!
To book a presentation, contact Marc Berman at Marc@programminginsider.com or 646/204-7937



Fremantle North America and Debmar-Mercury to Test-Run Judy Sheindlin Game Show ‘iWitness”
FremantleMedia North America (FMNA) and Debmar-Mercuryt are collaborating  will  with co-production partner Judge Judy Sheindlin’s Queen Bee  Prods. on a six-week summer test for new game show “iWitness” (working title).Hosted by comedian John Henson (“Wipeout,” “Talk Soup”), the syndicated series is set to launch on Monday, July 10 on select Fox owned & operated stations in top markets, including New York.

The logline: the fast-paced game show, created by Sheindlin (“Judge Judy,” “Hot Bench”), will feature three contestants on each half-hour episode facing off to test their powers of observation. Contestants’ ability to recall what they’ve just witnessed will be tested through video clips and images spanning the media landscape. The winner will have a chance to advance to the final round and compete for a $20,000 grand prize.

Scott St. John (“Match Game,” “Celebrity Name Game”) will serve as showrunner of “iWitness” which FremantleMedia North America and Debmar-Mercury will launch nationally in fall 2018 (pending the results from the test-run). Debmar-Mercury will handle domestic distribution and FremantleMedia international distribution.

IFC Acquires “Baroness Von Sketch Show”
IFC has acquired a new “slightly off” sketch comedy series “Baroness von Sketch Show,” which celebrates the absurd, mines the embarrassing and satirizes our daily lives. The show is performed and written by Meredith MacNeill and Second City alumni Carolyn Taylor, Aurora Browne and Jennifer Whalen. IFC will air 13 episodes of seasons one and two of the half-hour comedy series beginning in late summer.

The logline” Fast-paced and irreverent, “Baroness von Sketch Show” and its all-female cast draws upon 15 years of comedy experience and multiple collaborations to present an insightful, emotionally grounded series that captures the banalities and humor that comes from just trying to get along in the world. Offering a witty take on everyday concerns from the pretentiousness of ordering a fancy coffee to office and sexual politics, this satirical sketch comedy satirizes daily modern life. For a glimpse, click here

“Baroness von Sketch Show “ is produced by Frantic Films and originates on the CBC in Canada. It is distributed internationally by Banijay Rights.


Cable Upfront Recaps at PromaxBDA:
-BET Announces New Series from Kevin Hart, Chris Rock and Steve Harvey – Clickhere
-TV One Looks to “Represent” the African American Community – Click here
Freeform Prepares for Life Without “Pretty Little Liars” – Click here
More Scripted Programming on Tap at Nat Geo – Click here
-Pop Targets “Modern Grown Ups” with New Slate – Click here
-Discovery Turns Its Focus to Digital – Click here
-Lifestyle Matters, According to Scripps – Click here
-Nickelodeon Touts 700 Hours of Original New and Returning Programming – Click here

Bill O’Reilly and Syndication: A Match Made in Desperation: Click here
The Value of Social Media in Upfront Season: Click here

From Clippit

Jimmy Kimmel Reveals His Newborn Son Had Heart Surgery
At the start of ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” last night, Jimmy Kimmel used his monologue to open up about his baby son Billy’s recent diagnosis of heart disease and the successful heart surgery that followed soon after. Billy Kimmel was born on April 21. Later, Kimmel’s guest Dr. Mehmet Oz further explained the problems of Billy’s heart. For a look, click here


Bob Boden has been named Executive Vice President of Production and Development at Byron Allen-owned Entertainment Studios. In his new position, Boden will produce and develop new game and reality projects for Entertainment Studios’ television slate of existing and upcoming projects, including game show “Funny You Should Ask,” across multiple platforms – broadcast syndication, cable television and digital. Boden, who has held positions at ABC, CBS, Game Show Network/GSN, FX, Fox Reality Channel, The Family Channel, Mark Goodson Productions, Dick Clark Productions and Hasbro Studios, was most recently executive producer of GSN game show “The Chase.”  Congratulations Bob! And, yes, I still feel the need for “Greed!”

Vincent J. Sollecito has been named President, ABC National Television Sales, for the ABC Owned Television Stations Group. He succeeds Debra O’Connell, who was named Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing, in Disney | ABC’s recently announced portfolio-wide advertising sales team. In his new role, Sollecito, an 18-year veteran of the ABC Owned Station Group, will be responsible for managing and directing the sales and marketing arm of all ABC Owned Stations ad revenue offerings including television, digital and digital sales performance/advertising operations, regional sports and entertainment sales/out-of-home ad sales, and the Live Well Network, as well as sales promotion, marketing and creative services, sales research, data and insights and systems engineering.   Additionally, Sollecito will lead the overall sales strategy for the Owned Stations division as it continues to develop and shape future revenue opportunities.


Six-part miniseries “America’s Secret Space Heroes,” which explores some of the world’s greatest space endeavors through the firsthand accounts of NASA’s engineering geniuses, will premiere on Smithsonian Channel on Sunday, May 14 at 9 p.m. ET. The logline: These incredible minds turned science fiction into reality, taking on the job of building rockets, landers, satellites and everything else NASA needed to conquer space. The astronauts won the glory, but “America’s Secret Space Heroes”  reveals the men and women who quietly overcame unprecedented challenges to create the lunar lander, the Space Shuttle, the International Space Station, the Hubble Telescope, and the spacecraft that started the march to Mars.

The new season of “Decker: Unsealed” will open on Adult Swim in Sunday, June 4 at 12 a.m. ET. The logline: This time around, President Davidson Jr. (Joe Estevez) recounts more of Jack Decker’s patriotic adventures to his son and protégé: Jack Decker Jr (Tim Heidecker). All the while, a powerful enemy plots against Decker Jr. to avenge the murder of his father. The show also prominently features master CIA codebreaker Jonathan Kington (Gregg Turkington).  Guest stars include Joey Travolta, Alfonso Freeman, Jimmy McNichol, Kellee Maize, Steve Railsback, and Denny Laine.

The second season of TBS sitcom “Wrecked” will open on Tuesday, June 20 with a two-episode premiere beginning at 10 p.m. ET. “Wrecked” is described as a survival comedy about a diverse group of airplane passengers stranded on an uninhabited island, a dangerous new world where they must face many threats – mostly brought on by themselves. The logline: No longer plugged into the rest of the world, the group struggles to navigate their makeshift society while also learning to live without such modern comforts as indoor plumbing, wi-fi, social media and Chipotle.

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What do you think about Ryan Seacrest being named the new co-host opposite Kelly Ripa on morning talk show “Live”? Click here
E’s “Fashion Police” reports on the 2017 Met Gala. Freeform debuts late night talker “Truth & Iliza. Fox sitcom “The Mick” concludes for the season. “Below Deck: Mediterranean” opens new season on Bravo.  For the schedule listings for Tuesday, May 2, click here
The daily trivia question is below “You Might Like.”
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Surviving Season One

Which one of the following series aired for two seasons?

a) “Birds of Prey”
b) “Dog and Cat”
c) “Fish Police”
d) “Shark”
e) “Wolf”

The answer to yesterday’s question…

Which one of the following actors on acclaimed 1980s NBC police drama “Hill Street Blues” did not win an Emmy Award for his or her performance?

a) Barbara Babcock
b) Michael Conrad
c) Betty Thomas
d) Daniel J. Travanti
e) Bruce Weitz
f) They all did

Is: f) they all did. “Hill Street Blues,” in total, won 26 Emmy Awards (with 98 nominations in total).

Trivia All-Stars
Matt Bradley, Larry Collins, Maureen Goldman, Bob Ingersoll, David Jackino, Ken Jobe, Synda Kollman, Jody McIntyre, Tom Moore, Michael Murphy, Richard Naldrett, Gordon Purcell, Steve Rotterdam, David Ruckman, Art Salish,

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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.