TNT and TBS Announce Extensive Slate of New Projects from Top Talents, Including Mitch Albom, Thom Beers, Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, Conan O'Brien, Brad Paisley, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, Richard North Patterson, Ridley Scott, Tony Scott, Joel Silver, Arthur Smith, Scott Turow, Bertram van Munster and John Wells.
TNT Announces Plans for New Series Major Crimes, Starring Mary McDonnell, Debuting after Series Finale of The Closer in 2012
Conan O'Brien Will Take His TBS Show on the Road for the First Time With a Week-Long Visit to New York in Late 2011, Followed by a Trip to Chicago in 2012
TNT and TBS, which staged their Upfront presentation today in New York, are making bold moves to bolster their remarkably strong foundations in original programming. The networks are developing extensive new lineups of scripted and unscripted series and making a new push into half-hour comedy in partnership with some of the top talents in the industry, from award-winning actors to acclaimed producers, writers and best-selling authors.
This year marks the beginning of production of the final season of the blockbuster hit The Closer, starring Emmy(R) winner Kyra Sedgwick. TNT confirmed today that it has ordered a 10-episode season of Major Crimes, a series set in the Los Angeles Police Department that promises to become television's next great crime drama. The seventh and final season of The Closer will include 15 episodes in 2011 and six in summer 2012, leading into the launch of Major Crimes, starring Mary McDonnell (Battlestar Galactica). McDonnell has been featured on The Closer as Capt. Raydor, who was often on a collision course with Deputy Police Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson, played by Sedgwick. Major Crimes will be executive-produced by James Duff, creator of The Closer, along with Greer Shephard and Michael M. Robin. Major Crimes and The Closer come to TNT from Warner Bros. Television.
TNT is working with several chart-topping authors on a new lineup of original movies set to debut in November and December 2011. The TNT Tuesday Night Mystery (Working Title) will feature a slate of six contemporary crime dramas, from true-crime stories to fictional mysteries. TNT is developing the two-hour movie Innocent, based on the book by best-selling author Scott Turow. TNT is also developing movies based on Richard North Patterson's Silent Witness; Sandra Brown's Ricochet; Lisa Gardner's Hide; April Smith's Good Morning, Killer; and Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark's Deck the Halls. The TNT Tuesday Night Mystery marks TNT's return to original TV movies, a format that has earned the network many Emmys, along with unprecedented ratings that hold records yet today.
For TBS, Conan O'Brien is taking his late-night talk show CONAN on the road for the first time. O'Brien will set up shop at the Beacon Theater in New York Oct. 31-Nov. 3 to celebrate the first anniversary of his arrival at TBS. The event will Mark O'Brien's first stint in New York since he hosted Late Night with Conan O'Brien. In 2012, CONAN will hit the road again for a stop in Chicago.
TBS has also given the greenlight to The Wedding Band (Working Title), an hour-long comedy from FremantleMedia and Mike Tollin Productions. TBS has ordered 10 episodes of the series starring Brian Austin Green (Beverly Hills, 90210, Desperate Housewives), Harold Perrineau (Lost, Oz), Peter Cambor (NCIS: Los Angeles, Notes from the Underbelly), Derek Miller (Secret Girlfriend) and Melora Hardin (The Office). The show is executive-produced by Mike Tollin (Smallville, Arli$). Josh Lobis (South Park) and Darin Moiselle (South Park), who wrote the pilot, serve as co-executive producers with Ben Spector (Two Brothers). Bryan Gordon (Curb Your Enthusiasm) directed and also served as co-executive producer on the pilot. The show, which follows the misadventures of four friends who spend their spare time performing in a band, is slated to premiere in summer 2012.
In 2011-12, TNT is bringing back seven hit series, including basic cable's #1 show, Rizzoli & Isles; The Closer; and recent Peabody Award winner Men of a Certain Age. Also returning are Leverage, HawthoRNe, Memphis Beat and Southland. TNT will launch two new series this summer: Falling Skies, the eagerly anticipated series from DreamWorks Television and executive producer Steven Spielberg, starring Noah Wyle; and Franklin & Bash, a light-hearted lawyer drama from Sony Pictures Television. For 2012, TNT has ordered Perception from ABC Studios, a series starring Emmy and Screen Actors Guild Award(R) winner Eric McCormack (Will & Grace) that centers on a neuroscientist who works to solve complex criminal cases.
"We understand that exceptional programming comes from working with exceptional talent," said Michael Wright, executive vice president, head of programming for TNT, TBS and Turner Classic Movies (TCM). "We hire the best actors, actresses, writers, producers and directors in the business, give them a clear creative target and then try to get out of their way and let them make terrific television."
"With strong brands and solid foundations in programming, TNT and TBS present a great value proposition to our clients," said David Levy, president of sales, distribution and sports, Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. "Turner continues to make investments in original programming that has broad demographic appeal for advertisers and their brand messages, helping create meaningful connections with consumers everywhere TNT and TBS live, from on-air to online."
TNT and TBS today revealed these extensive development plans:
TNT scripted series in development
Untitled Kip Koenig/John Wells Productions Project - Set against the backdrop of the Pacific Northwest, this drama follows a family of cops who uncover the mystical and often crime-ridden world of a small town where things aren't as they appear. The project comes to TNT from Warner Horizon Television, Kip Koenig (Grey's Anatomy) and John Wells Productions (Southland, Shameless, The West Wing).
Scent of the Missing - A search-and-rescue officer braves the harshest conditions with her best friend and partner, a Labrador retriever. Based on the book of the same name, Scent of the Missing comes to TNT from CBS Television Studios and executive producers Barry Josephson (Bones) and Carol Mendelsohn (CSI) and producers Diane Nabatoff (Take The Lead) and Shelly Glasser (The Good Girl).
Gateway - In a nation still healing from the Civil War, lawlessness rules the small towns of the Old West. Three brothers bound by duty, honor and self-preservation take a stand. Together, they fight to survive and thrive - all in a small town called Gateway. The series comes to TNT from Warner Horizon Television, Bruce McKenna (The Pacific, Band of Brothers), Danny Cannon (CSI) and Deran Serafian (House, CSI).
Untitled Eric Garcia Project - A daydreaming police clerk's overactive imagination isn't just a way to escape her mundane work life. It's also her mind's way of helping detectives solve crime. The project comes to TNT from Warner Horizon Television, Eric Garcia (Matchstick Men) and executive producers McG (Terminator Salvation, the Charlie's Angels movies) and Peter Johnson (Supernatural) of Wonderland Sound and Vision (Supernatural, Chuck, The O.C.).
Untitled Jay Cocks Project - Based on the character from the Laura Lippman series of books, this drama centers on Tess Monaghan, a former newspaper reporter who has become a private eye in the tough city of Baltimore. The project comes to TNT from Jay Cocks (Gangs of New York) and Bill Haber's Ostar Productions (TNT's Rizzoli & Isles).
Untitled Shaun Cassidy/Kimberly Williams-Paisley Project - When a hot Southern mess of a family takes in their widowed daughter-in-law and her gifted young son, these vibrant characters all in their own way come to learn that it's not the family you're born into that counts but the family you make. This emotional comedy/drama, set in and around the bucolic town of Franklin, Tenn., comes to TNT from executive producers Kimberly Williams-Paisley (According to Jim), Brad Paisley and Shaun Cassidy (Roar, Invasion).
Untitled Mitch Albom Project - Set in a Detroit radio station, this drama follows a station manager who, against his wishes, returns home to try and breathe life into his struggling city. The project comes to TNT from best-selling author and columnist Mitch Albom (Tuesdays with Morrie).