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[01/07/04 - 12:00 AM]
TCA Winter Press Tour: Espn
By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)

CHICAGO (thefutoncritic.com) -- The Television Critics Association began its winter press tour this week in which the various broadcast and cable networks talk about their upcoming plans to the nation's top critics and entertainment reporters.

Here's a breakdown of the highlights of ESPN's presentation (via press release):

ESPN TO PRODUCE THIRD ORIGINAL MOVIE "3: THE DALE EARNHARDT STORY" TO PREMIERE SUMMER 2004

NETWORK UNVEILS MOVIE PROJECTS CURRENTLY IN DEVELOPMENT, INCLUDING "HUSTLE: THE PETE ROSE STORY"

FRANK DEFORD, BUD GREENSPAN TO WRITE AND PRODUCE FUTURE ESPN PROJECTS

Continuing its long-term commitment to provide quality original sports entertainment programming, ESPN today announced the start of production of its third original, made-for-television movie, "3: The Dale Earnhardt Story," an ESPN Original Entertainment (EOE) production based on the storied life and career of the late auto racing legend. The movie is set to premiere late summer 2004. In addition, ESPN announced an ambitious new slate of original compelling movie projects currently in development for 2004-2005.

Orly Adelson of Orly Adelson Productions ("The Truth About Jane," The Junction Boys"), who serves as executive producer of ESPN�s critically acclaimed dramatic series "Playmakers," will also serve as executive producer of "3." Russell Mulcahy ("Skin," "Queer as Folk," "Ricochet") will direct from a screenplay by TV writer-producer Robert Eisele ("Resurrection Blvd.").

"Earnhardt�s untimely and tragic death in the final lap at the 2001 Daytona 500 was one of sports� most tragic days," said Ron Semiao, ESPN senior vice president, ESPN Original Entertainment. "His death not only altered the auto racing landscape but introduced a new generation of sports fans to his legacy. �3� will explore his rise to dominance and the many reasons why there may never be another one like him."

FUTURE MOVIE PROJECTS

EOE�s new movie projects range in subject matter from Pete Rose to Roger Bannister to the West Point Scandal of 1951 and will feature the storytelling talents of Frank DeFord and the production expertise of filmmaker Bud Greenspan.

"Clearly movies and entertainment projects have successfully expanded ESPN's reach and are now an intrinsic leg of our programming mix, along with events and sports news," said Mark Shapiro, ESPN executive vice president, programming and production. "With this slate of movies in development, led by Earnhardt�s tale of triumph and tragedy, ESPN is committing to an aggressive schedule of quality movies tackling some of sports' most compelling subjects."

Following is a sample of some of the network�s upcoming movie projects currently in development:

"Hustle: The Pete Rose Story" - is an original screenplay by Christian Darren ("Count Three and Pray," and "Six Bullets from Now") and is in the final stages of development. "Rose" will be executive produced by Orly Adelson;

"Four Minutes"- is based on Roger Bannister�s breaking of the four-minute mile in 1953. Award-winning journalist, author and sports commentator Frank DeFord was recently hired by ESPN to write the script. The movie will be produced by Gerry Abrams ("Nuremberg") and acclaimed Olympic filmmaker Bud Greenspan;

"October Men"- is based on the book by renowned baseball author Roger Kahn -- best known for his classic "The Boys Of Summer." The adaptation will be an in-depth account of two of the most memorable summers in baseball history, 1977 and 1978 - the years the "Bronx Zoo" New York Yankees won consecutive World Series. Jerry Harrison will serve as executive producer;

"The Bob Delaney Story"- is based on the life of NBA referee Bob Delaney, who 25 years ago was an undercover agent infiltrating the New Jersey mob. ESPN has acquired the rights to his life story;

"West Point Scandal"- is based on a Sports Illustrated article by Frank DeFord on the 1951 Army football team cribbing scandal. ESPN has acquired the rights to that article.





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· CODE BREAKERS (ESPN)
· FOUR MINUTES (ESPN)
· HUSTLE: THE PETE ROSE STORY (ESPN)
· JUNCTION BOYS, THE (ESPN)
· NUREMBERG (TNT)
· OCTOBER MEN (ESPN)
· PLAYMAKERS (ESPN)
· QUEER AS FOLK (SHOWTIME)
· RESURRECTION BLVD. (SHOWTIME)
· SKIN (FOX)
· THREE: THE DALE EARNHARDT STORY (ESPN)
· TRUTH ABOUT JANE, THE (LIFETIME)
· WHISTLEBLOWER: THE BOB DELANEY STORY (ESPN)











[03/03/15 - 11:07 PM]
Development Update: Tuesday, March 3
Updates include: IFC cancels "Garfunkel & Oates"; Jon Foo set as lead in "Rush Hour" at CBS; and Jack Gore is the "Problem Child" at NBC.

[03/03/15 - 04:07 PM]
Idris Elba Steps Onto Set for "Luther" Two-Part Special
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[03/03/15 - 03:18 PM]
Spike TV Partners with Dwayne Johnson for Event Programming Development Deal
Johnson and Dany Garcia will executive produce shows ranging from big live events, specials, sports and initiatives surrounding our troops and veterans.

[03/03/15 - 03:12 PM]
"Ellen's Design Challenge" Among Highest-Rated Series in HGTV History
HGTV spins the numbers for Monday, March 2.

[03/03/15 - 02:39 PM]
"Live with Kelly and Michael" Announces Its Sixth Annual "Top Teacher Week"
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[03/03/15 - 02:22 PM]
Social Media Powerhouse ABC Family Delivers During February 2015 Driven by "Pretty Little Liars" and "The Fosters"
ABC Family spins the digital numbers for the month of February.

[03/03/15 - 02:21 PM]
Spike: The Ones to Watch - Network Launches New Logo and Tagline
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[03/03/15 - 12:56 PM]
TNT Ranks as Basic Cable's #1 Network in Primetime Live + 7 Delivery of Total Viewers, Adults 18-34 and Adults 18-49
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[03/03/15 - 12:54 PM]
"48 Hours: Blaming Melissa" Is Saturday's #1 Program with Viewers and Adults 25-54
CBS spins the numbers for Saturday, February 28.

[03/03/15 - 12:37 PM]
Science Channel Skyrockets in February, Charts Best Month Ever
Science Channel spins the numbers for the month of February.

[03/03/15 - 12:31 PM]
Sarah Michelle Gellar to Star in Season 2 of "Star Wars Rebels"
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[03/03/15 - 11:52 AM]
Nickelodeon Brings Ultimate "Kids' Choice Awards" Interactive Experiences to Kids and Families Nationwide
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[03/03/15 - 11:45 AM]
Ovation TV Greenlights Production on Original Documentary Film, "Ford's Theatre: America's Playhouse"
The project is being co-produced by Ovation Studios and 1895 Films and is set to premiere on April 14 at 10:00/9:00c.

[03/03/15 - 11:13 AM]
truTV Says Yes They Can to The Grawlix's "Those Who Can't," As Network Greenlights Its First-Ever Full-Length Scripted Comedy
The comedy about a trio of frustrated high school teachers stars show creators Adam Cayton-Holland, Andrew Orvedahl and Ben Roy, members of the Denver-based comedy troupe The Grawlix.

[03/03/15 - 11:11 AM]
Spike TV Orders Eight More Episodes of "Lip Sync Battle"
The featured performers for the new eight episodes include Emily Blunt, Anne Hathaway, Terrence Howard, Taraji P. Henson, Justin Bieber, Queen Latifah, Will Arnett, Alison Brie, Mike Tyson and Terry Crews.