[06/22/04 - 12:00 AM]
ABC Plans 'The Days' for Sundays
By Brian Ford Sullivan (TFC)

LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- ABC will beef up its first-run offerings next month as the network has scheduled its new drama series "The Days" for Sundays at 10:00/9:00c starting July 18.

To help promote the launch, the Alphabet is also set to air a new episode of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" ("The Imbriani Family") that night at 9:00/8:00c. "Home Edition" will then continue to air Sundays at 9:00/8:00c for the remainder of "The Days'" run. Leading into "Home Edition" will be back-to-back repeats of "America's Funniest Home Videos" for the time being.

"The Days" revolves around a dysfunctional suburban Philadelphia family in which both the mother and her teenage daughter become pregnant at about the same time. Each episode will consist of the family's "day" as seen through the eyes of their 14-year-old child, Cooper (Evan Peters). Marguerite MacIntyre ("The Shield"), David Newsom ("Prodigy"), Laura Ramsey and Zach Maurer also star in the project, which has a six-episode order.

In addition to being one of ABC's rare scripted programming attempts during the summer months, "The Days" also marks a unique milestone in terms of advertiser/network relations. ABC itself will pay almost nothing to air the six-episode run as media buyer Mindshare will finance the bulk of the show's production budget. In exchange, ABC and Mindshare will split the advertising revenue from the series. The move gives ABC fresh programming on the cheap as well as Mindshare a chance to integrate its client's products, everything from Lipton's to Slim-Fast, into the series. Both the network and Mindshare are quick to point out however that the integration isn't very noticeable and won't take the commercialized feel that similar placements in NBC's "The Restaurant" and Bravo's "Blow Out" do.

John Scott Shepherd ("Life or Something Like It") created and will executive produce "The Days," which comes from both Mindshare and Tollin-Robbins Productions.

Meanwhile, in other ABC news:

-- The network's five-part series, "Weddings," is set to wrap on Monday, July 12 at 10:00/9:00c while "N.Y.P.D. 24/7" will close its seven week run on Tuesday, August 3 at 10:00/9:00c.

-- "The Ultimate Love Test," ABC's latest reality entry, has been slated to finish its first season on Wednesday, July 21 at 10:00/9:00c.

-- To help promote their moves to Friday nights this fall, ABC will double pump "Eight Simple Rules" on Tuesdays at 8:00/7:00c and Fridays at 8:30/7:30c starting July 30 as well as "Less Than Perfect" on Tuesdays at 9:30/8:30c and Fridays at 9:30/8:30c beginning August 6.

-- While "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" is set to resuming running on ABC Thursday nights at 8:00/7:00c beginning June 24, the series will make the switch to Saturdays at 10:00/9:00c as of July 31. So far nine previously unaired installments have been slated to air: #602 (June 24), #424 (July 1), #348 (July 8), #428 (July 15), #347 (July 22), #345 (July 29), #505 (July 31), #430 (August 7) and #314 (August 14).

  [june 2004]  

· NYPD 24/7 (ABC)

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