UPN MAKES BOLD SCHEDULING MOVE ON THURSDAY WITH HIGHLY ANTICIPATED SERIES "EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS" TO LEAD OFF A NIGHT OF COMEDIES AS PART OF UPN�S 2005-2006 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE
UPN Adds Three New Series To Its Fall Lineup:
Comedy "Everybody Hates Chris" Is Based on Chris Rock's Childhood Experiences;
Shannen Doherty and Holly Robinson Peete Headline Comedy "Love, Inc.";
Denise Richards Leads an Ensemble Cast in the New Drama "Sex, Lies & Secrets"
Jennifer Lopez-Produced Drama SOUTH BEACH Ordered for Mid-Season
UPN unveiled its 2005-2006 fall lineup featuring three new shows, headlined by an aggressive scheduling move on Thursday night with the highly anticipated series EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS leading off a new comedy block, it was announced today at Madison Square Garden by Dawn Ostroff, President, UPN.
This bold move of scheduling comedies on Thursdays is underscored by the fact that UPN has never had regularly scheduled episodic programming on this night. Additionally, the lineup serves as good counter programming on a night where UPN is the only network with a two-hour block of comedies.
In addition to EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS, based on the childhood experiences of comedian Chris Rock, who is also and narrating and executive producing, UPN will also broadcast the new comedy LOVE, INC., with Shannen Doherty and Holly Robinson Peete, and a new drama, SEX, LIES & SECRETS, with Denise Richards leading the ensemble cast.
Also, UPN is returning nine established series to its 2005-2006 schedule, including reality hit AMERICA�S NEXT TOP MODEL; critically acclaimed drama VERONICA MARS; popular comedies GIRLFRIENDS, EVE, ONE ON ONE, CUTS, ALL OF US and HALF & HALF; and fan-favorite WWE SMACKDOWN!.
The popular music special THE VIBE AWARDS ON UPN will also return this November. Additionally, the new drama SOUTH BEACH, executive produced by Jennifer Lopez and starring Vanessa L. Williams, has been ordered for mid season.
During UPN�s Upfront presentation to an influential audience of advertisers, media buyers, press and industry executives, Ostroff outlined the Network�s strategy behind UPN�s 2005-2006 schedule.
Monday night�s popular and well established lineup of comedies continues with only one change, which is the addition of ALL OF US at 8:30. In announcing the Monday night shows, Ostroff noted that UPN worked closely with Nielsen to study ratings fluctuations on its Monday night and discovered that in updating the sample, Nielsen was under counting African American women. Ostroff told the audience that this change was masking real growth on the night and if the change in the sample had not occurred, UPN�s Monday ratings would have been even further up in the second half of the season.
On Tuesdays, UPN is taking advantage of the competitive landscape to launch a hot, edgy new drama SEX, LIES & SECRETS, with Denise Richards, following an encore presentation of the previous week�s episode of AMERICA�S NEXT TOP MODEL.
Wednesday night will continue to lead off with the very popular and highly rated AMERICA�S NEXT TOP MODEL, followed by one of the most buzzed about dramas on television, VERONICA MARS.
On Thursdays, UPN is counter programming as the only network with back-to-back comedies by creating an exciting new night lead by EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS, followed by EVE, CUTS and LOVE, INC.
Finally, on Friday, UPN has one of the most established franchises on television with WWE SMACKDOWN!.
NEW COMEDIES (all times ET/PT):
EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS (Thursday, 8:00-8:30 PM) is inspired by the childhood experiences of comedian Chris Rock, who narrates the hilarious, touching story of a teenager growing up as the eldest of three children in Brooklyn, New York during the early 1980's. Uprooted to a new neighborhood and bused to a predominantly white middle school two-hours away by his strict, hard-working parents, Chris struggles to find his place while keeping his siblings in line at home and surmounting the challenges of junior high. This responsible, resilient adolescent brings a distinct, funny spin to his everyday trials and traumas. The single-camera comedy series stars Tichina Arnold ("Big Momma's House") as Rochelle, Terry Crews ("White Chicks") as Julius, Tyler Williams as Chris, Tequan Richmond ("Ray") as Drew, Imani Hakim as Tonya, and Vincent Martella ("Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo") as Greg. EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS is a production of Chris Rock Enterprises, Inc. in association with Paramount Network Television. Chris Rock ("Head of State"), Ali LeRoi ("Head of State"), Howard Gewirtz ("Oliver Beene"), Michael Rotenberg ("The Chris Rock Show") and Dave Becky ("The Hugleys") are executive producers.
LOVE, INC. (Thursday, 9:30-10:00 PM) follows Denise Johnson, an energetic, pragmatic young woman who takes pride in her success as a full-service dating consultant. As the female version of a "wingman," this savvy matchmaker and her quirky co-workers help lovelorn single men, and even women, present the best image possible to just the right prospects. Skilled at helping her clients find their seemingly unattainable soulmates, Denise continues to grapple with her inability to find one herself. The series stars Shannen Doherty ("Charmed") as Denise, Reagan Gomez-Preston ("Beauty Shop") as Francine, Vince Vieluf ("Grind") as Barry, Ion Overman ("General Hospital") as Viviana, and Holly Robinson Peete ("For Your Love") as Clea. LOVE, INC. is a production of Chase TV, The Littlefield Company and Burg/Koules in association with Paramount Network Television. Adam Chase ("Friends"), Warren Littlefield ("Keen Eddie") and Mark Burg & Oren Koules ("Two and a Half Men") are executive producers. Writer Andrew Secunda ("Late Night with Conan O'Brien") is a co-executive producer.
SEX, LIES & SECRETS (Tuesday, 9:00-10:00 PM), set in the small, hip neighborhood of Silver Lake, on the outskirts of Hollywood, is a fresh, edgy new drama that explores the intimate and often complex relationships of a tight-knit group of friends finding out who they are and what they want in life. These twenty-somethings have become a family sharing everything, but as in any family, the need to protect each other can often compel these friends to keep secrets that sometimes do more harm than good. The new drama stars Denise Richards ("Scary Movie 3") as Jolene, Eric Balfour ("Six Feet Under") as Charlie, Lauren German ("The Texas Chainsaw Massacre") as Rose, Omar Miller ("Shall We Dance") as Coop, Tamara Taylor ("Diary of a Mad Black Woman") as Nina, and James Stevenson ("Hope and Faith") as Hank. SEX, LIES & SECRETS is produced by Axelrod/Edwards Company in association with Paramount Network Television. Jonathan Axelrod, Kelly Edwards and Daniel Cerone ("Clubhouse") are executive producers. Michael Gans & Richard Register ("Celebrity Deathmatch") are co-executive producers and writers.
SOUTH BEACH (Day/Time TBD) revolves around Matt and Vince, best friends filled with aspirations of a better future, as they abandon their world as they know it and head to the alluring paradise of sandy beaches, beautiful people and hot spots in glamorous South Beach. Matt's preoccupation with his old, fashion-model girlfriend has him diving head first into her thrilling new life, even though she has moved on, and Vince, willing to do anything to get ahead, uncovers the dangerous and possibly seedy underbelly of SOUTH BEACH. The series stars Marcus Coloma ("Point Pleasant") as Matt, Chris Johnson ("xXx: State of the Union") as Vincent, Lee Thompson Young ("Friday Night Lights") as Ian, and Vanessa L. Williams ("Johnson Family Vacation") as Elizabeth. SOUTH BEACH is produced by Nuyorican Productions and Flame Television in association with Paramount Network Television. Tony Krantz ("The Bad Girl's Guide"), Jennifer Lopez ("Monster-in-Law"), Simon Fields ("Shall We Dance?") and Philip Levens ("Smallville") are executive producers.
VIBE AWARDS ON UPN is a two-hour special event dedicated to celebrating innovation, cutting-edge presentation and genre expanding work in urban music, to be broadcast this fall on UPN. The show will again feature chart-topping, contemporary musical performances and special celebrity appearances from the worlds of film, television, sports, fashion and music. The 2004 VIBE AWARDS ON UPN was a production of Vibe magazine, Flavor Unit Television Entertainment and White Cherry Entertainment.
RETURNING SERIES (all times ET/PT):
ONE ON ONE (Monday, 8:00-8:30 PM) kicks off its fifth season with 18-year-old Breanna and her boyfriend Arnaz entering a new phase in their lives as young adults living away from home, as Breanna starts college and Arnaz follows her to pursue his music career. After four years of balancing parenthood and friendship, her father, sportscaster Flex Washington, has to deal with a more grown-up Breanna on her own for the very first time. The series stars Flex Alexander ("Out Cold") as Mark "Flex" Washington, Kyla Pratt ("Fat Albert") as Breanna Barnes, Kelly Perine ("Between Brothers") as Duane, Sicily as Spirit, and Robert Ri�chard ("Coach Carter") as Arnaz. ONE ON ONE is produced by The Greenblatt Janollari Studio and Daddy�s Girl Productions in association with Paramount Network Television. Creator Eunetta T. Boone ("My Wife and Kids") is executive producer.
ALL OF US (Monday, 8:30-9:00 PM), inspired by the domestic adventures of entertainment superstars Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, returns for a third season to reflect a new generation's enlightened attitude toward the extended family dynamic with humor, sensitivity and heart. Robert James, an entertainment reporter for a local Los Angeles television station, is divorced from the somewhat self-absorbed Neesee, mother of their endearing six-year-old son, Bobby Junior. Robert is set to wed Tia, a clever kindergarten teacher who has learned to accept Neesee as an ongoing part of her life with Robert. ALL OF US stars Duane Martin ("Deliver Us from Eva") as Robert James Sr., LisaRaye McCoy ("Beauty Shop") as Neesee James, Elise Neal ("The Hughleys") as Tia Jewel, Khamani Griffin ("Daddy Day Care") as Robert James Jr., Tony Rock ("The Chris Rock Show") as Dirk Black, Terri J. Vaughn ("The Steve Harvey Show") as Jonelle Abrahams, and James Vincent ("Dude Where's My Car?) as Turtle. ALL OF US is produced by Overbrook Entertainment in association with Warner Bros. Television Production Inc. The executive producers are Will Smith ("Hitch"), Jada Pinkett Smith ("Collateral"), James Lassiter ("Ali") and Betsy Borns ("Friends"). Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith and Betsy Borns are also creators.
GIRLFRIENDS (Monday, 9:00-9:30 PM) returns for its triumphant sixth year, providing an open, honest exploration of the hot-button issues about family, friends, relationships and life facing women today. With fearlessness and sincerity, the show takes on universal issues that appeal to all women and treats them all with tenderness, care and respect. The series stars Tracee Ellis Ross ("Hanging Up") as Joan Clayton, Golden Brooks ("Linc's Place") as Maya Wilkes, Persia White as Lynn Searcy, Jill Marie Jones as Toni Childs, and Reggie Hayes ("Getting Personal") as William Dent. GIRLFRIENDS is a production of Grammnet Productions and Happy Camper Productions in association with Paramount Network Television. Mara Brock Akil ("Moesha," "The Jamie Foxx Show") created the series and serves as executive producer.
HALF & HALF (Monday, 9:30-10:00 PM) enters its fourth season focusing on twenty-something half-sisters Mona and Dee Dee, who had only one thing in common when they met -- their father. Growing up separately, Mona was raised by mom Phyllis to be an independent, free-spirited woman, while Dee Dee grew up privileged in a two-parent home and continues to develop her own identity out of the shadow of her overbearing mother Big Dee Dee. Though once virtual strangers, these two sisters find themselves neighbors in the same San Francisco apartment building, and experiencing the joys and challenges of sisterhood for the first time. The series stars Rachel True ("The Craft") as Mona, Essence Atkins ("Deliver Us from Ava") as Dee Dee, Telma Hopkins ("Family Matters") as Phyllis, Valarie Pettiford ("One Life To Live") as Big Dee Dee, Chico Benymon (R&B group Tra-Knox) as Spencer, and Alec Mapa ("Connie and Carla") as Adam. HALF & HALF is a production of Sister Lee Productions, Inc. in association with Eye Productions Inc. Yvette Lee Bowser ("A Different World," "Living Single" and "For Your Love") is executive producer. Jeffrey Klarik ("Mad About You") created the series.
AMERICA�S NEXT TOP MODEL (Wednesday, 8:00-9:00 PM) is UPN�s hit dramality series that features Tyra Banks and gives real people an opportunity to prove that they can make it in the high-stress, high-stakes world of supermodeling. The series, now in its fifth cycle, follows a group of young women of various backgrounds, shapes and sizes, who live together in one loft and vie for a modeling contract. The dramality exposes the transformation of everyday young women into potentially fierce supermodels, as they face weekly tests that determine who can make the cut. With mentoring by supermodel Tyra Banks and exposure to high-profile fashion-industry gurus, the finalists compete in a highly accelerated modeling boot camp, a crash course to supermodel fame. Participants are asked to demonstrate both inner and outer beauty as they learn to master complicated cat walks, intense physical fitness, fashion photo shoots and perfect publicity skills, all under 24-hour-a-day surveillance of the AMERICA�S NEXT TOP MODEL cameras that chronicle every move. Banks, who created the show, also serves as executive producer along with Ken Mok ("Making the Band") and Anthony Dominici ("The Amazing Race").
VERONICA MARS (Wednesday, 9:00-10:00 PM) returns for a second season to the wealthy, seaside community of Neptune, where the rich and powerful make the rules, own the town and the high school, and desperately try to keep their dirty little secrets just that�secret. Unfortunately for them, there's Veronica Mars, a smart, fearless 18-year-old apprentice private investigator dedicated to solving the town's toughest mysteries. During the day, high school senior Veronica must negotiate the halls of Neptune High like any average teenage girl. By night, Veronica helps with her father Keith's private investigator business, sneaking through back alleys and scoping out no-tell motels with a telescopic-lens camera and her math book in an attempt to uncover the California beach town's darkest secrets. The series stars Kristen Bell ("Deadwood") as Veronica Mars, Enrico Colantoni ("Just Shoot Me") as Keith Mars, Percy Daggs III ("The Guardian") as Wallace Fennel, Teddy Dunn ("The Manchurian Candidate") as Duncan Kane, Jason Dohring ("Judging Amy") as Logan Echolls, and Francis Capra ("C.S.I.: Crime Scene Investigation") as Eli "Weevil" Navarro. VERONICA MARS is a production of Stu Seagall Productions, Inc. and Silver Pictures Television in association with Warner Bros. Television Production, Inc. Joel Silver ("The Matrix") and creator Rob Thomas ("Cupid") are executive producers.
EVE (Thursday, 8:30-9:00 PM), starring Grammy Award-winning Hip Hop sensation Eve, returns for a third season of her eponymous hit series as Shelly, a beautiful and intelligent woman of the new generation trying to navigate love, romance and career. Strong and confident, Shelly brings a fresh attitude to the male/female equation. Her two best friends, Rita, a gorgeous, single former model, and Janie, an attractive woman very happy to be married and out of the dating scene, offer conflicting advice as Shelly tries to find her way on the rocky road to love. Representing the male side of the relationship equation is J.T., a handsome, regular kind of guy who really enjoys being single, and his best pal, Nick, who is looking for that one perfect woman who can meet his very exacting standards. Meanwhile, Donovan, the handsome, fashionable manager of Z Lounge, one of Miami�s hottest clubs, is friends with everyone and inevitably gets stuck in the middle when problems arise. The series stars Eve ("Barbershop") as Shelly Williams, Jason George ("Barbershop," UPN's "Platinum") as J.T. Hunter, Ali Landry ("Spy TV") as Rita Lefleur, Natalie Desselle-Reid ("For Your Love") as Janie Egins, Brian Hooks ("Bulworth") as Nick Delaney, and Sean Maguire ("Off Centre") as Donovan Brink. EVE is a production of The Greenblatt Janollari Studio and Mega-Diva, Inc. in association with Warner Bros. Television Production Inc. Meg DeLoatch (UPN's ONE ON ONE) is the creator, executive producer and writer. Eve, Troy Carter and Dave Duclon are co-executive producers.
CUTS (Thursday, 9:00-9:30 PM), the spin-off of UPN�s hit comedy ONE ON ONE, returns for a second season as former "hairstylist to the rap stars," Kevin Barnes finds himself co-managing his family's former barber shop with the new owner�s spoiled daughter, Tiffany. With differing ideas and opinions, these two partners successfully turn the old shop into a hot, new urban day spa in burgeoning Baltimore. The series stars Shannon Elizabeth ("American Pie") as Tiffany, Marques Houston ("Fat Albert") as Kevin Barnes, Shondrella Avery ("Napoleon Dynamite") as Candy, Rashaan Nall (ONE ON ONE) as Walt, and Edward "Grapevine Fordham, Jr. as Ace. The executive producers are Eunetta T. Boone ("My Wife and Kids", ONE ON ONE) and Bennie R. Richburg, Jr. ("The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air"). The series is produced by Daddy's Girl Productions and Penrose Productions in association with Paramount Network Television.
WWE SMACKDOWN! (Friday, 8:00-10:00 PM) is an action-packed event that delivers all-new, all-spectacular shows and specials every week, year-round on UPN. This unique, bigger-than-life two-hour saga has ratcheted up the drama and intensified the classic rivalries between some of the WWE�s biggest Superstars. Some of the Superstars featured each week include The Undertaker, WWE Champion John Cena, Kurt Angle, Rey Mysterio, Eddie Guerrero and The Big Show, among many others. Meanwhile, the WWE Divas, including Torrie Wilson, Dawn Marie, and Miss Jackie, add their own special combination of glamour, beauty and competition. Together with a recurring cast of unique WWE Superstars, they put on an astonishing display of athleticism combined with riveting dramatic and comedic storylines. WWE SMACKDOWN! has been -- and will continue to be -- appointment viewing for millions of young men and women. The executive producer is Kevin Dunn. Taped before frenzied crowds all over the United States, the series is a production of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc.
Following is the 2005-2006 UPN primetime schedule:
UPN 2005-2006 PRIMETIME SCHEDULE
8:00-8:30 PM ONE ON ONE
8:30-9:00 PM ALL OF US
9:00-9:30 PM GIRLFRIENDS
9:30-10:00 PM HALF & HALF
8:00-9:00 PM AMERICA�S NEXT TOP MODEL (R)
9:00-10:00 PM SEX, LIES & SECRETS (New Series)
8:00-9:00 PM AMERICA�S NEXT TOP MODEL
9:00-10:00 PM VERONICA MARS
8:00-8:30 PM EVERYBODY HATES CHRIS (New Series)
8:30-9:00 PM EVE
9:00-9:30 PM CUTS
9:30-10:00 PM LOVE, INC. (New Series)
8:00-10:00 PM WWE SMACKDOWN!