[09/12/05 - 12:00 AM]
I Pity the Fool Who Doesn't Watch TV LanD...

[via press release from TV Land]

"I Pity The Fool" Who Doesn�t Watch TV Land�

Network Strikes Deal With Lions Gate Television For Reality Pilot Starring Mr. T

New York, NY, September 12, 2005 � TV Land today announced a deal with Lions Gate Television to produce a reality TV pilot starring the one and only Mr. T, entitled I Pity The Fool (working title). The pilot is expected to begin production in October and features Mr. T in the unlikely role of social scientist as he dishes out advice in classic �T� style to fans in need.

I Pity The Fool blends the conventions of a makeover show with fish-out-of-water conflict, resulting in a humorous twist on the format. Starring Mr. T in the role of motivational guru, the program focuses on specific concepts associated with personal or professional success, such as teamwork or determination. Those themes will be illustrated by hilarious anecdotes from Mr. T�s own life, followed by real world situations in which he becomes the catalyst for change.

�We are very excited to work with Mr. T and Lions Gate on I Pity The Fool,� states Sal Maniaci, Vice President of Development and Production, TV Land and Nick at Nite. �By putting Mr. T in an unfamiliar environment, viewers will have the experience of seeing him back up his famous words and attitude with concrete actions. Exposing our viewers to celebrated personalities that they love in formats that are new and unique is exactly the kind of original programming that TV Land is creating.�

�We believe Mr. T�s larger-than-life personality, disarming style and unique perspective on life will be a breath of fresh air in reality television,� said Kevin Beggs, president, programming and production, Lions Gate Television. �TV Land has shared our enthusiasm about this project from the beginning and we�re delighted to be in business with the network.�

I Pity The Fool is produced by Lions Gate Television in association with Left/Right Films and Remag Guerilla. Stephen Belafonte (Thank You for Smoking, Never Die Alone, Prison Ball), Ken Druckerman (Growing Up Gotti), and Banks Tarver (Growing Up Gotti) are executive producers.

The deal for Mr. T was brokered by The Buchwald Agency.

Lions Gate Television is the television production and distribution arm of Lions Gate Entertainment (NYSE: LGF). With a total of five series currently on the air, the company is continuing its strategy of being an important supplier of content to cable and broadcast networks. Lions Gate Entertainment is the premier independent producer and distributor of motion pictures, television programming, home entertainment, family entertainment and video-on-demand content. Its prestigious and prolific library is a valuable source of stable and recurring revenue and serves as a foundation for the continued growth of the Company�s core businesses. The Lions Gate brand name is synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world.

TV Land and Nick at Nite and all related logos and titles are trademarks of Viacom International, Inc.

Now seen in over 85 million U.S. homes and throughout Canada, TV Land presents popular dramas, sitcoms, westerns, Retromercials and original programming, all packaged in a unique, award-winning on-air environment. The network celebrates all things Classic TV with a specific viewer in mind: the first generation of people to grow up watching television. Known for its celebrated line-up of Classic TV ranging from I Love Lucy to Little House on the Prairie, TV Land has made its mark with clever, critically-acclaimed original programming, developed by TV Land Productions, which was created in 2003. Original programming includes such hits as the annual TV Land Awards: A Celebration of Classic TV; an original special that reunited the cast of The Brady Bunch in 2004's Emmy-nominated Still Brady: After All These Years; Chasing Farrah, which follows the real-life happenings of iconic actress and sex symbol, Farrah Fawcett; as well as several other series and specials that enhance the overall Classic TV viewing experience. For more information about TV Land's originals, visit www.tvland.com.

MTV Networks, a division of Viacom International Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), owns and operates the following television programming services -- MTV: MUSIC TELEVISION, MTV2, mtvU, VHI, NICKELODEON, NICK at NITE, COMEDY CENTRAL, TV LAND, SPIKE TV, CMT, NOGGIN, MTV INTERNATIONAL and THE DIGITAL SUITE FROM MTV NETWORKS, a package of 12 digital services, all of which are trademarks of MTV Networks. MTV Networks also has licensing agreements, joint ventures, and syndication deals whereby all of its programming services can be seen worldwide.

  [september 2005]  


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