NBC MAKES IT OFFICIAL AS EMMY-WINNING "WILL & GRACE" WILL CONCLUDE EIGHT-YEAR SERIES RUN WITH MEMORABLE FINALE ON MAY 18 WITH ONE-HOUR RETROSPECTIVE AND HOUR-LONG FINAL EPISODE
BURBANK, Calif. -- January 22, 2006 -- NBC's groundbreaking, Emmy Award-winning "Will & Grace" (Thursdays, 8-8:30 p.m. ET) will officially conclude its eight-year run on Thursday, May 18 with an hour-long series retrospective (8-9 p.m. ET) followed by a one-hour series finale (9-10 p.m. ET), it was announced today by Kevin Reilly, President, NBC Entertainment.
"It is a bittersweet moment for all of us at NBC to confirm that this will be the final season of the comedy 'Will & Grace", said Reilly. "For seven years the show assembled one of the finest comedic casts on television, bringing to life the hilarious, groundbreaking scripts from Mutchnick, Kohan and their writing team to create what has truly become one of the classic comedies on television."
The comedy series has been averaging a 4.0 rating, 11 share among adults 18-49 and 8.8 million viewers overall in the first two weeks since its January 5 switch to the 8 p.m. half-hour on Thursdays nights. In those two weeks, "Will & Grace" has lifted NBC 38 percent above its 18-49 season average in the time period (with a 4.0 rating vs. a 2.9). On January 12, the second "Will & Grace" live episode of the season generated NBC's highest 18-49 rating in the time period since Feb. 10, 2005.
"Will & Grace" is also primetime's most upscale half-hour comedy in the show's concentration of homes with $100,000-plus incomes in its 18-49 audience.
To date, "Will & Grace" has been nominated for 73 Emmys, 27 Golden Globes, 19 Screen Actors Guild Awards and 12 People's Choice Awards. Among its 14 Emmy wins, the series won for Outstanding Comedy Series in 2000. In 2002 and 2003, it had more Emmy nominations than any other comedy series. Plus, in 2005 "Will & Grace" was tied as one of the most-nominated series and also scored its highest number of Emmy nominations in a single year with 15.
"Will & Grace" has also won eight GLAAD Media Awards, two TV Guide Awards, and one Directors Guild Award. Additionally, the show has been nominated for six American Comedy Awards, seven Television Critics Association Awards, and five Producers Guild Awards.
James Burrows, one of the series' executive producers, was nominated earlier this month for a Directors Guild Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy for the episode "Alive and Schticking."
Starring Eric McCormack, Debra Messing, Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally, the show continues to focus on the bizarre but abiding friendships between four Manhattan friends -- Will Truman (McCormack), Grace Adler (Messing), Jack McFarland (Hayes) and Karen Walker (Mullally).
Emmy winners David Kohan and Max Mutchnick are the creators and executive producers. Gary Janetti, Tracy Poust, Jon Kinnally, and Tim Kaiser serve as executive producers and showrunners. Multi-Emmy winner Burrows (NBC's "Frasier," "Friends") is director and executive producer. "Will & Grace" is a production of KoMut Entertainment in association with NBC Universal Studios and Three Sisters Entertainment.