TLC ANNOUNCES A BROAD SLATE OF ORIGINAL PROGRAMMING FOR 2011-12 UPFRONT
(Los Angeles, CA.) Coming off its best 1Q in six years, TLC continues its momentum by unveiling a strong slate of original programming heading into the 2011-2012 Upfront season. With 13 series currently delivering over one million viewers, TLC's primetime ranks among the top 10 ad-supported cable networks among women and continues to engage viewers through powerful storytelling and real-life characters. This year, TLC promises to leverage that success by introducing fresh content, expanding popular genres and building on proven franchises.
"Viewers trust TLC to deliver open-hearted and unfiltered stories of real-life people living extraordinary lives," says Amy Winter, president and general manager, TLC. "And while the unique circumstances attract audiences, it's the surprisingly relatable characters that keep them watching. Our programming connects with viewers and gives them a moment to exhale in today's increasingly crazy and unpredictable world."
With a robust Upfront schedule, TLC is invested in giving viewers and advertisers more of what they love, including more matrimony, more food and more family. The network adds another guest to its popular Friday night line-up with SAY YES TO THE DRESS: BRIDESMAIDS and one of America's favorite wedding experts returns to help brides-to-be in RANDY TO THE RESCUE (wt). Buddy cooks up all-new episodes of CAKE BOSS and returns for round two of NEXT GREAT BAKER. And TLC redefines family programming with HOMECOMING (wt), an emotional new series hosted by Billy Ray Cyrus that reunites soldiers with their loved ones after selflessly serving their country abroad, and I KID, a series where renowned comedian Brad Garrett gets kids to say the darndest things.
The highlights of TLC's 2011-12 upfront schedule include the following:
9/11 COLLIDING LIVES (wt)
COLLIDING LIVES is a story of the fight for survival inside the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. This two-hour special explores the enduring human bonds that were formed between a group of strangers that was caused by the impact of Flight 11 in the North Tower. Combined with in-depth interviews, dramatic recreations, and archival footage, we will relive this tragic event in history and hear the remarkable acts of heroism, compassion and gentleness that followed in its aftermath. (Q2, 2011)
BABY'S FIRST DAY
Painful screams and tears of joy are a common occurrence at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center's Maternity Ward in Nashville, Tennessee. Every day, around the clock, women arrive for the most challenging and overwhelming experience of their lives - childbirth. Whether it's an unmedicated natural delivery or an emergency C-section, each experience is dramatic and unique, and rarely goes according to plan. Told from the mother's point of view, emotions unfold with every heartbeat as this life-changing event is documented. No matter what happens, the excitement and joy of the staff and patients come together in a perfect drama where every moment is indeed a miracle. (Q2, 2011)
BIG FAT GYPSY WEDDING UK (wt)
BIG FAT GYPSY WEDDING UK (wt) paints a visually arresting portrait of the secretive, extravagant and surprising world of gypsies and travellers in Britain today, by following their extraordinary rite-of-passage events - including weddings, communions and christenings. Each stand-alone episode gives insights into the community's attitudes toward gender roles, education and outsiders. The series also explores the remarkable rituals, traditions and beliefs held by this minority group. (Q2, 2011)
In this new series, TLC captures the never before seen world of American Gypsies and travellers. From extravagant weddings to lavish celebrations, each episode will explore their homes, social circles, and provide exclusive insight into their hidden communities. Ancient traditions meet modern culture, as TLC goes behind-the-scenes of this often misunderstood culture. (Q1, 2012)
EXTREME CHRISTMAS TREES (wt)
TLC takes viewers from teeming cities to tiny towns on a tour of the most kookily decorated, tallest, widest, wackiest, gaudiest, and most surprising trees ever created. The "wow factor" of these will blow minds and make jaws drop. (Q4, 2011)
EXTREME COUPONING introduces viewers to America's most extreme "super couponers," sharing why they are so driven by the deals. From seeing their shocking stockpiles of merchandise they rack up, to demonstrating their dramatic shopping skills, to witnessing how some use their amazing couponing ways to benefit local communities, EXTREME COUPONING shares the world of everyday people in pursuit of extraordinary deals. (Q2, 2011)
HOMECOMING (wt) presents a series of surprise military homecomings. Hosted by Billy Ray Cyrus, viewers will watch as soldiers return home to the delight of their loved ones, paying off each personal story with "the" moment so sweet and raw that it cuts through, connecting us as fathers, mothers, husbands, and wives. (Q3, 2011)
I KID WITH BRAD GARRETT
Hosted by Brad Garrett, each 60-minute episode is a combination of field segments and viewer-generated content. Garrett will talk to kids about everything from politics, to religion, to family- life and current events, garnering their candid, funny reactions and answers, with hilarious results. (Q2, 2011)
INVASION OF THE CHRISTMAS LIGHTS 3: EUROPE (wt)
A third dose of the wildest, craziest and most outrageous Christmas light decorations. This installment heads across the pond to showcase the best Europe has to offer Europe has to offer. (Q4, 2011)
Tattoo artist Ami James leaves the warm sunny shores of Miami for the cold hard concrete and steel of New York City. NY INK follows Ami, as he opens a shop in the city where only the best survive. Risking his reputation and finances on a huge new space in Manhattan's ultra cool Soho district, Ami has recruited an elite staff of artists whose personalities are as big as their tattoo skills. Will they be able to join forces and make an indelible mark on the New York tattoo world, or will the stresses of the city be too much for Ami and his team to handle? (Q2, 2011)
NIECY NASH'S WEDDING BASH
The special follows Niecy Nash as she plans her wedding and celebrates her special day with fianc� Jay Tucker. TLC will join the couple as they search for their venue, discover the perfect dress, and ultimately, get married. The entire wedding experience will air as a two-hour television event days after the ceremony. (Q2, 2011)
Located right outside Chicago, businesswomen Minda and Nikki run the only pawn shop that caters to women. This shop specializes in merchandise that caters to real women, including must-haves like jewelry, vintage Barbie dolls, and one-of-a-kind antiques. Each episode reveals what's involved in the pawning business and features Minda and Nikki's struggles to debunk the stereotype that the pawn business is just a man's world. With their two business partners, Greg and Tom, they pawn, purchase and sell anything in order to help their fledgling company stay afloat. Each item that comes through their doors is an opportunity to win big or lose big. (Q2, 2011)
OFF THE REZ
A Native American mother and daughter leave the Reservation to pursue the daughter's dream of earning a scholarship and becoming a basketball star - the very dream her mother, now her hard-driving coach, was denied because of racism. (Q2, 2011)
RANDY TO THE RESCUE
SAY YES TO DRESS breakout star, Randy Fenoli, is throwing the ultimate bridal truck show! On every episode of this splashy new series, Randy will roll into a different city in a tractor-trailer packed to the gills with wedding dresses. Eager brides line up around city blocks for their chance to get advice from the most trusted name in wedding dress retail. Inside the ballroom, Randy will have a team of consultants, working various fitting stations, to help each bride find the perfect dress. The hour-long television show will focus on Randy's work with three particularly interesting brides. Doing much more than helping women find the right dress, he'll design their entire look from "head to hem" as he calls it (dress, hair makeup, bouquet). (2012)
SAY YES TO THE DRESS: BRIDESMAIDS
Lori, of Bridals by Lori, will tell you that brides have an easier time finding a wedding gown than dressing the bridal party. Imagine a mother & mother-in-law, cute little ring girl, and an entourage of bridesmaids looking for one dress that pleases them all. Filmed at Bridals by Lori, each episode of Bridesmaids features three bridal parties; two of them in the middle of shopping for that one-style-fits-all outfit and a third group who comes in for the final fitting. Watch as the bride tries to get her cousin, her sister-in-law and her roommate to agree on what the bridesmaids will wear. (Q3, 2011)
SAY YES TO THE DRESS: RANDY KNOWS BEST
Each half -hour episode features Kleinfeld Bridal's fashion director and star of TLC's hit series SAY YES TO THE DRESS - Randy Fenoli - as he dishes out his top ten tips on a variety of bridal related categories. Whether it's picking out the perfect dress for your body, choosing a dress to complement your venue or theme, or deciding who and what to bring to your bridal appointment, Randy takes on a number of topics as he shares his bridal expertise with viewers. (Q2, 2011)
SPOUSE VS. HOUSE
A new, mischievous makeover and relationship show with a big twist. In each episode, a couple, who is desperate to transform their house into their dream home--but can't afford to do so, are given the cash they need to create their ideal dwelling. But there's a catch: one-half of the couple must move out, leaving their partner to make every design, d�cor, and DIY decision by themselves. (Q2, 2011)
WHO KILLED CHANDRA LEVY?
A docu-movie following the murder of Capitol Hill intern Chandra Levy, the mysterious case that captivated the nation. Airing on the 10-year anniversary of Chandra Levy's disappearance, WHO KILLED CHANDRA LEVY weaves dramatizations with original on-camera interviews to recount the events surrounding Levy's sudden disappearance. Viewers will hear firsthand accounts from those close to the tragic event, including Levy's Aunt Linda Katz, as well as Scott Higham and Sari Horwitz - the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists at the Washington Post who were instrumental in reopening the case. (Q2, 2011)
TLC is a global brand that celebrates extraordinary people and relatable life moments through innovative nonfiction programming. A top 10 cable network for women, TLC has built successful franchises around the Cake Boss, Say Yes to the Dress and Police Women brands. In 2010, 31 series averaged 1.0 million viewers or more including Sister Wives, Kate Plus 8, 19 Kids and Counting, LA Ink, and What Not To Wear.
TLC is available in more than 99 million homes in the US, and more than 50 million households in more than 30 international markets. A destination online, TLC.com offers in-depth fan sites, exclusive video content, and original editorial covering style, home, food, and more. Fans can also interact with TLC via On Demand services, on mobile platforms, including an iPhone App, and through social media such as Facebook or @TLC on Twitter. TLC is part of Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the world's number one nonfiction media company reaching more than 1.5 billion cumulative subscribers in over 180 countries.