The annual May avalanche of fall lineup news continues this weekend with word that ABC has cancelled four shows (none too surprisingly) while renewing at least four of its existing series and picking up a handful of new ones.
The news — reported on The Hollywood Reporter Web site (among other places), here and here — comes as network TV executives and stars begin gathering in New York for next week’s annual “upfront” presentations to the advertising community.
The news about all of the networks’ new fall lineups has been leaking out steadily for the last few days.
Today, it’s ABC’s turn with the news that:
The network will not be bringing back: “Pan Am,” “Missing” (starring Ashley Judd), “The River” and “GCB,” the Kristin Chenoweth series that was formerly titled “Good Christian Bitches” and roundly criticized for its portrayal of Christian Texans.
The network is reportedly picking up: “Malibu Country,” a comedy starring Reba McEntire; “Ryan’s Last Resort,” a nuclear sub adventure with Andre Braugher; “666 Park Ave.,” about a New York apartment house with a paranormal personality; “How to Live With Your Parents for the Rest of Your Life,” a comedy with Sarah Chalke, Elizabeth Perkins and Brad Garrett; “Nashville,” a soap starring Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere; “Red Widow,” about a woman crime boss; “Family Tools,” a sitcom about a handyman; “Zero Hour,” a drama about a conspiracist played by Anthony Edwards; and “Neighbors,” about a family that moves into a neighborhood populated by aliens (the outer-space kind, not people from other countries).
The “Upfronts,” as they have come to be known, refer to the process of throwing open the fall advertising sales season in the spring — selling commercial time in advance of the fall season (or “upfront,” as it were), with the prices for ad time based solely on how the networks hope these new shows will perform in the ratings.
Next week’s presentations are: Fox and NBC on Monday, ABC on Tuesday, CBS, TNT and TBS on Wednesday, CW and USA Network on Thursday.