Sorry, What to Watch took a turkey day break as last week was really light on new product worth mentioning. This week? Pretty much the same but we don’t want you to miss us too badly. Here’s five recent Blu-ray, DVD, and streaming releases that may have caught your attention on new release shelves lately, ranked in the order we’d add them to our holiday wish list.
ABC Renews ‘Castle,’ ‘Scrubs’; Cancels ‘The Unusuals,’ ‘Cupid’
CHICAGO – ABC is still struggling to find the next big hit to stand next to monsters like “Lost,” “Desperate Housewives,” and “Grey’s Anatomy,” and they decided to give Nathan Fillion & Stana Katic’s “Castle” a shot at hit status, but cancelled several other new shows, including “The Unusuals” and “Cupid”.
ABC announced their fall schedule today and made a few surprise choices, bringing back the increasingly interesting “Castle” and giving another chance to “Better Off Ted” and “True Beauty”.
Perhaps the most surprising move, especially considering the show’s poignant and excellent series finale, has to be the return of “Scrubs,” which will be back for midseason. They also announced 11 new series for fall and midseason.
Photo credit: ABC
Previously announced returning shows include “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” “The Bachelor,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Dancing With the Stars,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Lost,” “Private Practice,” “Supernanny,” “Ugly Betty,” “Wife Swap,” and “20/20”.
Not on the fall schedule? “Surviving Suburbia,” “The Unusuals,” “Cupid,” “Pushing Daisies,” or “Samantha Who?”
Stephen McPherson, president, ABC Entertainment group said today, “Our focus is always on delivering the best stories with the most memorable characters on TV, whether that’s established audience favorites or innovative new shows. This year we’ve got the best of both. We’re headed into the season with a strong slate of returning series as well as great new shows from one of our best development seasons ever.”
Premiere dates will be announced later but “Dancing With the Stars” and “Castle” will still start the week on Mondays.
The results show for “Dancing With the Stars” will be the meat in the middle of the new show sandwich on Tuesday nights with “Shark Tank” and “The Forgotten”.
Photo credit: ABC
Wednesday nights will feature five new shows, a risky move for the network - “Hank,” “The Middle,” “Modern Family,” “Cougar Town,” and “Eastwick”.
Thursday nights is still anchored by “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Private Practice” with “Flash Forward” providing the new show lead-in to start the night.
Fridays consist of “Supernanny,” the relocated “Ugly Betty,” and “20/20” with “Saturday Night College Football” the next night.
Sundays remain unchanged with “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” “Desperate Housewives,” and “Brothers & Sisters”.
Fall show descriptions courtesy of ABC:
Three very different women find themselves drawn together by a mysterious man who unleashes unique powers in each of them, and this small New England town will never be the same. The series is based on the popular movie “The Witches of Eastwick” and on the novel of the same title by John Updike.
“Eastwick” stars Rebecca Romijn as Roxie Torcoletti, Lindsay Price as Joanna Frankel, Jamie Ray Newman as Kat Gardener, Paul Gross as Darryl Van Horne, Sara Rue as Penny, Veronica Cartwright as Bun, Johann Urb as Will, Jon Bernthal as Raymond and Ashley Benson as Mia.
The series is produced by Warner Bros. Television. Maggie Friedman is executive producer/writer. The pilot was directed by David Nutter.
When a mysterious event causes the entire world to black out, humanity is given a glimpse into its near future, and every man, woman and child is forced to come to grips with whether their destinies can be avoided or fulfilled.
Adapting award-winning author Robert J. Sawyer’s revolutionary novel, executive producers David S. Goyer (visionary co-writer of “Batman Begins” and “The Dark Knight”) and Brannon Braga (“24,” “Star Trek: Enterprise”) invite you to embark on a journey to answer the question, “if you knew what your future held, what would you do?”
“Flash Forward” stars Joseph Fiennes as Mark Benford, John Cho as Demetri Noh, Jack Davenport as Lloyd Simcoe, Sonya Walger as Olivia Benford, Courtney B. Vance as Stan Wedeck, Brian O’Byrne as Aaron Stark, Christine Woods as Janis Hawk, Zachary Knighton as Bryce Varley and Peyton List as Nicole.
The series is from ABC Studios. David S. Goyer is executive producer/writer/director. Brannon Braga is executive producer and co-wrote the pilot. Other executive producers are Marc Guggenheim, Jessika Goyer, Vince Gerardis and Ralph Vicinanza. Guggenheim will be the showrunner, along with Goyer.
From executive producer Jerry Bruckheimer comes a crime show in which a team of dedicated amateurs work on cases involving unidentified victims. After the police have given up, this group must first solve the puzzle of the victim’s identity in order to then help catch the killer. They work to give the deceased back their names, lest they become — The Forgotten.
“The Forgotten” stars Rupert Penry-Jones as Alex, Reiko Aylesworth as Linda, Michelle Borth as Candace, Bob Stephenson as Walter, Anthony Carrigan as Tyler and Rochelle Aytes as Detective Grace Russell.
The series is produced by Bonanza Productions Inc. in association with Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Warner Bros. Television. Mark Friedman is executive producer/writer, Jerry Bruckheimer and Jonathan Littman are executive producers, KristieAnne Reed is co-executive producer and Danny Cannon is executive producer/director.
Courteney Cox stars as a recently divorced single mother exploring the honest truths about dating and aging in our beauty and youth obsessed culture.
“Cougar Town” stars Courteney Cox as Jules, Christa Miller as Elle, Busy Philipps as Laurie, Dan Byrd as Travis, Brian Van Holt as Bobby, Josh Hopkins as Grayson and Ian Gomez as Andy.
The series is from ABC Studios. Bill Lawrence is executive producer/writer/director, Kevin Biegel is writer/co-executive producer, and Courteney Cox and David Arquette are executive producers.
Photo credit: ABC
Kelsey Grammer stars in this timely comedy as Hank Pryor, a titan of industry who suddenly finds himself out of work, almost out of money and around a wife and kids for whom he’s never made much time. Despite his recent setbacks, however, Hank is confident he’s on the road back to the top. He knows he is destined to return to greatness. And he is — just not the greatness he imagines.
“Hank” stars Kelsey Grammer as Hank, Melinda McGraw as Tilly, David Koechner as Grady, Macey Cruthird as Maddie and Ryan Wynott as Henry.
The series is produced by Bonanza Productions Inc. in association with McMonkey Inc., Grammnet Productions, Werner Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television. It is written by Tucker Cawley. Tom Werner, Tucker Cawley, Kelsey Grammer and Mike Clements serve as executive producers. The pilot was directed by James Burrows.
The Hecks are a middle class family living in the middle of Indiana, just trying to keep their heads above water. Emmy-winner Patricia Heaton stars as a wife and mother of three in a comedy about raising a family and lowering your expectations.
“The Middle” stars Patricia Heaton as Frankie, Neil Flynn as Mike, Eden Sher as Sue, Atticus Shaffer as Brick and Charlie McDermott as Axel.
The series is produced by Warner Bros. Television. Eileen Heisler and DeAnn Heline are executive producers/writers and Werner Walian is producer. The pilot was directed by Julie Anne Robinson.
Photo credit: ABC
Today’s American families come in all shapes and sizes. Shot from the perspective of an unseen documentary filmmaker, this comedy takes a modern look at the complications that come with being a family in 2009.
“Modern Family” stars Ed O’Neill as Jay, Sofía Vergara as Gloria, Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell, Eric Stonestreet as Cameron, Ty Burrell as Phil, Julie Bowen as Claire, Sarah Hyland as Haley, Rico Rodriguez as Manny, Nolan Gould as Luke and Ariel Winter as Alex.
The series is produced by Twentieth Century Fox Television. Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd are executive producers. The pilot was directed by Jason Winer.
From Mark Burnett, executive producer of “Survivor” and “The Apprentice,” and Sony Pictures Television comes “Shark Tank,” an exciting new reality show that gives budding entrepreneurs the chance to make their dreams come true and become successful – and possibly wealthy – business people. But the entrepreneurs must first try to convince five tough, multi-millionaire tycoons to part with their own hard-earned cash and give them the funding they need to jumpstart their ideas.
In these trying economic times, it’s difficult for an individual possessing a dream or even a working small business poised for growth to get a loan for a risky venture. Whether it be an imaginative enhancement for an existing product, a family recipe that has all the ingredients to become a profitable culinary treat, or the latest technological gadget that could take the world by storm, most of these dreams die an early death because no one dared take a financial chance on someone with an unproven and oftentimes outrageous proposal. Many of these people now see “Shark Tank” as their last chance at success. Some have been laboring on their ideas for years or even decades, have invested large amounts of money, and are being pressured to throw in the towel by friends and family. Others have simply never had access to the means to live out their dreams, until now.
Enter the Sharks of “Shark Tank” – Barbara Corcoran (Manhattan real estate titan), Kevin Harrington (king of infomercials), Robert Herjavec (technology tycoon), Daymond John (fashion mogul) and Kevin O’Leary (venture capitalist) – five multi-millionaires who lifted themselves up by their bootstraps to make their own entrepreneurial dreams come true and turned their ideas into empires.
Each week ambitious entrepreneurs from across the country will present their breakthrough business concepts, products, properties and services to the panel of ruthless investors. Their goal is to convince these merciless moguls to invest their own dollars in the concept. Convincing real-life millionaires to part with their own money is no easy task, because when the idea is poor, the Sharks will tear into the ill-prepared presenters and pass on the idea with a simple, “I’m out!” — sending them running for the exit.
But these Sharks aren’t just out for blood, they too have a goal: to own a piece of the next big idea. Entrepreneurs will be asked to give up a percentage of their companies’ equity to the Sharks in order to get the investment they need. But when the Sharks hear a really top-notch idea, and more than one of them wants to sink their teeth into it, a war between them will erupt. Then the once-desperate entrepreneur can rejoice when the Sharks reveal their true interest in the product and bid up the price of the investment.