NBC has announced its new lineup. Here's the list.
8-9 p.m. "Deal or No Deal"
9-10 p.m. "HEROES"
10-11 p.m. "Medium"
8-9 p.m. "FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS"
9-10 p.m. "KIDNAPPED"
10-11 p.m. "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit"
8-9 p.m. "The Biggest Loser"
9-9:30 p.m. "20 GOOD YEARS"
9:30-10 p.m. "30 ROCK"
10-11 p.m. "Law & Order"
8-8:30 p.m. "My Name Is Earl" (new time)
8:30-9 p.m. "The Office" (new time)
9-10 p.m. "STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP"
10-11 p.m. "ER"/("THE BLACK DONNELLYS" in January 2007)
8-9 p.m. "Deal or No Deal"
9-10 p.m. "Las Vegas"
10-11 p.m. "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" (new day and time)
8-9 p.m. "Dateline Saturday"
9-11 p.m. Drama Series Encores
7-8 p.m. "FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA"
8-11 p.m. "SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL"
(Another note from me: ''Crossing Jordan'' and ''Scrubs'' will be back at some point during the season; ''The Apprentice'' will be back in January '07, after football, along with the new reality series, ''America's Got Talent.'') ''E-Ring,'' for those of you who keep asking, is officially kaput, although NBC will burn off some unaired episodes this summer.
And now back to NBC:
2006-07 NEW SERIES DESCRIPTIONS
"STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP" -- Emmy Award-winning executive producer-writer Aaron Sorkin ("The West Wing") and Emmy Award-winning executive producer-director Thomas Schlamme ("The West Wing") return to television with this crackling take on the drama behind the humor of producing a popular, late-night comedy sketch show, "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip." Sorkin lays bare the backstage politics, romances and delicate balance between creative talent, on-air personalities and network executives in an instant text-messaging world. Prominent are Jordan McDeere (Amanda Peet, "Syriana"), a savvy new network entertainment chief who inherits a massive public relations disaster on the series -- even before she starts her first day -- and Matt Albie (Matthew Perry, "Friends") and Danny Tripp (Bradley Whitford, "The West Wing"), a brilliant creative team that she wants to resurrect the program. Also playing crucial roles are the sketch comedy series stars Harriet Hayes (Sarah Paulson, "Down with Love"), Simon Stiles (D.L. Hughley, "The Hughleys") and Tom Jeter (Nathan Corddry, "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart"), their normally cool-headed director, Cal Shanley (Timothy Busfield, "thirtysomething") as well as supreme network honcho Jack Rudolph (Steven Weber, "Wings"). Evan Handler ("Sex and the City") and Carlos Jacott ("Being John Malkovich") also star. The series is a production of Warner Bros. Television.
"FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS" - Expanding on the themes from the hit feature film "Friday Night Lights," this series centers on the small rural town of Dillon, Texas, where the vaunted 2006 state football championship rings are held in the highest regard. The town's promising high school team, its star quarterback, and newly appointed head coach Eric Taylor (Kyle Chandler, "Grey's Anatomy," "King Kong") feel the mounting pressure of the town's pride and honor riding on their shoulders as a new season kicks off. The fresh cast also includes: Scott Porter ("All My Children") as team captain and first-string quarterback Jason Street; Gaius Charles ("The Book of Daniel") as feared running back Brian "Smash" Williams; Taylor Kitsch ("Kyle XY") as running back Tim Riggins; Connie Britton ("The Brothers McMullen," "24") as Taylor's long-suffering wife, Tami; Zach Gilford ("The Last Winter") as third-string quarterback Matt Saracen, and Minka Kelly ("What I Like About You") as Lyla Garrity, Panther cheerleader and Street's girlfriend. Also starring are Aimee Teegarden ("Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide") as Julie Taylor and Adrienne Palicki ("South Beach") as Tyra Collette. The pilot is executive-produced by Brian Grazer ("Fun with Dick and Jane," "Cinderella Man," "A Beautiful Mind"), David Nevins ("Arrested Development"), Peter Berg (the film "Friday Night Lights," "The Run Down") -- who also wrote and the directed the pilot -- and Jason Katims ("Roswell"). "Friday Night Lights" is produced in association with Imagine Entertainment, NBC Universal Television Studio, and Film 44.
"HEROES" -- The epic drama "Heroes" chronicles the lives of ordinary people who discover they possess extraordinary abilities. As a total eclipse casts it shadow across the globe, viewers follow a genetics professor (Sendhil Ramamurthy, "Blind Guy Driving") in India whose father's disappearance leads him to uncover a secret theory -- there are people with super powers living among us. A young dreamer (Milo Ventimiglia, "The Bedford Diaries") tries to convince his politician brother (Adrian Pasdar, "Judging Amy") that he can fly. A high school cheerleader (Hayden Panettiere, "Ice Princess") learns that she is totally indestructible. A Las Vegas stripper (Ali Larter, "Final Destination"), struggling to make ends meet to support her young son (Noah Gray-Cabey, "My Wife & Kids"), uncovers that her mirror image has a secret. A prison inmate (Leonard Roberts, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer") mysteriously finds himself waking up outside of his cell. A gifted artist (Santiago Cabrera, "Empire"), whose drug addiction is destroying his life and the relationship with his girlfriend (Tawny Cypress, "Third Watch"), can paint the future. A down-on-his-luck beat cop (Greg Grunberg, "Alias") can hear people's thoughts, including the secrets of a captured terrorist. In Japan, a young man (Masi Oka, "Scrubs") develops a way to stop time through sheer will power. Their ultimate destiny is nothing less than saving the world. "Heroes" is executive produced by creator/writer Tim Kring ("Crossing Jordan), Dennis Hammer ("Crossing Jordan") and David Semel ("House"), who also directed the pilot. The drama is from NBC Universal Television Studio.
"KIDNAPPED" -- "Kidnapped" is a high-stakes, serialized thriller in which the teenaged son of a wealthy Upper East Side family is kidnapped and everyone is a suspect. The series focuses on the elaborate, triangulated game between the kidnappers, law enforcement, FBI, and the private negotiating team of the "perhaps" less-than-picture-perfect family. The ensemble cast includes Jeremy Sisto ("Six Feet Under"), Delroy Lindo ("The Core"), Emmy winner Dana Delany ("China Beach"), Timothy Hutton ("Kinsey"), Mykelti Williamson ("Boomtown"), Linus Roache ("Batman Begins"), Carmen Ejogo ("Lackawanna Blues"), Will Denton ("Palindromes") and Boris McGiver ("The Pink Panther"). "Kidnapped" is produced by Sony Pictures Television and 25C Productions. David Greenwalt ("Angel"), Jason Smilovic ("Karen Sisco"), Michael Dinner ("Invasion"), Sarah Timberman and Carl Beverly are executive producers; Dinner is the director and Smilovic is the writer.
"THE BLACK DONNELLYS" -- Academy Award winners Paul Haggis and Bobby Moresco ("Crash") are the creators of "The Black Donnellys," a gritty new crime drama series loosely based on Moresco's background. The series follows the exploits of four young, working-class Irish brothers and their involvement in organized crime in New York City. Despite their rough surroundings, the Donnelly brothers basically remain "good kids" -- who will do anything to protect each other against all odds. The ensemble cast includes Jonathan Tucker ("Texas Chainsaw Massacre"), Billy Lush ("Huff"), Thomas Guiry ("Mystic River"), Michael Stahl-David ("Uncle Nino"), Keith Nobbs ("25th Hour"), Olivia Wilde ("The O.C.") and Kirk Acevedo ("Oz"). Haggis, who directed the pilot, and Moresco are the creators, executive producers and co-writers. The series is from NBC Universal Television Studio in association with Blackfriars Bridge Productions.
"RAINES" -- Emmy Award-winning writer-producer Graham Yost ("Band of Brothers," "Boomtown"), acclaimed director-writer-producer Frank Darabont ("The Shawshank Redemption," "Green Mile") and star Jeff Goldblum ("The Lost World: Jurassic Park") combine creative forces in this inventive police drama, which blends traditional noir storytelling with humor and intrigue. Eccentric LAPD detective Michael Raines' unique ability to have detailed conversations with deceased crime victims allows him to re-trace their lives leading up to their murder and helps him to solve their cases. Unfortunately, it also causes increasing friction with his boss, Captain Daniel Lewis (Matt Craven, "From the Earth to the Moon"), fellow officers Remy Boyer (Dov Davidoff, "Third Watch") and Sally Lance (Linda Park, "Star Trek: Enterprise"), as well as civilian employee Carolyn (Nicole Sullivan, "MADtv"). Aided by Charlie (Luis Guzman, "Boogie Nights"), his ex-LAPD partner and conscience, Raines struggles to accept his peculiar gift -- or burden -- as it often forces him at times to confront his own past and internal demons. "Raines" is from NBC Universal Television Studio.
"20 GOOD YEARS" -- This high-energy comedy follows two New Yorkers who have finally realized that life doesn't last forever. Mismatched buddies John Mason (Emmy Award winner John Lithgow, "3rd Rock from the Sun"), an impulsive, thrice-divorced surgeon who has been forced into retirement -- and Jeffrey Pyne (Jeffrey Tambor, "Arrested Development"), a widower judge who agonizes over every situation -- are polar opposites in every way. The one thing the duo can agree on is that they only have about 20 good years left and both men vow to live each day as if it were their last -- with no regrets. "20 Good Years" also stars Heather Burns ("Bewitched") as John's pregnant daughter Stella, and Jake Sandvig ("The Story of Us") as Hugh, Jeffrey's un-motivated son. The executive producers are Tom Werner ("Roseanne"), Eric Gold (the upcoming "Outsourced") Jimmy Miller ("Kicking & Screaming") and Marsh McCall ("Modern Men"). Marsh McCall and Michael Leeson ("The Cosby Show") are the writers; Terry Hughes ("Friends") directed the pilot. "20 Good Years" is produced by Warner Bros.Television.
"30 ROCK" -- Emmy Award winner Tina Fey (NBC's "Saturday Night Live," "Mean Girls") writes, executive-produces and stars in this workplace comedy that takes viewers behind the scenes of a frenetic television variety show. Single Liz Lemon (Fey) is living every comedy writer's dream. She's head writer on a demanding, live TV program in New York City whose life is jolted when a brash new network president (Alec Baldwin, "The Aviator," "The Cooler") interferes with her show and bullies Liz into convincing Tracy Jordan (Tracy Morgan, "Saturday Night Live," "The Longest Yard"), a wild and unpredictable movie star, to join the cast. Now Liz must manage the unmanageable so that the show -- and her dream -- can go on. Also starring are Rachel Dratch ("Saturday Night Live") as Jenne DeCarlo, Scott Adsit ("Kicking and Screaming") as Pete Hornberger and Jack MacBrayer ("Arrested Development") as Kenneth. "30 Rock" is executive-produced by Lorne Michaels, Fey, JoAnn Alfano, Marci Klein and David Miner, and is produced by Broadway Video Television and NBC Universal Television Studio.
"ANDY BARKER, P.I." -- Andy Richter ("Late Night with Conan O'Brien") re-teams with co-writer and executive producer Conan O'Brien in this comedy as he portrays Andy Barker, an earnest, hard-working CPA who has succeeded at everything -- that is until his new accounting business fails to take off. But when he's mistaken for Lew Staziak (Harve Presnell, "Fargo") -- the retired private detective who used to occupy his office -- Andy embraces the twist of fate and takes the case. Andy's incessantly supportive wife Jen (Amy Farrington, "The New Adventures of Old Christine") isn't sold on this risky new venture, that is, until she notices a sudden boost in Andy's self-confidence. Andy's neighboring merchants -- Simon (Tony Hale, "Arrested Development"), Wally (Marshall Manesh, "Will & Grace") and Jessica (Ion Overman, "The L Word") join him in the dicey investigation. Whether chiding thugs for "renting instead of buying" or being pursued by Sri Lankan gangsters, Andy will prove to be a consummate problem-solver. This comedy series is written by "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" host O'Brien and former head writer Jonathan Groff ("Ed"), who executive-produce the series with "Late Night" executive producer Jeff Ross and David Kissinger. "Andy Barker, P.I." is from NBC Universal Television Studio and Conaco. The pilot was directed by Jason Ensler ("The West Wing").
"THE SINGLES TABLE" - In this comedy, a group of witty and single strangers -- Ivan (John Cho, "Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle"), Eli (Conor Dubin, "Close to Home"), Adam (Jarrad Paul, "The Shaggy Dog") and Stephanie (Rhea Seehorn, "Modern Men") - meet at a wedding and suddenly realize they have one thing in common, they are each a party of one stuck at a remote singles table. Because of their solo status and tenuous relationships with the bride and groom, they are all destined for Table 18, a far corner of the wedding reception. But through the course of the party, each emotionally vulnerable person questions his or her life's issues and vows to make it better. For richer or poorer, these five kindred spirits will grow to become good friends -- and, in some cases, they may become more than that. Written by Bill Martin ("Grounded for Life," "3rd Rock from the Sun") and Mike Schiff ("Grounded for Life," "3rd Rock from the Sun"), "The Singles Table" is from 20th Century Fox Television. Adam Bernstein ("The Bedford Diaries," "Scrubs") is the director.