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Channel Surfing: FOX to Exhibit "Glee" This Spring, Espenson Defends "Dollhouse," Pink Slips at CBS Par,

Welcome to your Tuesday morning television briefing from another spectacularly grey morning in Los Angeles. I'm still recovering from last night's excesses, which included drinks in West Hollywood with not one but two writers/co-executive producers from Battlestar Galactica, followed by more drinks and dinner with a friend in Culver City. Whew.

FOX has ordered 13 episodes of one-hour comedy Glee, from co-writer/director/executive producer Ryan Murphy (Nip/Tuck) and 20th Century Fox Television, and hopes to launch the series as early as this spring. "Like anything Ryan does, it's got creative ambition," said Fox Entertainment president Kevin Reilly. "I saw the same look in his eyes that I saw when he pitched Nip/Tuck (at FX). It takes some tonal chances, and should generate a tremendous amount of buzz and interest." Series follows the pitfalls and travails of a Spanish teacher (Matthew Morrison) who attempts to reinvigorate the sagging high school glee club. (Variety)

Elsewhere at FOX, criticisms and bad buzz about midseason drama Dollhouse have prompted writer/producer Jane Espenson, currently writing the series' 11th episode script, to defend the series, saying that it's turning out just fine. "It's really good," said Espenson. "I think it could very well appeal to not just Whedonites, but a much broader audience. I think it's extremely good, and the concept just blows me away: It's fantastic, this notion of people who have been erased and are now imprintable with whatever you want them to be. ... It's sci-fi of the most human kind. It's sci-fi about people, as opposed to, you know, phenomena. And I really love that." (Sci Fi Wire)

BBC America has announced that it has acquired two seasons of Life on Mars sequel Ashes to Ashes and will run them back-to-back starting in March 2009. (Televisionary)

Laurence Fishburne has signed a first-look deal with CBS Paramount Network Television to develop projects for television. Under the deal, Fishburne--who recently joined the cast of CBS' CSI: Crime Scene Investigation--will have offices based on the CBS Radford lot in Studio City; he's tapped former Paramount TV exec Rose Catherine Pinkney to oversee the TV arm of his Cinema Gypsy Prods. (Variety)

Fox Reality has handed out a series order to Househusbands of Hollywood, a nine-episode series following the lives of stay-at-home husbands of successful Los Angeles women that is set to launch in August 2009. (Hollywood Reporter)

CBS initiated a round of layoffs yesterday at CBS Entertainment and CBS Paramount Network Television, including EVP Maria Crenna of CBS Paramount and comedy SVP Brian Banks, who have been with the studio for 11 years. Total number of pinkslips is said to be in the low double digits. (Variety)

Brittany Robertson (Swingtown) has been cast as the lead in the CW's dramedy pilot Light Years, about a 15-year-old girl who, after growing up in a series of foster homes, attempts to track down her birth parents who gave her up for adoption after a one-night stand and connects with her mother, now a morning radio show host, and her father, a childish bar owner. Gary Fleder will direct the pilot, from CBS Paramount Network Television and writer/executive producer Liz Tigelaar. (Hollywood Reporter)

Jack Black will guest star on the post-Super Bowl episode of NBC's The Office. (Televisionary)

Bravo has renewed docusoap The Real Housewives of Atlanta for a second season. (Variety)

Russell Hornsby (Lincoln Heights) will star in Season Two of HBO's In Treatment; he'll play Luke,
a separated father with a 12-year-old son who is one of Paul Weston's patients. (Hollywood Reporter)

Stay tuned.

Comments

Anonymous said…
RE: Dollhouse - It's sad that this show's fate has pretty much been sealed before it even hits the airwaves. I love Joss' work (and Jane's!) but, sadly, I don't think Dollhouse will be long for this world. The pilot is just too messy and even if the subsequent episodes get better I think it will be too little too late.
Anonymous said…
RE: Jack Black on The Office - AWESOME!
Anonymous said…
Hope Dollhouse turns out OK. The concept sure sounds intriguing.

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