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NBC unveils four new series

Fri., May 14, 2010

NBC has announced four more new series for its fall schedule.

The list includes:

•“Chase,” a drama about a team of U.S. marshals hunting down America’s most dangerous fugitives. The action series comes from prolific producer Jerry Bruckheimer (“CSI,” “The Amazing Race,” “Pirates of the Caribbean”).

•“The Event,” a conspiracy thriller starring Jason Ritter (“The Class”) as an everyman who investigates the mysterious disappearance of his fiancee and unwittingly begins to expose the biggest cover-up in U.S. history. Blair Underwood plays the newly elected U.S. president and Laura Innes (“ER”) is the leader of a mysterious group of detainees.

•“Outsourced,” a single-camera comedy centering on an all-American company that sells whoopee cushions, foam fingers and wallets made of bacon – and whose call center has suddenly been outsourced to India.

•“Love Bites,” a romantic comedy created by Cindy Chupack (“Sex and the City”), starring Becki Newton (“Ugly Betty”) and Jordana Spiro (“My Boys”). The anthology series features three loosely connected stories of love, sex, marriage and dating.

They join the previously announced “Undercovers,” about a married pair of CIA spies who come out of retirement to track down a fellow agent who goes missing.

The official announcement date for NBC’s full fall lineup is Monday. That kicks off the so-called Upfront Week, when all the major broadcast networks unveil next season’s schedules to advertisers.

Before Spartacus

A prequel to the Starz channel’s hit series “Spartacus: Blood and Sand” is in the works.

Co-stars Lucy Lawless and John Hannah will take center stage for the six-episode miniseries leading up to Spartacus’ arrival as a captured Thracian slave.

The still-untitled series is scheduled to start airing next January. Shooting begins in New Zealand this summer.

Sayonara, Sarah

“The Sarah Silverman Program,” which recently ended its third outrageous season on Comedy Central, won’t be back for a fourth.

Inspired by Silverman’s persona as a stand-up comic, the scripted show featured her as a flighty, self-consumed slacker who, among other things, got drunk on cough syrup, mocked the abortion rights debate and seduced none other than God.

Audience erosion was deemed the main reason for the cancellation.

Oprah, Alan

Oprah Winfrey is joining with Alan Ball to produce an HBO film based on the nonfiction best-seller “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.”

Written by Rebecca Skloot, “The Immortal Life” tells the true story of Lacks, a poor black woman who died of cervical cancer in 1951. Without her consent, pieces of the tumor that killed her were removed and used for medical exploration.

Burns meets Bonds

Filmmaker Ken Burns is wading into baseball’s steroids era for a postscript to his 1994 PBS documentary about the sport.

“The Tenth Inning,” a four-hour documentary, will air Sept. 28 and 29, just before playoffs begin. It covers the rise in performance-enhancing drugs, the influx of Latino and Asian players, a new Yankees dynasty and the breakthrough of the Boston Red Sox.


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