Networks announce fall lineups

Just as this television season winds down, network executives for CBS, NBC and ABC announced earlier this week the changes in their fall line-ups.

ABC will introduce 15 new series, hoping to bank on the star talents of Calista Flockhart (”Ally McBeal”) and Rachel Griffiths (”Six Feet Under”) for the drama “Brothers & Sisters,” and Ted Danson (”Cheers”) for the comedy “Help Me Help You.”

But the biggest change for ABC will be the moving of their hottest show “Grey’s Anatomy.” The show moves from the big night with “Desperate Housewives” and “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” on Sunday to Thursday nights with three brand new series.

ABC will also be leaning on the shoulder of J.J. Abrams who has brought the hit shows “Lost” and “Alias” to the network. He has created a new show for them called “Six Degrees,” a drama about six different New Yorkers who, according to the network’s media release, “go about their lives without realizing the impact they’re having on one another. A mysterious web of coincidences will gradually draw these strangers closer.”

This show will hold a time slot on Thursday, airing after “Grey’s.”

The move of “Grey’s” to Thursday nights puts the show up against CBS’s highest rated show “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.”

As it stands now, Nielsen Media Research’s latest ratings trackers have “CSI” beating “Grey’s” by approximately 5 million viewers. Lately, “Grey’s” has been ABC’s highest rated show.

CBS, the one major network that has been consistent in the ratings, holding five of the top-10 rated shows, isn’t making major changes. Executives announced that they are only introducing four new programs.

According to the network’s media release, the new show will feature a roster of award-winning actors and executive producers and a unique mix of concepts and genres.

Two of the freshman series include an ensemble comedy, “The Class,” from “Friends” co-creator David Crane and “Smith,” a high-octane heist thriller from “ER’s” John Wells starring Ray Liotta (“Goodfellas”) and Virginia Madsen (“Sideways”).

The floundering network, NBC, which is slated to finish fourth in the ratings race this year, will be introducing 10 new shows this fall, banking on a new comedy by Aaron Sorkin (“The West Wing”).

Sorkin’s show “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip,” is an insider’s take on the backstage drama of a late-night comedy sketch show, with an all-star cast that includes Matthew Perry (“Friends”), Amanda Peet (“Syriana”) and Bradley Whitford (“The West Wing”).

Also new to fall are the dramas “Friday Night Lights,” inspired by the film that conveys the passion and sky-high expectations of a small Texas town for its top-ranked football team, starring Kyle Chandler (“King Kong”).

• Lanaly Cabalo, lifestyle writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 237) or


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