TNT Makes Original-Programming Push

Turner Broadcasting System-Owned Cable Network Adds Unscripted Fare

TNT pulled the curtain on its development slate and announced a dramatic increase in the production of original programming.

The network said it has 14 shows in development, with the goal of making most of its weekday primetime programming originals by 2010.

In a shift, the network is adding unscripted programming to its lineup. TNT has been branded as a channel for “drama,” while sister network TBS has been branded as the channel for “comedy.”

"This dramatic expansion of our original-programming slate is an important and exciting step in the evolution of our network," said Michael Wright, senior vice president in charge of the content-creation group for TNT, in a statement. "We've had great results with our early efforts because of the amazingly talented people who have been bringing their best work to us. We look forward to continuing that success. We're especially excited to add unscripted series to our lineup, which opens a whole new world of story-telling opportunities."

The network ordered full seasons of two new shows: Raising the Bar. from producer Steven Bochco, which follows friends from law school who find themselves on opposite ends of the courtroom; and Leverage, which follows a former insurance investigator who becomes a modern day Robin Hood by going after the rich and greedy.

TNT also detailed other scripted shows in development:

Truth in Advertising, from the same team that created TNT hit The Closer, chronicles the goings-on at a Chicago ad agency following the death of one of its executives.

Generations will travel back and forth in time to examine the lives of three generations of the same family, who have lived in the same house.

The Genie Chronicles follows a reporter who discovers a lamp with a genie inside and the people using the lamp to make wishes.

Technophobia takes a grim look at an American town where technology has advanced at a frightening pace.

• An untitled project from Angelo Pizzo will take place in the 1950s in a small town in Indiana.

• Another untitled project will be based on author Tess Gerritson’s crime novels.

The network also detailed unscripted shows currently in development:

Wedding Day, from venerable reality TV producer Mark Burnett, will focus on one bride from across the country each week as her and her family plan a wedding, culminating in the wedding itself.

The Greatest Show on Earth will take place on board the mile-long train that transports Ringing Bros. and Barnum Bailey Circus from town to town.

Lean on Me will profile mentors of famous people.

Crimes of the Century will examine the most famous or interesting crimes of the past 100 years.

Shadow of a Doubt presents tales of true crime.

Behind the Drama, from Behind the Music producer Gary Rosenthal, is a series of one-hour documentaries looking at the untold stories of some of the most famous movies and films.