UPN Eyes Unscripted Additions, Renews Smackdown


Las Vegas -- Hot on the heels (and well-turned ankles) of America’s Next Top Model, UPN has two more unscripted shows in development, The Player, a comedy about whether a group of singles are as able to play the dating game as they think they can, and a show looking at the Amish coming-of-age ritual, in which young men and women leave their secluded communities to explore the outside world.

In the as-yet-untitled show, five young Amish will move to the big city and live with five kids from the real world.
In other UPN news, the network has renewed WWE Smackdown!  "On the most competitive night of the week, SmackDown! consistently ranks third in our key demos," said Ostroff.
"We're thrilled to continue our successful partnership with the WWE."
While political bosses used to decide who would be President, TV now makes or breaks candidates, said Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC’s Hardball and NBC Enterprises’ The Chris Matthews Show, before an audience of NATPE attendees during the show’s opening keynote.
“Parties don’t pick the candidates anymore,” Matthews said. “The candidates now pick themselves and then the primary voters pick the one they like.”
Matthews traced the evolution of politics from 1952, when party bosses put Dwight Eisenhower in office, to today. The beginning of the TV age in politics, Matthews said, was Richard M. Nixon’s famous Checkers speech, in which Nixon went on television to convince voters he hadn’t accepted financial support from an illegitimate slush fund.
“Nixon was intimate, emotional, resentful, square,” Matthews said. “He was Bill O’Reilly.”
Tribune Entertainment has renewed its weekly hours Mutant X and Gene Roddenberry’s Andromeda for their fourth and fifth seasons, respectively, according to Dick Askin, Tribune’s President and CEO.
Both shows have been cleared in more than 140 markets, including 45 of the top 50 representing more than 85% of the country.
The Sci-Fi Channel also last week picked up Andromeda’s first four seasons and this year’s 22 orginal episodes.