T Dog’s Groovy Grab Bag – The NATPE edition

This version of the Groovy Grab Bag comes to you from the National Association of Television Program Executives convention going on in Las Vegas. Before we start on a barrage of news and notes, let’s talk about the convention itself: things are not going so well.

Attendance at the convention is way down, as station managers and others have decided to stay at home given the way the economy is going. Celebrities are not as viable as they were in years past. Meanwhile, the show with perhaps the biggest shot of succeeding (Sony’s Dr. Oz) isn’t even represented at NATPE since Sony stopped attending the event years ago. Plus, Sony is refusing to make him available to the press. Whose their PR rep, the same people who handle Beyonce? Sony pulled this same stunt in 2004 with its new talk show Life & Style, when none of the stars showed up. And we all know how that show turned out.

There will be a NATPE convention in 2010 in Las Vegas
, but after that, it’s anybody’s guess. The poor attendance this year may not bode well for its future.

Just a few reminders why this convention isn’t what it used to be. Sad, really.

Now on to the news:

– Marie Osmond’s new daytime talk show from Program Partners has been declared a “firm go” after clearing WNBC-TV in New York and KTLA in Los Angeles, clearing the 70 percent threshold it needs to get on the air for fall. No Chicago clearence as of yet, but reports are surfacing that WCIU-TV may land the show.

The program is based taped in Las Vegas, where she and her brother Donny are in a Vegas variety show at the Flamingo Hotel and Casino. Both co-hosted a daytime talk show with each other from 1998-2000 – and of course, a variety show in the 1970’s.

Made in Hollywood, a weekend half-hour entertainment magazine, has been sold to CBS-owned stations in 21 markets, including WBBM-TV here. The series takes a behind-the-scenes look at upcoming Hollywood movies and features interviews with actors, writers, directors, and producers. Also included in the deal is Made in Hollywood: Teen Edition, which covers stations’ E/I requirements. Both shows are distributed by Connection III.

Made in Hollywood currently airs Sundays at 1:30 a.m. on WCIU.

(Editor’s Note: Made in Hollywood and its teen spin-off never moved to WBBM, but wound up on Chicago’s Fox duopoly instead. Go figure. – T.H.)

– Twentieth has announced it has cleared off-network sitcom How I Met Your Mother in broadcast syndication for fall 2010 in 75 percent of the country, including WFLD/WPWR here.

– NBC Universal’s new Deal or No Deal strip recently hit a season-high 2.0 rating, up 5 percent week-to-week. The program is expected to return for season 2.

– TBS has picked up Tyler Perry’s Meet the Browns for 80 more episodes. Perry plans to use the same blueprint he used for House of Payne to take the show into syndication in 2010. Based on the film of the same name, the series has racked up impresive ratings for the cable network so far in its ten-episode test run. TBS plans to premiere the series for a regular run this summer.

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