PILOT BUZZ: Countdown for 2012-13 Primetime Schedule


With just 2 1/2 weeks to go before the NETWORKS announce NEW SCHEDULES for 2012-2013 Primetime at the New York UPFRONTS, industry insiders are waging their bets.  This year it’s all about Soaps, Fish-out-of-Water-Starting-Over Themes, Workplace Comedies, Dysfunctional Families, Medical Settings, Cults, Westerns, Whatever… Now’s the time when Actors, Agents, Managers and Producers tune into the latest Gossip and Google News.

Wishing, Hoping and Watching —

Everyone has his/her own agenda, obvi – so you can’t really know if what you read and hear is accurate. Plus some pilots are just wrapping up now, so the jury’s still out. But, if history serves us right, some of the frontrunners will likely be on the new schedule. And sources like Nellie Andreeva at Deadline Hollywood do have a pretty good sense of what’s happening at this point, so I tend to pay attention to PRIMETIME PILOT PANIC: Early Buzz and PRIMETIME PILOT PANIC: Early Buzz Update.


Drama contenders that keep showing up on all of the lists:  NBC’s  COUNTY (I’d love any project that includes Jason Katims and Jason Ritter); FOX’S KEVIN WILLIAMSON project with Kevin Bacon,; CBS’s ELEMENTARY; ABC’s THE GILDED LILYS; CW’s CULT, CARRIE DIARIES and ARROW.


HA-HA Half-Hours: NBC’s ANIMAL KINGDOM, 1600 PENN, FRIDAY NIGHT DINNER; FOX’S REBOUNDING (Steve Levitan/Jason Winer – a winning combo), MINDY KALING medical office comedy, EL JEFE (Mercedes Ruehl /Ryan Hanson); CBS’s PARTNERS (3 X’s the charm for Mutchnick /Kohan); ABC’S HOW TO LIVE WITH YOUR PARENTS (Sarah Chalke), AMERICAN JUDY (I always love Judy Greer!)

Some shows are probably getting the message (wink-wink) that they can start staffing. Others have already gotten Early Season’s Orders like NBC’s Matthew Perry GO ON and ABC’s MISTRESSES.

Sooo many factors play into the decisions of the Network Execs –

  • Star Power
  • Producer Power
  • Director Power
  • Writer Power
  • Diversity
  • Studio Connection
  • Audience Testing

Formal Announcements happen next month in New York. We’ll find out then which shows will be cancelled, which ones will get another chance and which new ones will be included in the lucky few.

2012 Broadcast Network Upfront Meetings

May 14, 2012 NBC New York Morning
May 14, 2012 FOX New York Afternoon
May 15, 2012 Univision New York Morning
May 15, 2012 ABC New York Afternoon
May 16, 2012 CBS New York Afternoon
May 17, 2012 The CW New York Morning

I’ll be secretly rooting for a Pilot I’ve got a guest role on, but I don’t want to jinx it, so I’m not going to say. We’ll all find out soon enough. Fingers crossed!

(For more on the contenders, check out “dev watch” on FUTON CRITIC!)

What kind of shows are you rooting for?

Friday 4-27-12 JUST IN….

Pilot Panic: 2nd Hot List Update  (my predictions are still tracking)

Thursday 5-3-12 As of today ….

Pilot Panic 3rd Hot List Update (many of my predictions are still looking good)

Monday 5-7-12 This week speculation will turn into actual news…

 PRIMETIME PILOT PANIC: Pre-Upfront Week Update

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