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The New York Television Festival Announces ‘Premiere Week’ Screening Series Featuring Fall Shows From ABC, FOX, CBS, MRC and The CW, NBC and HBO

August 21, 2008

NEW YORK, Aug. 21 /PRNewswire/ — The New York Television Festival (NYTVF) joined with network partners ABC, FOX, CBS, Media Rights Capital (“MRC”) and The CW, NBC and HBO today to announce the lineup for the NYTVF’s third annual Premiere Week screening series, taking place September 12-17 during the NYTVF. This year’s Premiere Week will present some of the most anticipated shows of the new TV season, including debut screenings of ABC’s “Life on Mars,” FOX’s “Fringe,” CBS’s “Worst Week,” The CW and Media Rights Capital’s “Easy Money,” NBC’s “Life” and HBO’s “The Life and Times of Tim.” This year marks the third year of participation for ABC, FOX and NBC and the first-time participation of CBS, MRC and HBO. All Premiere Week events will take place at New World Stages in Midtown Manhattan.

“In its third year, Premiere Week has established itself as a valuable way for networks to introduce their new Fall shows with the hottest buzz to trendsetting New York audiences,” said NYTVF founder Terence Gray. “We are thrilled to feature new programs from all of the major broadcast networks and a major premium network at this year’s Premiere Week.”

   2008 NYTVF Premiere Week Lineup   Friday, September 12, 8 PM:  ABC's "Life on Mars"

On Friday, September 12th, the NYTVF and ABC will present a special sneak peek of “Life on Mars” with cast members participating in a Q&A.

“The NYTVF is a unique platform that gives us a great opportunity to get viewers excited about the premiere of ‘Life on Mars.’ We’re confident ‘Life on Mars’ will deliver the kind of entertainment our audiences have grown to love,” said Marla Provencio and Michael Benson, executive vice presidents, ABC Entertainment.

NYPD Detective Sam Tyler finds himself in 1973 in the cultural hotbed of New York City during the tumultuous times of the Vietnam War, Watergate, women’s lib and the civil and gay rights movements. He is suddenly hurtled back in time when he’s ripped from 2008 after being hit by a car while chasing down a criminal, on ABC’s new drama series, “Life on Mars,” which will premiere THURSDAY, OCTOBER 9 (10:00-11:00 p.m., ET).

“Life on Mars” stars Jason O’Mara as Sam Tyler, Harvey Keitel as Lieutenant Gene Hunt, Michael Imperioli as Detective Ray Carling, Gretchen Mol as Annie Norris and Jonathan Murphy as Detective Chris Skelton. Lisa Bonet will appear as a recurring guest star as Maya Daniels. Josh Appelbaum, Andre Nemec and Scott Rosenberg are executive producers. “Life on Mars” is produced by 20th Century Fox Television and ABC Studios.

Saturday, September 13, 8 PM: FOX’s “Fringe”

On Saturday, September 13th, the NYTVF and FOX will present a special screening event featuring “Fringe,” the anticipated new hour-long thriller from J.J. Abrams (“Lost”), Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, the team behind “Star Trek,”"Mission: Impossible III” and “Alias.” The event begins with red-carpet arrivals of the stars and producers of the new series followed by a screening. After the screening, “Fringe” cast and producers will engage in a brief discussion about the show’s creation and production in New York City.

“Fringe,” currently shooting on location in New York City, is a fantastical thriller about an unlikely trio who uncovers a deadly mystery involving a series of unbelievable events that may be a part of a larger, more disturbing pattern that blurs the line between the possible and the impossible. The series, debuting with a special extended series premiere Tuesday, September 9 (8:00-9:30 PM ET/PT) on FOX, stars Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, John Noble, Lance Reddick, Kirk Acevedo, Mark Valley, Blair Brown and Jasika Nicole; and is produced by Warner Bros. Television and Bad Robot Productions.

Sunday, September 14, 4:30 PM: CBS’s “Worst Week”

On Sunday, September 14th, the NYTVF will present a pair of highly anticipated screening events. CBS has joined NYTVF Premiere Week for the first time to present the new comedy series “Worst Week.” The “Worst Week” event begins with a debut screening of the pilot for the new Fall comedy series. After the screening, star Kyle Bornheimer and creator Matt Tarses will be on hand to engage in a brief discussion about the show’s creation and production.

“Worst Week” is a comedy about Sam Briggs, an entertainment magazine editor who will do anything to please his girlfriend’s parents…but instead becomes a one-man wrecking crew whenever he’s around them. Sam (Kyle Bornheimer, “Jericho”) and his girlfriend, Melanie Clayton (Erinn Hayes, “Kitchen Confidential”), have only one hurdle left to clear as they start their life together: breaking the news to Mel’s conservative parents that they have a wedding in the works and a baby on the way. Dick (Kurtwood Smith, “That ’70s Show”), a stern Judge, and his wife Angela (Nancy Lenehan, “My Name is Earl”), are protective of their daughter, and are really trying to let go of the anger they feel toward Sam…after all, disaster follows whenever he visits their house.

“Worst Week” is produced by Universal Media Studios and CBS Paramount Network Television. Matt Tarses (“Scrubs”) and Jimmy Mulville (“Whose Line Is It Anyway?”) are the executive producers. The show debuts Monday, September 22nd at 9:30 PM ET on CBS

Sunday, September 14, 7:30 PM: MRC’s “Easy Money”

In the evening of Sunday the 14th, the NYTVF and MRC are partnering to present a special world premiere screening event of the new drama series “Easy Money,” an original one-hour drama about a family that runs a high interest loan business. The new series stars Emmy Award-winning actress Laurie Metcalf (“Desperate Housewives,”"Roseanne”), Jeff Hephner (“The O.C.”), Judge Reinhold (Swing Vote, The Santa Clause Trilogy), Nick Searcy (“Rodney”), Jay Ferguson (“Sleeper Cell”), Gary Farmer (“Moose TV”) and Katie Lowes (“The Ghost Whisperer”). Diane Frolov and Andy Schneider (“Northern Exposure,”"The Chris Isaak Show,”"The Sopranos”) serve as Executive Producers for the series, along with producer Brandon Hill.

“We are thrilled to premiere our original drama ‘Easy Money’ for audiences at the New York Television Festival a week prior to its debut in the CW Sunday night line-up,” said Keith Samples, President, Television, Media Rights Capital. “We have an all-star cast and wonderful stories told by Emmy-winning producers. We think the show will be a great addition to Sunday night television.”

“Easy Money” follows 28 year-old Morgan Buffkin (Hephner) who finds himself in charge of Prestige Payday Loans, his eccentric family’s enormously successful short-term loan business. Any doubts Morgan has about running his family’s business are quickly replaced by dealing with family business: Morgan’s brother Cooper (Ferguson) insists on driving a silver plated Hummer, his sister Brandy (Lowes) has questionable morals, he suspects that his mother (Metcalfe) and father (Searcy) are not being completely honest with him about his relation to the family, and every so often part-time detective Barry (Reinhold) drops in. “Easy Money” follows the Buffkin Family in a modern-day Dickensian tale of money and identity. “Easy Money” will premiere Sunday, September 21 at 9 pm ET as part of the CW Sunday Night primetime programming block produced by MRC.

Monday, September 15, 8 PM: NBC’s “Life”

On Monday, September 15th, the NYTVF offers a special sneak-peek fan screening of the premiere episode of the sophomore police drama, “Life.” Tickets to this event are free and open to the public. “The second season of “Life” premieres Monday, September 29th on NBC before moving to its new timeslot on Fridays at 10 PM ET.

“Life,” from Rand Ravich (“The Astronaut’s Wife”) and Far Shariat (“Confessions of a Dangerous Mind”), focuses on a detective who is given a second chance. Golden Globe nominee Damian Lewis (“Band of Brothers”) plays complex, offbeat Detective Charlie Crews, who returns to the force after serving time in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. Crews’ new lease on life has provided him with a Zen-like outlook, peace of mind and no need for vengeance, an attitude which can be challenging to maintain when someone he cares about is threatened — or when he is investigating the mystery surrounding the murder he was falsely accused of.

Lewis is joined by cast members Sarah Shahi (“Rush Hour 3″) as Dani Reese, Charlie’s skeptical and demanding partner; Brent Sexton (HBO’s “Deadwood”) as Officer Bobby Stark; Donal Logue (“Grounded for Life)” as Captain Kevin Tidwell, and Adam Arkin (“Chicago Hope”) as Crew’s former cellmate Ted Earley. “Life” is a Universal Media Studios production. Creator Rand Ravich is executive producer and writer; Shariat is also executive producer and writer, and Dan Sackheim serves as executive producer and director on the series.

Wednesday, September 17, 7 PM: HBO’s “The Life and Times of Tim”

On the evening of Wednesday, September 17th, the NYTVF and HBO are teaming up for a sneak preview of the new half-hour animated comedy series, “The Life and Times of Tim.” The event will consist of a debut screening followed by a conversation with the show’s creator and executive producer, Steven Dildarian.

“‘The Life and Times of Tim’ is a perfect example of the kind of fresh and distinctive programming our subscribers have come to expect,” notes Michael Lombardo, President, Programming Group and West Coast Operations. “I’m delighted that we can showcase this irreverent, animated series at the New York Television Festival.”

An animated series about an average guy whose instincts repeatedly lead him down the wrong path, “The Life and Times of Tim” was created by Steve Dildarian, who also executive produces and writes the show, and provides the voice of the title character. On the surface, Tim is a typical, twenty-something New Yorker who’s looking to get ahead at work, while his girlfriend Amy just wants him to be normal, like her friends’ boyfriends. But in Tim’s world, the simplest everyday decisions get in the way, thanks to his habit of befriending unreliable characters who repeatedly get him into serious trouble. The series is produced for HBO by MRC; Tom Werner, Jimmy Miller and Mike Clements also serve as executive producers. Other voices on the show include Mary Jane Otto as Amy, Peter Giles as The Boss, Matt Johnson as The Boss’ assistant, Rodney (as well as other characters), and Nick Kroll as Tim’s best friend Stu. “The Life an Times of Tim” kicks off its ten-episode season Sunday, September 28 (11:00-11:30 pm, ET).

Passes granting admission to Premiere Week events are available on the Festival Web site. To order, visit nytvf.com and click on “Box Office.” Single tickets to some events will be made available at a later date. The 2008 NYTVF opens on Friday, September 12th and runs through Wednesday, September 17th.

The NYTVF debuted in 2005 as the industry’s first showcase for independent television. Recent pilots that premiered at the Festival and have been sold to major networks include the scripted comedy “Split the Difference” to NBC Universal Television Studios and the improv comedy pilot “Criss-Cross” to A&E Television Networks. Additionally, the reality series “Off the Hook” was purchased and broadcast as a series by Versus.

The NYTVF is supported by sponsors such as Procter & Gamble Productions, People’s Choice, MSN and the William Morris Agency. Official Network Sponsors for the 2008 NYTVF include NBC Universal, FOX, ABC, CBS, MRC, A&E, Lifetime, and E!. The NYTVF works in conjunction with the Mayor’s Office of New York City.

For more information on the NYTVF, please visit http://www.newyorktelevisionfestival.com/

About the New York Television Festival

The NYTVF was founded in 2005 as the industry’s first recognized independent television festival, providing a platform to elevate the work of artists creating for the small screen. Held annually each fall in New York City, the birthplace of modern television, the Festival unites artists, executives, industry figures, and fans together in one forum to celebrate the medium and to help shape its future. Along with the Independent Pilot Competition, the Festival features panel discussions, network premiere screenings, and other special events designed to honor television as an institution and as an art form.

New York Television Festival

CONTACT: Gretchen Wagner, +1-212-843-8076, gwagner@rubenstein.com orJodi Sevin, +1-212-843-8393, jsevin@rubenstein.com, both for New YorkTelevision Festival

Web site: http://www.newyorktelevisionfestival.com/http://www.nytvf.com/




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