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'River Monsters' renewed by Animal Planet

Jeremy Wade will be back with his scary underwater creatures: Animal Planet has renewed River Monsters for a seventh season.

The unscripted show that sends Wade sleuthing for freshwater mysteries is Animal Planet’s best-performing series ever. It’s sixth season debut was its most-watched-season premiere and also ranked as the most-watched network season premiere among key demos.

The two-hour opener, dubbed “Amazon Apocalypse,” averaged 1.7 million viewers.

The sixth season finale of River Monsters will air Monday, May 26 at 9 ET with “Body Snatcher,” an episode in which Wade investigates rumors of a body-snatching spirit and predatory freshwater mermaid that is said to drag men deep into the river, never to be seen again.

'The View' says goodbye to Barbara Walters

Hillary Clinton and Oprah Winfrey joined just about every female anchor currently on network TV to bid farewell today to Barbara Walters, who is retiring this week from The View and ABC News.

After taping a reunion with current and former co-hosts of The View (welcome back, Star Jones, Rosie O’Donnell and Lisa Ling!) that aired earlier today, Walters, 84, rejoined current hosts Whoopi Goldberg, Jenny McCarthy and Sherri Shepherd for one last lovefest behind the desk for a final show that’ll run Friday. Dressed in a white jacket and black skirt, Walters walked on stage for one last time as the crowd chanted “Barbara! Barbara!” Pictures from her long broadcast history (Walters and the Carters; Walters and Hugh Downs) flashed in the background. READ FULL STORY

'How I Met Your Mother' spinoff: 'Didn't work out'

One of the most glaring omissions from CBS’ fall schedule is How I Met Your Dad, the much-talked about spinoff of CBS’s long-running comedy. But CBS topper Nina Tassler told reporters Wednesday that “things on the pilot didn’t work out” and the producers can now shop it elsewhere.

The hope was to retool the comedy pilot, but the show’s producers weren’t interested in returning to the drawing table. The comedy pilot starred Greta Gerwig as Sally, who gradually reveals how she met her partner in flashback. It’s from writers/exec producers Emily Spivey and HIMYM creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas.

READ FULL STORY

ABC defends racy 'Grey's' at 8 p.m.

Two of ABC’s popular — and very steamy — dramas will air an hour earlier on Thursdays this fall, but ABC topper Paul Lee doesn’t seem to be too worried about shaking up the so-called family hour with Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal.

“I think it’s much less relevant than it was than five years ago,” Lee said today in a press conference, after a reporter questioned the idea of airing adult content earlier in the evening. ABC unveiled its fall schedule Tuesday that shifted the sexy medical soap Grey’s to 8 p.m. on Thursdays, and the equally racy Scandal from 10 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Another reporter reminded Lee that ABC once had a reputation for keeping the family hour free of racy shows, he said the sales department was “fully supportive” of the decision to move Grey’s to 8 and that it’s a “non-issue.”

Lee also went on to say that ABC has a “strong” standards and practices department and “we will make sure whatever we air is appropriate.”

Sexy scenes have become a mainstay on both dramas — and characters have even been known to do the hibity-dibity outside of the bedroom. (See: Cristina and Owen in the fan shaft: Fitz and Liv in the White House). But Scandal, in particular, also features violent content like torture. Watch some below: READ FULL STORY

ABC fall schedule revealed: 'Scandal' on the move

Scandal will air an hour earlier on Thursdays, while Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will move to 9 on Tuesdays, according to ABC’s new fall schedule released today.

The rest of ABC’s schedule remains intact, especially Dancing with the Stars — which will stay a one-night-a-week franchise (sorry, fringe lovers).  Here’s the full schedule (new shows are in bold): READ FULL STORY

CBS orders 'NCIS' spinoff, 'The Odd Couple'

CBS gave the go-ahead to another NCIS spinoff, along with a retelling of the classic comedy The Odd Couple that will star Matthew Perry.

Tea Leoni will also debut on CBS this fall as the Secretary of State while Laurie Metcalf returns in a family sitcom about a raucous Boston clan.

What’s missing from this round of pickups? There was talk of a CSI spinoff that would have starred Patricia Arquette as a special agent in charge of the FBI’s cyber crime division. 

CBS, which has already issued verdicts on most of its shows save The Crazy Ones, Intelligence and The Mentalist, will present its fall lineup Wednesday in New York.

Here’s what’s planned (so far) for the 2014-15 season: READ FULL STORY

'American Horror Story: Freak Show': A bearded lady? A scary clown? Details on the new season -- EXCLUSIVE

FX’s American Horror Story: Freak Show, about a 1950s Florida freak show run by a German (Jessica Lange, naturally), won’t premiere until later this year — but co-creator Ryan Murphy is revealing some more details on what he and the writers have in store for the series’ fourth iteration.

“It was always a concept that Jessica and I talked about really early on,” says Murphy of Freak Show. “It was always her favorite one, which I thought was funny. I’ve had many different versions that I’ve run by her. I just love it. It feels really right. I thought it was going to be light but it’s turning out to be quite terrifyingly dark, which it feels much more like the Asylum season. But look — if you have a character named the Clown Killer, it’s going to be dark.” READ FULL STORY

CW renews 'Beauty and the Beast,' orders 'Flash'

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CW is bringing back three fan favorites and ordering a pair of comic-book inspired dramas for fall.

Beauty and the Beast and Hart of Dixie will make a comeback, as will the freshman drama The 100. They join the previously announced renewals of Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries, The Originals, Arrow and Reign.

CW also picked up four new series in anticipation of its fall presentation to advertisers next week. They are The Flash, Jane the Virgin, iZombie, and The Messengers. Here are the official descriptions of the new dramas: READ FULL STORY

USA Network developing projects from 'Lost' creator Carlton Cuse, Jessica Biel

The USA Network is on the search for its next hit, with the announcement today of it’s 2014-15 development slate.

An alien drama from Lost creator Carlton Cuse, a comedy from Amy Poehler, and a single-cam comedy about a ski resort from Jessica Biel’s Iron Ocean Films are among the development projects touted by the network, who released descriptions for more than a dozen in-the-works possible series. READ FULL STORY

Death Watch 2014: What's back, what's not

UPDATED: Here’s what’s been canceled (and what’s returning) for this fall.

CBS

How I Met Your Mother: FAREWELL!

2 Broke GirlsRENEWED

Bad Teacher CANCELED

Friends with Better Lives CANCELED

Mike & MollyRENEWED

MomRENEWED

HostagesCANCELED

NCISRENEWED

NCISLARENEWED

Person of InterestRENEWED

ElementaryRENEWED

SurvivorRENEWED

Criminal MindsRENEWED

CSIRENEWED

The Big Bang TheoryRENEWED

The MillersRENEWED

The Crazy Ones: CANCELED

Two and a Half Men: RENEWED

Hawaii Five-0RENEWED

Blue BloodsRENEWED

The Amazing RaceRENEWED

The Good WifeRENEWED

The Mentalist RENEWED

Intelligence: CANCELLED

NEXT: Fox….

Steve Carell comedy earns TBS pickup

Steve Carell and his wife Nancy just sold a series to TBS.

The cable net has given a thumbs-up to Angie Tribeca, which will be a satire on police procedurals. The single-camera comedy will star Rashida Jones and will revolve around an eccentric group of Los Angeles detectives. Jones plays Angie Tribeca, a lone wolf who’s capable, committed, strong and not thrilled when her boss (Jere Burns, Justified) tells her she has to work with a new partner.

Making guest appearances in the opening episode of Angie Tribeca are Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2), Lisa Kudrow (FriendsWeb Therapy), Gary Cole (Pineapple Express), Nancy Carell (Bridesmaids), Hayes Macarthur (Life as We Know It) and Matthew Glave (Growing Up Fisher).

TBS also ordered a series from David Kohan and Max Mutchnick (Will & Grace) called Buzzy’s. Starring Ashley Tisdale (High School Musical), the ensemble comedy centers on a group of coworkers who all went to high school together who reunite to work at a barbership. TBS ordered 10 episodes of the comedy that’ll also launch next year.

 

Showtime to adapt Spike Lee's 'She's Gotta Have It' for TV series

Spike Lee’s first feature film, She’s Gotta Have It, is coming to Showtime in the form of a new series, a rep confirmed to EW.

She’s Gotta Have It premiered in 1986 and had a huge impact on the independent film movement. The movie stars Tracy Camilla Johns as a woman who won’t commit to any of her three boyfriends, instead choosing to enjoy each of their company while still maintaining her independence.

The TV series will be a contemporized take on the film, with Lee set to direct and write.

How TV networks REALLY pick which pilots become series

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While we wait for the broadcast networks to choose which of their comedy and drama pilots will get a series order for next season, here’s a handy primer on how this decades-old hit-making process works…

1. Choose your pilots from hundreds of scripts. “What’s hot this year? Zombies? Make sure we got a zombie one.”

2. Cast more than 90 broadcast pilots at the same time, causing a frenzy to lock down the most marketable names: “For the Asian lesbian character I’m thinking Hugh Laurie. Or maybe Hugh Laurie for the Hispanic teen. He’s an actor.

3. Shoot all the pilots at the same time, prompting another scramble for the best behind-the-camera talent. “So your top director choices are all taken, but the second unit guy from The Mob Doctor pilot is still a firm ‘maybe.'”

4. Screen pilots for network insiders who tend to have similar taste: “Having grown up in New York City, I love this comedy pilot about young people in New York City, but I will also ask the people who work for me if they agree.” READ FULL STORY

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