Arbitron, which announced that it would discontinue its TV ratings at year’s end, will extend the service until March 1 in Detroit and Cleveland, markets that won’t be serviced by Nielsen until May. Separately, of ad agencies that based 1994 media buys on Arbitron data, nearly half plan to renegotiate using Nielsen figures, according to a study by Petry Research. And 57% of agencies and media buyers said they’ll continue to use Arbitron data through Jan. 1, while 39 % have or will soon convert to Nielsen only.
* * *A new national touring production of “Grease” starring Rosie O’Donnell will make its way to the Orange County Performing Arts Center March 29-April 3, produced by Barry and Fran Weissler and directed and choreographed by Jeff Calhoun. The new production replaces “Annie Get Your Gun,” which was recently canceled by its producers.
* * *CBS has confirmed plans to premiere primetime soap “Second Chances” from 9-11 p.m. Dec. 2. The series, starring Connie Sellecca and from “Homefront” producers Lynn Marie Latham and Bernard Lechowick, will air regularly at 10 p.m. Thursdays starting the following week.
* * *Ted Eccles and Richard Squire have formed Electric Ideas, an entertainment marketing and production group. Eccles was president of New Wave Prods., a promotion company exclusive to Walt Disney Pictures. Squire was chief executive of Planet 3, a television promotion company.
* * *MCA/Universal and ABC are teaming in a monthlong “Coach” promotion touting sweatshirts and sports-related programming from ABC’s library. Promos will air during the show as well as during college football games and the Nov. 22 installment of “Monday Night Football.”
* * *Nelson/Snow Entertainment, a Gotham production org specializing in music/sports combinations, has pacted with ESPN to create “Extreme Sports Bloopers,” a half-hour spec to air Dec. 27. Victoria Jackson (“Saturday Night Live”) hosts.
* * *Grundy Worldwide has sold gameshow “Hot Streak” to Israel’s new commercial Second Channel. It will be known as “Hamesh, Hamesh” (Five, Five) and be produced in Tel Aviv by Danny Paran and his Set Prods. Reshet, which has one of three Second Channel franchises, commissioned 26 episodes of the half-hour series.