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NBC confirms ‘Seinfeld’ move, other web shifts

NBC has confirmed the move of “Seinfeld” to Thursdays beginning Feb. 4 as part of an expected four-night program shift and has announced that it will double-run “Cheers” at 8 and 9 p.m. through the February sweeps.

The changes also include moving “Wings” up to 8:30 Thursdays, slotting the new Barry Levinson hour “Homicide: Life on the Street” at 9 p.m. Wednesdays and moving “Seinfeld” companion “Mad About You” to 9:30 p.m. Saturday, as reported (Daily Variety, Dec. 22), in a revised Saturday comedy block following “Almost Home” (newly created from the ashes of “The Torkelsons”), “Nurses” (moving up to

NBC will also schedule two struggling first-year comedies from 8-9 p.m. Fridays starting Feb. 12, the in-house production “Out All Night” and Twentieth TV’s “Rhythm & Blues,” while shelving two other sitcoms — NBC Prods.’ Malcolm-Jamal Warner vehicle “Here and Now” and Norman Lear’s “The Powers That Be”– after Jan. 30.

Sophomore drama “I’ll Fly Away” will also have its final airing of the season Feb. 5, though NBC said it remains a contender for next year.

NBC’s Friday comedies will lead into previously scheduled Mike Tyson and Perry Mason movies, respectively, Feb. 12 and 19, with a special “Days of Our Lives” and the Soap Opera Digest Awards to air Feb. 26. The change creates a three-way comedy logjam from 8-9 p.m.–the very scenario NBC sought to avoid when it changed its lineup last spring by going with reality series.

“Cheers” set the sweeping realignment in motion when cast and crew opted not to return next season, prompting NBC to seek to establish “Seinfeld” as its heir apparent and robbing “Wings” (like “Cheers,” a Paramount series) the clout to retain the post-“Cheers” slot.

“Homicide,” from Levinson’s Baltimore Pictures and Reeves Entertainment, will premiere after the Super Bowl before settling into its slot between “Unsolved Mysteries” and “Law & Order.””Almost Home” comes from exec producer Michael Jacobs and Disney’s Touchstone TV.

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