Fox Family cries ‘Wolf’ for 1st series renewal

Telescene making 22 more episodes of action comedy

NEW YORK — The Fox Family Channel has engineered its first major TV series renewal since Rupert Murdoch and Haim Saban revamped the network’s schedule a year ago. Telescene Entertainment will produce 22 episodes for a second season of teen action comedy “Big Wolf on Campus.”

The first 22 half-hours started on Fox Family in May, and Michael Yudin, president of the Montreal-based Telescene, said the series has doubled the rating Fridays at 5:30 p.m., pulling in particularly strong numbers among teenagers.

Yudin said Telescene also has landed a pilot commitment from MTV for “Live Through This,” a one-hour drama series about ’70s rock ‘n’ roll band members who go on a reunion tour with their kids who range in age from 16 to 21. Yudin noted it’s the first time MTV has signed an outside company to produce a series for the network.

Sources say “Big Wolf” costs about $400,000 per half-hour, a relatively low budget that still yields state-of-the-art special effects because Telescene saves money by hiring a cast of unknowns and filming in Montreal. “Wolf” runs on the YTV family-oriented cabler in Canada and gets distributed overseas by Fremantle Corp.

The pilot of the hourlong “Live Through This,” also to be shot in Montreal, will come in about $800,000, sources said, and if it goes to series, each episode will cost about $650,000.

Telescene also produces the half-hour series “Misguided Angels” for Fox Family.

Yudin is one of the executive producers of “Big Wolf,” along with Robin Stry, Paul Painter and Peter Pearson. The series’ producer is Robert Baylis.

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