ABC adds Winfrey special

ABC’s adding some Oprah firepower to its May sweeps arsenal.

Net has slotted the one-hour special “Oprah Winfrey’s Legends’ Ball” for 8 p.m. Monday, May 15. It will serve as a lead-in for the two-hour second season finale of megahit “Grey’s Anatomy,” which is moving to Monday for the night.

With ABC and Fox locked in a down-to-the wire battle for the adults 18-49 ratings crown, every hour until the end of the season counts. A Winfrey spec doesn’t guarantee boffo ratings, but it will almost certainly improve ABC’s modest timeslot average for 8 p.m. Monday.

Net is also stunting in the slot on May 8, airing a special featuring illusionist David Blaine.

Winfrey special will feature behind-the-scenes footage from a private series of bashes she hosted a year ago in honor of 25 women Winfrey deemed influential to her life and American culture. Weekend event included a white-tie ball, luncheon and gospel brunch.

Hour will also contain original interviews with participants looking back on the event.

Honorees included a mix of historical figures (the late Coretta Scott King, the late Rosa Parks) and entertainers (Aretha Franklin, Tina Turner). Other celebs, including Halle Berry, Mariah Carey and Mary J. Blige, will also be seen on the special.

Winfrey’s Harpo Prods. is producing.

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