Net ditches 'Rollergirls,' OKs trio of new pilots
A&E has greenlit a trio of reality pilots, including one about the sweet life of Spelling scion Randy Spelling, while pulling the plug on “Rollergirls.”
Net exec VP-general manager Bob DeBitetto also renewed frosh series “Dallas SWAT,” ordering another 13 episodes that will take place in other cities in addition to Dallas when it returns to the sked later this year.
While A&E execs await the arrival of off-net scripted dramas “CSI: Miami” and “The Sopranos,” senior VP of alternative/comedy programming Nancy Dubuc is filling the pipeline with the network’s next batch of reality hits.
n Untitled one-hour pilot from exec producer J.T. Taylor (“The Osbournes”) follows showbiz kids Randy Spelling, Sean Stewart (son of Rod) and budding talent agent Dave Weintraub as they move out of their parents’ homes and try life as roomies. I Candy TV produces.
n “Out There” centers on members of an officially sanctioned Paranormal Research Society at Penn State. As part of the curriculum, students are required to investigate poltergeists, hauntings and other forms of paranormal activity. Show is from Go Go Luckey Prods. (MTV’s “Laguna Beach”) and Four Seasons Prods.
n “I Never Said That” has the cabler mixing “Mystery Science Theater 3000” with “Who’s Line Is It Anyway?”: Producers take B-roll of ordinary folks on the street and a host of comedians, who’ve never seen the footage, improvise the voices of the folks onscreen in front of a live audience. Borderline TV produces.
Dubuc said the new shows follow A&E’s success in the “real-life” genre, which has included “Airline” and “Dog the Bounty Hunter.”
“We’re beyond fluke status now. There is a distinct A&E voice that’s resonating with our audience,” she said. “These three shows keep things fresh for us in different ways, either through an unexpected character or a new style of execution.”
As for “Rollergirls,” Dubuc said that while execs were pleased with the content of the show — another collaboration with Gary Auerbach’s Go Go Luckey — ratings were subpar.
Next month, A&E will bow “King of Cars,” while a new season of “Dog” rolls out March 21.