'Shatner's Raw Nerve' among new series
A&E Networks’ Bio Channel has significantly bolstered its move into original programming, announcing four new series while renewing two other skeins.William Shatner will probe sensitive subjects with celebrity guests on “Shatner’s Raw Nerve,” premiering Aug. 19, from Scott Sternberg Prods. Guests will include Jon Voight, Jimmy Kimmel, Jenna Jameson, Leonard Nimoy, Kelsey Grammer and Valerie Bertinelli. Also from Sternberg, “The Chris Isaak Hour” will feature live perfs and wide-ranging interviews with mainstream musical artists. “Female Forces,” produced by the Grief Co., will feature “Cops”-style ride-alongs with 18 policewomen on the force of suburban Chicago’s Naperville Police Dept. “Why I Ran,” from Intuitive Entertainment, will include up-close interviews with folks who perpetrated high-speed police chases and lived to tell about it. Robert Sharenow will exec produce all four skeins for Bio. For the first quarter, Bio reported a number of key year-to-year ratings gains, with total viewers spiking 25% and adults 25-54 increasing 46%. The A&E Television Networks Channel also announced the renewal of “I Survived” and “Biography.” A&Eannounced the first live episode of “Criss Angel Mindfreak.” Bowing July 30, the seg will feature daredevil host Angel attempting to escape a collapsing six-story building. Season four of “Mindfreak” premieres July 23.