TV Guide Gets Most Out of ‘Curb’ Reruns

Variety’s Michael Schneider recently asked about the lack of post-show specials related to scripted programming, a la “The Bachelor’s” “Women tell all” add-ons, which essentially get additional bang out of the franchise with a cheap sit-around-talking format.

Such programming is popular abroad, but not here. Cable networks, in particular — which have time to kill after “Mad Men” or “Damages” — seem like naturals.

So I was interested to see TV Guide Network will be doing just that to maximize its “Curb Your Enthusiasm” reruns with “Curb: The Discussion,” enlisting celebrity panelists to discuss the show.

Moreover, having such a program follow the telecasts means that the content won’t have to be gutted to accommodate commercials and fit a half-hour format.

Frankly, it’s probably the best idea TV Guide Network has had since the channel canceled “Square Off.”

Here’s the announcement:

LOS
ANGELES (April
7, 2010) –
TV Guide Network today announced the first round of celebrity panelists to join “Curb:
The Discussion”
—exclusive, never-before-seen extras that will
air immediately following each “Curb” episode premiering on the network
starting this summer. Comedian and frequent Larry David collaborator Jerry
Seinfeld,
Oscar® nominated actress Taraji P. Henson
and Golden Globe Award®
winning “Mad Men
star Jon Hamm are confirmed to appear as celebrity
panelists on “Curb: The Discussion” when “Curb Your Enthusiasm” debuts
on TV Guide Network
Wednesday, June 2 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.
 
TV
Guide Network is not cutting the “Curb” episodes to fit a traditional
half-hour format, thereby allowing the show to play as originally
intended by Larry David. The episodes will be edited only for language
and nudity. To preserve the series full-length episodes, the network
worked with Larry David to develop a panel discussion that rounds out
the episode to a one-hour format while providing a unique forum for
hilariously dissecting the world of “Curb.” Hosted by comedienne and
“Curb” series regular Susie Essman, “Curb: The
Discussion” features a panel of high profile guest stars, media pundits
and prominent social figures who inject their wit, humor and unique
point of view to debate Larry’s ethical dilemmas featured in each episode
of the show. The panelists watch an episode of “Curb” together and tape
the discussion immediately afterward, capturing their raw and
unrehearsed reactions to the episode’s particular moral issues. These
original roundtable discussions will air immediately following each
episode premiere of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” on TV Guide Network beginning
in June. 
 
“With
Susie Essman hosting and moderating ‘Curb: The Discussion’, the panels
will no doubt result in hilarious, off-the-cuff television.” said Diane Robina, Executive
Vice President, Programming & Marketing for TV Guide Network. “And
offering these original and engaging discussions will bring even more
viewers to discover and rediscover ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm.’”
 
In
addition to Mr. Seinfeld, Ms. Henson and Mr. Hamm, celebrity panelists
will include actor and producer Seth Green, heavy metal singer and
film director Rob Zombie, actor and author Hill Harper,
comedienne and television writer Merrill Markoe, physician and
television personality Dr. Drew Pinsky, radio and television
personality Adam Corolla, actor Rex Lee,
musician Dave
Navarro
, “Millionaire
Matchmaker
” star Patti Stanger, actor and standup
comedian D.L.
Hughley
, and comedians Jeff Ross and Patton
Oswalt
, among others.  Media pundits and social figures will
also join the celebrity panelists to debate “Curb’s” issues, including
“Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough and co-host
Mika Brezinski
, celebrity attorney Gloria Allred, New
York Times ethicist Randy Cohen, and clinical
and forensic psychologist Dr. Stan Katz, among
others. 
 
Award-winning
television producer
Scott Carter (Executive Producer, “Real Time with Bill Maher
and “Politically
Incorrect
”) is producing “Curb: The Discussion” in collaboration
with Larry David and “Curb Your Enthusiasm” executive producers Alec Berg,
Jeff Schaffer and David Mandel. Both Carter and
David were instrumental in securing the A-list celebrity panelists.

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