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ABC announces programming for fall season


ABC unveiled a fall schedule this week with three new dramas, including one created by “Thelma & Louise” screenwriter Callie Khouri, one new comedy and the return of comedy programming on Fridays beginning in November.

Series not returning include the first-year drama “Pan Am” and the midseason entries  “GCB,” “Missing” and “The River.”

Of the seven series that premiered last fall, four will return for second seasons — the comedies “Last Man Standing” and “Suburgatory” and the dramas “Once Upon a Time” and “Revenge”  — along with two series that premiered at midseason, the comedy “Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23” and the drama “Scandal.”

Revenge” will move into the Sunday 9 p.m. time slot that had been occupied since 2004 by
“Desperate Housewives,” which ended its run with a two-hour season finale on Sunday.

“Last year was about stability and ambition,” ABC Entertainment Group President Paul Lee said. “This year is about growth and continuing momentum, with strong programming that will stake ABC’s claim on more nights as the home of quality entertainment.”

Khouri, who won a best original screenplay Oscar for her script for the 1991 film `Thelma & Louise,” created “Nashville,” which stars “Friday Night Lights” alumna Connie Britton as a legendary country singer whose popularity is beginning to wane.

The ABC comedy that will premiere at the start of the fall television season is “The Neighbors,” which stars Jami Gertz and Lenny Venito as a couple who move into an exclusive gated New Jersey townhome community they learn is populated by aliens from a planet where the men bear the children.

We knew we wanted a family comedy” to follow “Modern Family,” Lee said, “and give it a real twist.”

The other new fall dramas are: “Last Resort,” the tale of the crew of a ballistic missile submarine who find refuge on an exotic island after being fired on when their commanding officer (Andre Braugher) refuses to fire nuclear weapons at Pakistan without confirmation.

In November, ABC will air the Tim Allen-starring comedy “Last Man Standing” at 8 p.m. Friday, followed at 8:30 p.m. by “Malibu Country,” which stars Reba McEntire who moves from Nashville to Malibu with her sharp-tongued mother (Lily Tomlin) and two children (Juliette Angelo and Justin Prentice) and attempts to jump-start her music career after divorcing a country music legend.

I think it’s time for Friday night to be a destination again for broad family entertainment,” said Lee, whose network ran a Friday comedy block from 1988 to 2000 known as “TGIF,” but has lately devoted the night to unscripted and news programming.

Series to premiere at midseason include “Red Window,” about a stay-at- home housewife (Radha Mitchell) seeking to unveil the truth about her husband’s killing, and “Zero Hour,” which stars “ER” alumnus Anthony Edwards as a paranormal enthusiast magazine publisher whose wife (Jacinda Barrett) is abducted from her antique clock shop.

ABC also announced that the cast of the fall season of “Dancing with the Stars” will consist of past fan favorites, and that the drama “Body of Proof,” the unscripted series “Wife Swap” and the dating series “The Bachelor” will return at midseason.