Global goes for a 10 this fall

Shaw SVP Barb Williams talks about the net’s programming strategy and its 10 new shows for fall.

Looking to add some “fresh sparkle” to the Global 2011-2012 schedule, the network has added 10 shows to its fall lineup.

Leaving Mondays intact, the focus in LA was to secure some strong new dramas and fill Friday night prime time with a fresh slate, Barb Williams, SVP content, Shaw Media, tells Playback.

“We had [such] a strong slate of returning hits that frankly, we were in the delightful position of not needing a whole heck of a lot,” Williams said of the Shaw team’s trip to LA earlier this month.

“One of the objectives in LA was to make sure that we came back with a stronger Friday night, and we absolutely accomplished that,” she adds.

The only night to feature an all-new prime-time lineup, Fridays on Global will include A Gifted Man at 8 p.m., new half-hour comedies I Hate My Teenage Daughter at 9 p.m. and Happily Divorced at 9:30 p.m., followed by the new Sarah Michelle Gellar starrer, The Ringer, at 10 p.m.

“I think [A Gifted Man] is a solid lead in for the two comedies which also were very much 25-to-54 female oriented,” she says of the new drama, which stars Patrick Wilson (Angels in America) as a surgeon who starts receiving messages from his dead wife. It is directed and co-produced by Jonathan Demme.

“It’s a really great show and it gives us a chance to give a couple of great comedies an opportunity to get established,” she says, adding that the return of Gellar in The Ringer should be strong in the 10 p.m. slot, with its younger, built-in Buffy audience.

The drama Global feels most strongly about is Prime Suspect at 10 p.m. on Thursday nights, she says. Directed by Peter Berg, the show is based on a UK series of the same name, following a “tough as nails” female detective as she tracks down bad guys.

“Part of our goal in LA was to find the ‘It’ show and I think we’ve found it in Prime Suspect,” she quips.

Other new additions to the grid include Parenthood on Tuesday nights at 10 p.m. (formerly on Citytv) and Harry’s Law, also formerly a Citytv show, on Wednesdays at 9 p.m. Thursdays will see the addition of How to Be a Gentleman at 8:30, which leads into ratings pace horse Bones, and then Prime Suspect. On Sunday nights, Global picked up Allen Gregory, about a precocious 7-year-old who goes to elementary school after being home-schooled, to slot between The Simpsons at 8 p.m. and Family Guy at 9 p.m. Mid-season shows include Are You There Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea, Napoleon Dynamite, The Finder and The 2-2.

Of picking up Parenthood from Citytv, Williams says that the network felt the show was a good fit for Global’s female-friendly Tuesday nights (which also include Glee and NCIS: Los Angeles) and that it had a good chance of building its audience with a new home with The Good Wife moved to Sundays at 10 p.m.. 

“It really fits with that 25-to-54 audience, and particularly with Tuesday nights at 10, for the last season, Parenthood and The Good Wife have been splitting that audience. Now with Good Wife moved off Tuesdays, it opens up Tuesday nights to let Parenthood really be the solid offering for women.” 

From Playback Daily