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3 items from 2008

'Seeker' looks to revive a dormant genre

30 October 2008 2:00 PM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

"Legend of the Seeker" is hoping to conjure up some ratings magic and revive a dormant genre when it debuts in syndication this weekend.

The weekly scripted epic fantasy, about a woodsman (Craig Horner) who discovers he has magical powers and sets out to stop a sinister tyrant, will become the first major action hour to bow in syndication in recent years with its two-hour premiere. The most recent effort, NBC/MGM's "She Spies," failed to generate much interest, lasting only two seasons (2002-04).

Many had left the genre for dead, as such big-budget first-run dramas as "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys" and "Xena: Warrior Princess" were considered to be part of another era. But "Seeker" distributor Disney-abc Domestic Television and producer ABC Studios believe the time is right for the weekly action hour to make a comeback.

"Entertainment and fantasy and escapism are very important in the world right now, »

- By Kimberly Nordyke

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Syndication back from vacation

7 September 2008 11:00 AM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Monday marks a big day in first-run syndication this season, with no fewer than five new shows entering the competition for eyeballs.

Talkers "The Bonnie Hunt Show" and "The Doctors," the game show "Deal or No Deal" and the court strips "Judge Karen" and "Family Court With Judge Penny" are among the new shows debuting nationwide. They will be followed by the Sept. 22 launches of the game show "Trivial Pursuit: America Plays" and the court show "Judge Jeanine Pirro" (the latter of which is airing solely on CW stations nationwide) as well as the scripted weekly "Legend of the Seeker" during the weekend of Nov. 1.

While the failure rate in syndication is high, the talent and producers behind all the new series say they offer something unique for viewers. For his part, Howie Mandel, who hosts both the primetime and syndicated version of "Deal," isn't worried about viewers seeing too much of him. »

- By Kimberly Nordyke

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Sam Raimi syndie series sets debut

17 July 2008 1:00 PM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Sam Raimi's scripted series "Wizard's First Rule" will debut the weekend of Nov. 1 in national syndication, Disney-abc Domestic Television and ABC Studios said Thursday.

The hourlong epic fantasy series, starring Craig Horner and Bridget Regan, will kick off with a two-hour premiere. Raimi exec produces with Rob Tapert, Joshua Donen, Ned Nalle and Kenneth Biller. »

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