A&E Dares To Extend 'Beyond Scared Straight'

A&E Network has picked up a third season of non-fiction series Beyond Scared Straight, following prison and jail deterrence programs aimed at helping at-risk teens, the network said, citing David McKillop, EVP of programming.

Inspired by Scared Straight!, the Oscar- and multiple Emmy-winning documentary film by Arnold Shapiro, Beyond Scared Straight is currently cable's No. 1 non-fiction crime/justice show, according to A&E. In season two the series averaged 1.5 million adults 18-49, 1.4 million adults 25-54 and 2.6 million total viewers.

The series premiere, in January 2011, was A&E's most-watched original series launch of all-time.

"Beyond Scared Straight is raw, honest storytelling that commands your attention," McKillop said in a release. "It's completely unique in the television landscape while at the same time being utterly relevant and important to the times."

Season 3 will begin production in late 2011 on 13 new one-hour episodes slated to premiere in 2012's third quarter. New episodes from season 2 will return in December 2011.

It is produced by Arnold Shapiro Productions for A&E Network. Executive producer is Arnold Shapiro. Co-executive producer is Paul J. Coyne. A&E Executive Producers are McKillop and Laura Fleury.