A four-day-a-week stunt for hit game show Deal or No Deal will kick off NBC’s fall schedule beginning with a two-hour Deal special on Monday night, Sept. 18. NBC will use a $20 million prize pot over the first week and a $1 million prize for the associated text-messaging component to try and drive viewers to its fall launches.
In making the announcement, NBC Entertainment President Kevin Reilly did warn that the four Deal airings the first week are a stunt, and the network still hopes to only use the show twice per week, including the high-profile Thursday at 9 time slot. He also praised his network's decision to rest the game show over the summer.
"We would have dominated the summer," Reilly says. "[Fox's] So You Think You Can Dance would have been a far second place."
Sept. 18 will also mark the debut of NBC’s most anticipated rookie, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. The Aaron Sorkin-penned show debuts that Monday at 10.
NBC will stagger the debuts of many of its six new shows, the last being Tina Fey comedy 30 Rock, which premieres Oct. 11.
Following are NBC’s fall series and season premiere dates. New shows are in bold, except for ER.
SEPTEMBER 18 "Deal or No Deal" (special two-hour edition, 8-10 p.m.)
"STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP" (10-11 p.m.)
SEPTEMBER 19 "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" (9-10 p.m.)
"Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (10-11 p.m.)
SEPTEMBER 20 "The Biggest Loser" (8-10 p.m.)
"KIDNAPPED" (10-11 p.m.)
SEPTEMBER 21 "My Name Is Earl" (8-8:30 p.m.)
"The Office" (8:30-9 p.m.)
"Deal or No Deal (9-10 p.m.)
"ER" (10-11 p.m.)
SEPTEMBER 22 "Law & Order" (10-11 p.m.)
SEPTEMBER 25 "HEROES" (9-10 p.m.)
OCTOBER 3 "FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS" (8-9 p.m.)
OCTOBER 4 "TWENTY GOOD YEARS" (8-8:30 p.m. and 8:30-9 p.m.)
OCTOBER 11 "30 ROCK" (8:30-9 p.m.)
OCTOBER 20 "Crossing Jordan" (8-9 p.m.)
"Las Vegas" (9-10 p.m.)
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