Complete Coverage: 2017 TCA Summer Press Tour
The CW will again air a four-series crossover in November, although this year it will run two nights instead of four, said The CW president Mark Pedowitz at the Television Critics Association summer press tour on Wednesday.
“Last year’s crossover was the most successful week, I believe, in The CW’s history in terms of ratings,” said Pedowitz.
On Monday, Nov. 27, Supergirl and Arrow will broadcast crossover episodes and then on Tuesday, Nov. 28, The Flash and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow will cross.
Last year, The CW tried the stunt for the first time with new shows Supergirl and Legends of Tomorrow joining Arrow and The Flash.
Also launching this fall is a remake of Dynasty, from the creative team behind such shows as Gossip Girl and The O.C., and starring Grant Show, Elizabeth Gillies and Nathalie Kelley. It will be paired with Riverdale on Wednesday nights, with both shows premiering on Oct. 11.
“This show puts a new twist on a brand that Richard Shapiro did back in the 80s,” said Pedowitz. “We were losing Vampire Diaries, losing Reign, and we want to keep more women watching us.”
To that end, The CW this fall is launching Valor, which features a female special ops helicopter pilot and her squadron. Pedowitz worked on Lifetime’s ArmyWives and sees a lack of military-focused shows available on television.
“This is our third attempt to do this,” said Pedowitz. “It’s the right show for us for right now. At the end of the day, it’s a great soap on top of it being set against a military background.”
Things at The CW have become more stable since the network evolved its business model into being both a linear network as well as a multiplatform play.
“The CW has always been an outlier in broadcasting,” said Pedowitz. “The preference is to watch it live. As long as we can find the audience and aggregate them, it’s the best of all worlds for us. We understood that we had to evolve and the only way to evolve is to become a multiplatform player.”
The CW’s largest affiliate group, Tribune, is being acquired by the Sinclair Broadcast Group, but Pedowtiz doesn’t expect that to change business as usual at the network.
“In the six years I’ve done this job and prior to that, they have been great partners,” said Pedowitz. “Except for some local sports situations, they have not preempted us, and they have gone out of their way to market us on a local basis. I expect that to continue and I have no reason to expect it not to.”
Finally, Pedowitz said he isn’t planning on replacing The CW’s former head of programming, Thom Sherman, who moved to CBS in May as senior executive VP.
Said Pedowitz: “Gaye Hirsch is overseeing our scripted development. Michael Roberts is probably the best current exec in the business. Together they make a great pair. At the moment, that is where we’ll stay. We’ll let them have their shot.”
Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.
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