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TNT's `Memphis Beat' Draws 4.3 Million Viewers

TNT kicked off its Tuesday night lineup of summer originals in fine fashion as its newest original drama series Memphis Beat garnered 4.3 million viewers.
The series, starring Jason Lee as a quirky Memphis detective, also averaged 1.4 million adults 18-49 and 1.7 million adults 25-54, said the network.

Memphis Beat's lead-in, sophomore drama series HawthoRNe, drew 3.4 million viewers in its season premiere. HawthoRNe, which stars Jada Pinkett Smith as a caring but no-nonsense Chief Nursing Officer at fictitious Richmond Trinity Hospital, outdelivered its first season average of 3.3 million viewers but fell just short of the 3.8 million viewers the show generated for its series premiere last June.

The two series premieres follow the June 20 third season debut of the Timothy Hutton-starrer Leverage, which averaged 3.1 million viewers - below the 4.1 million viewer average of the action-drama series' second season.
"Tuesday looks to be a strong night for TNT, anchored by two exceptional, engaging, character-driven dramas," said Michael Wright, executive vice president and head of programming for TNT, TBS and Turner Classic Movies (TCM) in a statement. "The success of Sunday's Leverage and Tuesday's HawthoRNe and Memphis Beat have set the stage for another outstanding summer on TNT."

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.