UPN Spears Britney

Hit me baby one more time with a Viacom Inc.-backed reality show about a hot young blond singer and her new husband.

Newlyweds Britney Spears and husband Kevin Federline, following in the footsteps of Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey on MTV's Newlyweds, have signed up for a six-episode UPN series for broadcast "later this season."

A UPN spokesman had not returned a call at press time, but if "later this season" means "this season," which is over at the end of May, the show would have to start almost immediately. Since it sounds like primarily a clip show, that could indeed mean a May sweeps run.

Arguably delaying it too long might dampen the burning interest in their enduring love story.

UPN has had success with reality, with America's Top Model its top performer over the past couple of years.

The Spears-Federline series (our working title since UPN did not provide one) will include home videos of their whirlwind courtship and marriage, plus new footage produced by UPN with commentary from the couple that will take viewers on the magical tour of the mystery of love among the young and rich and famous (well, at least half-famous).

MTV or VH1 or both will get to repeat the shows after their UPN broadcast. In fact, to help drive some of those young MTV viewers to UPN, the MTV channels will run a marathon of the first five episodes to promote UPN's broadcast of the finale.

Calling the show "a documentation of love," Spears gushed in a release: "I am now going to be expressing my personal life through art.  This series will show us falling in love and all the adventures that went on overseas during the European leg of my Onyx Hotel tour."

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.