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TNT Announces 'Closer' Spin-off Starring Mary McDonnell, New Programming Slate

by Chris Harnick, posted May 18th 2011 11:00AM
Mary McDonnellMary McDonnell will star in 'Major Crimes,' a new spinoff from TNT's wildly successful police drama 'The Closer.' Can we get a "frak yeah," 'Battlestar Galactica' fans?

'Major Crimes' will launch after 'The Closer' wraps its final season with 15 episodes in 2011 and six during the summer of 2012, the network announced this morning. TNT also introduced several new projects, such as 'The TNT Tuesday Night Mystery' series, at its Upfront presentation.

'The TNT Tuesday Night Mystery' -- a working title -- will showcase six crime dramas, including both true crime and fiction mysteries. As part of the new movie block, TNT is working on an adaptation of Scott Turow's novel 'Innocent,' Richard North Patterson's 'Silent Witness,' Sandra Brown's 'Ricochet,' Lisa Gardner's 'Hide,' 'April Smith's 'Good Morning, Killer' and Mary and Carol Higgins Clark's 'Deck the Halls.'

Over on TBS, the network officially announced 'The Wedding Band,' a new series starring 'Lost' veteran Harold Perrineau and 'Beverly Hills, 90210' grad Brian Austin Green. Melora Hardin, Jan on 'The Office,' also stars.

"We understand that exceptional programming comes from working with exceptional talent," Michael Wright, executive vice president and head of programming at TNT, TBS and TCM, said in a statement. "We hire the best actors, actresses, writers, producers and directors in the business, give them a clear creative target and then try to get out of their way and let them make terrific television."

TNT also announced a series of new scripted and unscripted programming in development. Here's how TNT describes them:

Untitled Kip Koenig/John Wells Productions Project -- Set against the backdrop of the Pacific Northwest, this drama follows a family of cops who uncover the mystical and often crime-ridden world of a small town where things aren't as they appear.

'Scent of the Missing' -- A search-and-rescue officer braves the harshest conditions with her best friend and partner, a Labrador retriever. Based on the book of the same name.

'Gateway' -- In a nation still healing from the Civil War, lawlessness rules the small towns of the Old West. Three brothers bound by duty, honor and self-preservation take a stand. Together, they fight to survive and thrive -- all in a small town called Gateway.

Untitled Mitch Albom Project -- Set in a Detroit radio station, this drama follows a station manager who, against his wishes, returns home to try and breathe life into his struggling city. The project comes to TNT from best-selling author and columnist Mitch Albom ('Tuesdays with Morrie').

'Enigma' -- 'Enigma' is a modern-day mystery-of-the-week in the vein of Sherlock Holmes. The project comes to TNT from CBS Television Studios and Anthony Zuiker ('CSI'), Matt Weinberg and Ed Whitmore ('Waking the Dead'), who will write the pilot script.

TBS's scripted shows in development include: 'An American Couple,' an hour comedy about a couple a suburban Illinois couple who decide to head down the altar; a comedy spoof of cop shows from 'Terriers' veteran Phoef Sutton; and 'Men at Work,' a half-hour series about a man who reenters single life after he finds out his girlfriend was cheating on him.

The networks also have a full slate of unscripted programming. More on that here.

Tell us: Are you looking forward to the new programming on TNT and TBS?

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Brittney Klatte

I give it 3 episodes...

June 24 2011 at 9:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Wild Wayne

McDowell cannot act her way out of a wet paper bag. This series has failure written all over it. Kyra is good and does a good job Mary is not up to her standards.

May 19 2011 at 6:06 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dnetru5

Love the "Closer"......all good things must end!
Must say new shows sound interesting....looking forward to them. Glad you're producing new things for us, NBC, CBS, AND ABC are sadly inadequate in that department.

May 19 2011 at 1:25 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
redlittled328

I am so sad to hear about the FINAL season of the Closer. I LOVE that show. I thought it would go on for a long, long time. I am sad.

May 19 2011 at 12:38 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
T Exan

So the last season of the Closer will be the only full season with 21 episodes? I swear if there was anything else on the nights that 'The Closer' came on I would watch it but as nothing worth watching comes on I watch the show. Most series shows have seasons of 20 plus episodes but TNT shows have seasons in the single digits which makes it downright irritating to watch them sometimes. One 'season' I think it was the third of 'The Closer' was only nine episodes. Well lets hope that they don't make the same mistakes with Mary McDonnell's show 'Major Crimes' that they did with 'The Closer' with it on Tuesday night it will be going up against NCIS and maybe V (if Disney pulls thier head out of thier ass) and given the choice of watching a show that might only run in a single diget season or a show like NCIS that has full 21 plus episode seasons I'll chose the full season show without a second thought. TNT needs to reconsider thier 'reality' TV idea we all know that all TV shows are scripted every thing is pretty much planned and anything that isn't is edited out, TV is FAKE they need to maintain that distinction otherwise they will find themselfs in trutv hell spiralling in to the abys.

May 19 2011 at 12:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jon!

More white-washing shows again. What else is new.

May 18 2011 at 11:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
gimpgirl52

keep it up TNT, you have chosen to put shows on your channel that are fresh and interesting.Not the same old stuff! I really do appreciate the effort, I look forward to the show with Mary McDonnell. I appreciate TNT's shows with women as the stars,but there is nothing wrong with Memphis Beat either. Thanks for all your hard work and great choices.

May 18 2011 at 11:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
peechzncreme

I hate that they are ending "The Closer", it is a great show. And as for a show with McDonnell's Capt. Rader I wont be watching it. I couldn't stand her when she was on "The Closer". But I love Brenda and her crew. It seems they always shut down the really good shows. To bad!
Margaret

May 18 2011 at 11:13 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
kaysings

I found McDonnell's Capt. Rader extremely annoying, so I doubt that I'll bother with the spinoff. But I don't blame TNT in the least for trying this. The Closer has been a huge cash cow and I'd have been surprised if TNT hadn't come up with something to try to continue that.

May 18 2011 at 10:35 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
phines41

Hey TNT how about picking up "Human Target" since FOX has gone brain dead and cancelled it?

May 18 2011 at 10:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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