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September 2, 2015


When Shows Recast: A History of Disappeared and Replacement Sitcom Characters

by Ryan Simmons, posted Mar 9th 2011 4:00PM

Well, it finally happened. On Monday, Warner Brothers decided they'd had enough and sacked Charlie Sheen from 'Two and a Half Men.'

While Sheen is now free to move on and continue "winning" or doing whatever else an unemployed warlock does, the fate of the show itself remains in limbo. How can a popular sitcom survive without such a major character? We figure the show's producers and writers have three options: write him out of the show, bring in another actor to assume Sheen's role, or replace the character altogether.

Luckily, there's a storied precedent for this kind of situation. We've pulled together a list of nine other shows, from 'Bewitched' to 'Roseanne,' that also had to use one of these three tactics. Guess what? They all ended up just fine.

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J-Lo nixes idea of replacing Paula on Idol

by Allison Waldman, posted Jul 27th 2009 7:03PM
jennifer_lopez_halterFile this one under the header, "Thanks but no thanks." According to reps for J-Lo, Jennifer Lopez will not replace Paula Abdul on American Idol. Apparently, there's a hot rumor out there that Jennifer had some interest in taking over in light of the lack of progress in Paula's negotiations with the producers for her return.

This sounds like a bunch of malarchy. Jennifer Lopez has no need to appear on American Idol as a judge. She's got a thriving career -- something Abdul did not have when she got the Idol gig in 2002. For J-Lo to plunk herself on American Idol would likely impede her career, although it would give her lots of visibility.

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Temporary Tim Russert replacement named

by Kristin Sample, posted Jun 22nd 2008 6:23PM
Tom BrokawThere's been speculation about who will replace Tim Russert on NBC's Meet the Press. David Gregory, Keith Olbermann, Chris Matthews and Katie Couric were a few of the rumored possibilities. Jovie Baclayon of E! Online reports that Tom Brokaw will be temporarily replacing the tragically-lost news anchor. NBC announced today that the former Nightly News anchor and South Dakota native would take over moderating responsibilities on Sunday mornings. He will guide discussions through the November presidential elections.

Steve Capus, NBC News President, made this statement about Brokaw's decision to step in: "To have someone of Tom's stature step up and dedicate himself to ensuring its ongoing success is not only a testament to his loyalty to Tim, but his enduring commitment to NBC News and our viewers."

After 21 years helming the program, Tom Brokaw retired from NBC Nightly News in 2004.

Tim Russert died of a heart attack last week on June 13th. He was 58.

[via Yahoo TV]

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Who's replacing Tim Russert?

by Joel Keller, posted Jun 16th 2008 12:01PM
Tim RussertI'm sure a lot of you were scratching your heads over the weekend, wondering how Tim Russert's passing merited the all-encompassing, presidential-like coverage it got, especially on his home network of NBC. He's only a reporter, right? Why the wall-to-wall coverage? Well, first of all, it seems that by all accounts, Russert was one of the most well-liked people in the news business, so the outpouring might have been a function of people mourning a friend who was taken from them too soon. But, I have another, more off-beat theory as to why NBC did a broadcast version of sitting shiva for Russert: it was because they have no idea how to replace him.

Think about it: he wasn't only the longtime moderator of Meet The Press, where he took the venerable show and rejiggered its format, making him the face of the show. He was also NBC News' Washington bureau chief and the main political voice for the network. "It's going to take four or five people to replace Tim," CBS' Bob Schieffer told The New York Times.

For now, though, the immediate question is who will replace him on Meet The Press. Speculation is already underway.

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Chip Johannessen replaces Greenwalt on Moonlight

by Varun Lella, posted Aug 2nd 2007 9:05PM
Moonlight CBSIt seems like there is plenty of drama on CBS's new vampire detective show Moonlight, and it hasn't even debuted. Just months after Angel co-creator David Greenwalt was hired to executive produce the show he left. The head honchos at CBS have tapped Dark Angel's Chip Johannessen to take the reigns from Greenwalt according to The Hollywood Reporter.

In addition to the Executive Producer difficulties, the cast of Moonlight has had more changes than Kelly Osbourne's hair color, including dropping Shannon Lucio earlier in the spring.

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If Larry King chose his successor it would be... Ryan Seacrest?

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 5th 2007 3:22PM
Larry King and Ryan SeacrestIf you think that entertainment journalists have it easy compared to their war correspondent colleagues, think again. Jacques Steinberg of The New York Times, in the process of following around Larry King for an interview, actually witnessed the ancient talk show host standing half-naked in his office, waiting to receive the dress shirt he was to wear on the air that night. So, imagine the image of King, suspenders draped over his bare chicken-wing shoulders, waiting for his shirt. I'm not sure the Times could pay me enough to witness that.

Anyway, while Steinberg was watching King dress at work and kibitz with his pals over a "healthy" breakfast (he recently had surgery to clear plaque out of an artery in his neck), he also asked King questions about retirement and who might replace him. While King feels that he'll go at least another ten years, if he were to pick someone to replace him it would be Ryan Seacrest. Yes, that Ryan Seacrest.

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Ed Bradley's colleagues find comfort in his untouched office

by Joel Keller, posted Jan 11th 2007 11:33AM
Ed BradleyAccording to Gail Shister of the Philadelphia Inquirer, the 60 Minutes office office of Ed Bradley has not been touched since the veteran reporter died of complications from leukemia in November. Staffers, including his fellow correspondents, have been going into the office to find comfort and reflect on Bradley's unexpected death. ""It feels like he's still here. In some ways, it almost feels like he's off shooting a story," Steve Kroft tells Shister.

The article also speculates on who eventually might take Bradley's spot on the full-time correspondents' roster starting next season. Believe it or not, the last full-timer to come aboard the mothership (not the 60 II edition that ended a couple of years ago) was Leslie Stahl... in 1991.

[via Mediabistro]

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Dave Price to take over for Bob Barker?

by Joel Keller, posted Nov 2nd 2006 3:46PM
Dave PriceEver since The Price is Right's Bob Barker announced his retirement, game show fans have been bandying about names of possible replacements. The names most commonly mentioned are Todd Newton, who hosts the TPiR road show, Marc Summers of FoodTV's Unwrapped (and the late, lamented Nick game show Double Dare), and Rich Fields, the show's current announcer. But an unexpected name is coming out of left field, and may be a strong contender: Dave Price.

The Early Show's weatherman and all-around goofball recently signed a new deal with CBS, and according to an article in the New York Daily News, that contract also calls for him to do "entertainment-based projects" for the network. In addition, the story reports that he was at the offices of TPiR producer Fremantle Media doing a mock run-through of the show for a small audience (who responded to a Craigslist ad, for crissakes). CBS is saying that it's too early to even talk about a replacement for Barker.

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Katie Couric leaving Today, just not today

by Ryan j Budke, posted Apr 5th 2006 9:47AM
tv squad; katie couricKatie Couric announced this morning that she is indeed going to be leaving the Today show at the end of May; she'll be moving on to the news division at CBS (their Evening News and 60 Minutes primarily). It was an odd announcement, because as she said herself, she's not leaving right this moment, and it's pretty much the worst kept secret in America. Though this was a non-announcement, it was still a little emotional, and you can tell that no matter what's gone on behind the scenes throughout the years at NBC in the morning, they are a close-knit crew. There's going to be some fun stuff coming up as they look back over Katie's career.

So now the big question is "who will replace Katie?" The front runner in the rumor-mill is Meredith Vieira. I've never really seen her on anything besides Who Wants To Be A Millionaire (yes I know she's on The View, but honestly I've just never seen it.) What do you guys think? Would Meredith be any good? She certainly has some big shoes to fill from Katherine Katie Couric.

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