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Court TV Splits Itself

3/29/2005 8:26 AM Eastern

Court TV said Tuesday that it is dividing itself in two in order to reflect its contrasting daytime and evening fare.

The network said it has renamed its daytime schedule “Court TV News” and its primetime offerings “Court TV Seriously Entertaining.”

“This is the next logical step in our evolution as the brand leader in coverage of all aspects of our system of justice,” Court TV president and chief operating officer Art Bell said in a prepared statement.

“Moreover, it recognizes the different interests and needs of our viewers and advertisers in further delineating our daytime schedule under the moniker Court TV News and our evening schedule of compelling investigation-related series and documentaries, important award-winning issue-related movies and reality-based fare aimed at our growing younger demographic, all under the tag line Court TV Seriously Entertaining,” he added.

Court TV also unveiled its fall primetime lineup.

The network’s new series are:

L.A. Forensics (working title), a nonfiction series that takes viewers inside the real case files of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Scientific Investigation Division.

Under Investigation, in which Court TV joins forces with NBC News to take a closer look at the most talked about unsolved cases from today’s headlines, hosted and narrated by NBC News anchor and correspondent John Seigenthaler.

Five Days, a nonfiction series examiningan elite group of the best investigative talent from dozens of local, state and federal agencies known as the Major Case Squad, which operates with the simple mission of solving crimes within five days.

• Reality series Get Me Bruce Cutler!, in which the famous defense attorney goes to small-town America to argue cases such as small-time robberies and moving violations.

• Reality series Las Vegas Law (a.k.a. Bucky Buchanan), which follows “Sin City” attorney Buchanan as he represents various people, from murder suspects to prostitutes to tourists in trouble.

• Reality series High Stakes with Ben Mezrich, in which the best-selling author delves into the underground world of young overachieving millionaires and wanna-bes.

• Reality series Parco, PI, which Court TV described as “Arrested Development meets Growing Up Gotti,” about “a functioning, dysfunctional family of New York City private eyes.”

• Reality series CasinoTakedown, which follows former card-counters and con men as they test casino security from the inside out.

• Limited series The Smoking Gun, a televised version of the Web site (www.thesmokinggun.com), which includes segments on the most scandalous celebrity legal snafus, as well as hard-to-believe cases from around the country.

As far as new documentaries and specials, the network’s fall slate will include:

Home of the Brave, a documentary about Viola Liuzzo, who joined thousands in Selma, Ala., for the march on Montgomery, led by Martin Luther King Jr. in 1965, and was shot and killed by a car full of Klansmen while on the way home, which was followed by a massive FBI cover-up.

Unknown White Male, about a man with a British accent who arrives at the end of a subway line in Brooklyn disoriented, wearing strange clothes, with no idea of how he got there and absolutely no memory of anything.

• Ongoing nonfiction series Court TV/Sundance Channel Project, four half-hour documentaries on the subject of discrimination and bias.

• Nonfiction series Unexpected Heroes, a series of one-hour specials about ordinary people rising to the occasion under extraordinary circumstances.

• Documentary The Real Rocky Horror, the story of a real-life murder in the French Quarter of New Orleans with the only clues leading to a group who are obsessed with 1970s cult film The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

September