12:46pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
TLC Delays 'Best Funeral Ever' in Wake of School Shootings
TLC has delayed its upcoming Best Funeral Ever due to sensitivities surrounding the recent school shootings in Newtown, Conn.
The hourlong special, which revolves around John Beckwith Jr. and his staff of Golden Gate Funeral Home who organize unique funerals including a Christmas, State Fair and doo-wop-themed services, was slated to air Dec. 27 but instead has been pushed to Jan. 6, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Friday's killing spree at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Conn., left 28 people — including gunman Adam Lanza, 20, and his mother — dead. Twenty first-grade students were among the victims in Lanza's attack before he turned the gun on himself.
Funerals for the youngsters were due to begin Monday as relatives began to claim the bodies of the deceased, according to the New York Times.
TLC's Best Funeral Ever special will serve as a back-door pilot, meaning if it is successful it could lead to a series order. The Jan. 6 premiere will air after Here Comes Honey Boo Boo's Halloween special at 9 p.m.
The decision to shift the special comes after broadcast and cable networks have altered their programming in the wake of the shooting rampage. Sunday's Homeland season finale featured an additional disclaimer warning viewers about "disturbing" content. Fox pulled several originals from its Sunday night animated block and Syfy on Friday opted not to air a new episode of Haven as it centered on violence at a high school. Saturday Night Live opened its Christmas episode with a children's choir singing "Silent Night."
In addition, movie studio Paramount delayed Tom Cruise's Jack Reacher premiere in Pittsburgh and canceled a Lincoln Center fundraiser screening, while Fox canceled a Parental Guidance post-screening party.