1:30pm PT by Kate Stanhope
Freeform Enters Late-Night With Iliza Shlesinger Talk Show
Freeform is officially entering the late-night arena.
The Disney-owned cable network has greenlighted a weekly late-night talk show fronted by comedian Iliza Shlesinger.
The half-hour entry, titled Truth & Iliza, will touch on societal observations and sketches fueled by Shlesinger's opinions. The format will also include in-studio celebrity guests and expert interviews. Each episode will be centered on a themed question which Shlesinger will try to answer employing audience interaction, field pieces, commentary and jokes. Sociopolitical issues of the day will play a key role, giving viewers a forum to discuss a wife variety of topics.
So far, Freeform has ordered six episodes, which are set to air weekly on Tuesdays beginning May 2 at 10:02 p.m. ET/PT.
Shlesinger will executive produce with Kim Gamble (The Colbert Report) along with Jon Thoday, Richard Allen-Turner, David Martin and Kara Baker from Avalon Television (Last Week Tonight With John Oliver).
“At Freeform, we are committed to introducing culturally important narratives and voices to our viewers,” Freeform executive vp programming and development Karey Burke said Tuesday in a statement. “Iliza is one of those voices and we can’t wait to bring her fearless, yet brilliantly funny social commentary and wit to our audience.”
The late-night show extends parent company ABC's relationship with Shlesinger. She also stars in the scripted comedy series Forever 31 for the ABC app that has been renewed for a second season. The stand-up veteran also has headlined a Netflix comedy special, Confirmed Kills, and Shlesinger will release her first book, Girl Logic, through Weinstein Books this fall. She is repped by APA, Avalon Entertainment and Bloom Hergott.
“I'm so grateful to Freeform for inviting me to create a show that occupies a space between social commentary, politics, pop culture and my specific brand of comedy and feminism” said Shlesinger. “This show will inform, entertain, and it’s a great excuse to get a spray tan.”
Freeform is the latest network to enter the late-night fray. Netflix recently launched its first talk show, Chelsea, headlined by longtime E! host Chelsea Handler. However, the series will pull back from producing three half-hour shows a week to one weekly hourlong show when it returns for season two on April 14. History launched its own weekly late-night show, Join or Die, with former Late Late Show host Craig Ferguson last year.
Truth & Iliza was first put into development at the channel in September. The programming move also comes a little more than a year into Freeform's brand revamp. Formerly known as ABC Family, the network has shifted its focus to "becomers" and twentysomethings and away from family programming like The Fosters and Switched at Birth, the latter which wraps later this month. Upcoming series include Bella Thorne's Famous In Love, the magazine-set series The Bold Type and Marvel's Cloak and Dagger.