In 'Army' now: Johnson joins as showrunner


Dee Johnson has come aboard Lifetime's new hit drama series "Army Wives" as an executive producer/showrunner. She also has extended her overall deal with "Wives" producer ABC Studios for another year.

Johnson is joining "Wives" full time after writing a couple of episodes for the show's first season. She is taking over showrunning duties from Jeff Melvoin.

Johnson is the third showrunner on "Wives," which ABC Studios co-produces with the Mark Gordon Co. Samantha Corbin-Miller was named showrunner/executive producer in December and was replaced by Melvoin in March.

Third time seems to be the charm for Johnson. She also was the third showrunner on ABC's 2005-06 series "Commander in Chief" -- also from ABC Studios (then Touchstone Television) -- following the departures of creator Rod Lurie and his successor, Steven Bochco.

"Wives" recently was picked up for a second season with an 18-episode order. The series, which features an ensemble cast that includes Kim Delaney and Catherine Bell, has performed consistently in the ratings since its June 3 premiere, which averaged 3.5 million total viewers -- the most ever for a Lifetime series bow. "Wives" airs at 10 p.m. Sundays.

Johnson, who also has served in various producing capacities on "Profiler," "ER" and "Melrose Place," is repped by CAA and attorney Jamie Mandelbaum.