'Loser,' 'D-List' get more love


Two unscripted series have been picked up for another cycle by NBC Universal networks.

NBC has ordered a fourth season of reality competition series "The Biggest Loser," while Bravo is bringing "Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List" back for a third season.

On the scheduling side, the CW has set the season-premiere date of the reality show "Beauty and the Geek," while A&E Network and Lifetime Television have firmed up the debut dates for their respective off-net acquisitions, "The Sopranos" and "Grey's Anatomy."

"Loser" has faced stiff competition in the Wednesday 9 p.m. slot this season, running against ABC's "Lost" and CBS' "Criminal Minds." In its eight weeks to date, "Loser" has averaged 7.4 million viewers and a 3.1 rating/8 share in adults 18-49, improving NBC's performance in the hour 40% over last year, according to Nielsen Media Research data.

" 'The Biggest Loser' is a valuable franchise and proven competitor in a very challenging time period," NBC Entertainment president Kevin Reilly said.

Hosted by Caroline Rhea, the weight-loss show is heading to its live, two-hour season finale Dec. 13.

"Loser," from Reveille Llc., 25/7 Prods. and 3 Ball Prods., is exec produced by Ben Silverman, Dave Broome, JD Roth, Todd A. Nelson and Mark Koops.

Bravo has ordered six new episodes of Griffin's "D-List" to air next year. The one-hour series, which chronicles the comedian's daily adventures, was nominated for an Emmy this year.

"Kathy's unique style of comedy is brilliantly showcased with this series," Bravo executive vp programming and production Frances Berwick said.

"D-List" is produced by Picture This Prods. with Marcia Mule, Brian Scott, Lisa M. Tucker and Griffin exec producing.

The CW's "Beauty" will return for its third installment with a special two-hour premiere from 8-10 p.m. Jan. 3. Starting Jan. 10, the show' will air in its regular 8 p.m. Wednesday period — taking over the "America's Next Top Model" slot — with encore telecasts airing from 9-10 p.m. Sundays.

"Beauty" hails from fox21, Katalyst Films and 3 Ball Prods.

A&E said Tuesday that "The Sopranos" will debut at 9 p.m. Jan. 10, on the eight-year anniversary of the initial series launch on HBO.

Beginning with the first episode of Season 1, A&E will air "Sopranos" with back-to-back episodes every Wednesday at 9 p.m. The episodes will be edited for content but not for time, meaning that with commercials, the two episodes will run longer than two hours.

"Sopranos" is an HBO/Brad Grey TV production.

Meanwhile, Lifetime is planning to debut the medical drama "Grey's" on Jan. 7. The network will air episodes of the show at 11 p.m. Sundays, starting with the first season. (Lifetime can begin stripping the series in fall 2009.)

"Grey's" is produced by Touchstone TV and syndicated by Buena Vista TV.