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By Nellie Andreeva
The CW may be the latest network to make a bold move onThursday.
After days of rumblings, the CW is said to have settled on launching the hotnew drama “Vampire Diaries” Thursday 8 p.m., paired with”Supernatural.” “Vampire Diaries” would replace the staple in thetime slot, departing veteran “Smallville,” whose final ninth seasonwould air on Friday, probably at 8 p.m.
The network is set to unveil its fall schedule Thursday in NewYork.
“Vampire Diaries,” about a girl in a love triangle with two vampirebrothers, is envisioned as a new tentpole series for Thursday nightwhere the network already has built-in sci-fi audience with”Smallville” and “Supernatural.”
Meanwhile, “Melrose Place” will almost certainly be paired with”90210,” repeating the launch pattern for the original “MelrosePlace,” which followed “Beverly Hills, 90210” on Fox in fall1992.
With its setting — a co-ed residence of young models — new drama”Beautiful Life” is a perfect scripted companion for “America’sNext Top Model” and is expected to launch after the hit realityseries on Wednesday.
CW’s solidly-rated Monday lineup of “Gossip Girl” and “One TreeHill” is expected to stay intact.
All major networks are taking swings on Thursday night, the mostlucrative night on television.
Fox and CBS are moving promising freshmen “Fringe” and “TheMentalist” to Thursday at 9 p.m. and 10 p.m., respectively.
ABC is slotting newcomer “Flash Forward” at 8 p.m. where the showbased on a sci-fi novel may have some audience overlap with”Vampire Diaries.”
And, after several weeks of “SNL” specials, NBC will put freshmancomedy “Community” in the 8-8:30 p.m. half-hour on Thursday.
As for CW’s new crop of shows, the network should have no problempromoting them.
“Vampire Diaries” is based on an established book franchise andwill certainly tap into the “Twilight” phenomenon.
Meanwhile, both “Melrose” and “Life” have popular stars — MischaBarton and Elle MacPherson (“Life”) and Ashlee Simpson-Wentz(“Melrose”) — to help hype the shows.
And “Life” is exec produced by Twitter king Ashton Kutcher, who cantalk up the series to his more than 1 million followers.
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