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NEWS IN BRIEF

ON THIS PAGE
Meet the new hunk on Charmed
Charmed back for season 6
Centennial Charmed
Four fateful years
US FHM poll results
New night for season 5
Rose vs. Alyssa
Season four delayed
WB stirs flap over CPMs
Greg Vaughan arrested for drink-driving
Season 4 start date
The WB addresses Charmed
Which witch? - Rose McGowan check-list
Cast "preferred McGowan over Richards"
Videos on their way?
Rose McGowan feeling Charmed
Thiessen "no" to Charmed
McGowan or Richards may be Charmed
The WB's Faces 2001
US FHM Sexiest Women poll
More on JLH "no"
JLH turns down the power of three
TNT gets Charmed
Fourth sister?
Charmed to run on TNT?
Look Who's Barking featured music
WB releases new season details

Previous news in brief

MEET THE NEW HUNK ON CHARMED
ADDED: 28.03.03

"A good opportunity at the right time." That's how Eric Dane sums up his four-episode stint on Charmed. The 30-year-old Gideon's Crossing alum joins the cast on Sunday as Jason Dean, the new owner of the Bay Mirror newspaper and, more importantly, a love interest for Phoebe.

"We have somewhat of a combative start," Dane explains to TV Guide Online, "but there's chemistry and it develops into a relationship. It's all fun and games until someone gets hurt, and then I leave. They're not killing me though - the door is left open, just in case."

Spoilers for UK viewers follow

As fans no doubt realise, this relationship is a big step for Phoebe, who has been out of the dating loop since Cole met his end in the show's 100th episode. Being the new guy in town is never easy, but Dane claims he hasn't been feeling any pressure. "That's probably because I had no idea about [McMahon]," he laughs. "Nobody told me I was replacing anyone."

Unlike his supernatural predecessor, Jason is exactly what he appears to be. "He's mortal, so I didn't have to learn any weird dialogue," notes the actor. "I did walk into Phoebe's house once, and I had these nymphs dancing around my head. But that was as surreal as it got for me."

While his character may not have any cool powers, Dane did get to enjoy the magical experience of smooching Alyssa Milano. "It's really great to kiss somebody who you geniunely get along with," he raves. "I think she's a really good person and she's ridiculously attractive. What's it like? It's like it's not that bad to show up at the office."

CHARMED BACK FOR SEASON 6
ADDED: 28.02.03

According to a post from Holly Marie Combs herself on the Safesearching message boards Charmed has received an official pickup for next season. BACK TO THE TOP

CENTENNIAL CHARMED
ADDED: 13.12.02

Anyone's been counting will know that the twelfth episode of season five is Charmed's 100th. Appropriately titled Centennial Charmed it airs on The WB on 19 January 2003.

To mark the occasion, The Hollywood Reporter, the entertainment industry's premier trade publication publishing a special issue devoted to behind-the-scenes looks at Charmed.

Publication date is 16 January, but you can order a copy here ($5.50 in the US, $10 outside).

Thanks to Krishanti Wahla for the pic on the right. BACK TO THE TOP

FOUR FATEFUL YEARS
ADDED: 11.07.02. SOURCE: ST-LOUIS POST-DISPATCH

For a TV series, turning 4 years old is not just a milestone, it's a miracle.

The vast majority of shows don't make it through four seasons. Most, in fact, don't even last the first year. Of the 30 network series that made debuts in the fall of 1998 (remember Holding the Baby and Maggie Winters?) and thus mark their 4th birthdays this fall, only four are still around.

They couldn't be more different from one another, but the four have something in common. They're well on the way to becoming profitable for their makers.

After completing four seasons and getting ready to enter the fifth, a show has typically amassed 88 episodes, the minimum needed for syndication. In syndication, studios sell reruns of the show directly to TV stations, cable networks or abroad, bringing in big bucks - as much as $2 million an episode for a hit comedy.

This fall's multimillion-dollar syndication baby is NBC's Will & Grace, the most popular of the four shows about to turn 4. The two other sitcoms on the list, CBS' King of Queens and Fox's That 70s Show, will wait another season before jumping onto the syndication gravy train in fall 2003; the only drama turning 4, the WB's Charmed, is already airing in repeats on TNT cable.

But unless you're a studio, profit-and-loss ledgers aren't particularly interesting. For viewers, a series' 4th birthday marks a different milestone, the make-or-break kind.

In the fifth season, some shows seem to run out of steam, exhausting all possible story lines. Consider Ally McBeal, which turned 4 last fall still going fairly strong on Fox but self-destructed during a fifth season that had Ally do every desperate thing but run away to join the circus. Felicity, too, crashed and burned in its fifth season, winding up its run so short of plots that some actually had to be recycled. (Those two shows, cancelled this spring, were the only two survivors of the 31 new entries in the fall of 1997.)

By contrast, a series that makes it through the fifth season might well run indefinitely. Think Frasier, ER and NYPD Blue.

The 4th-birthday milestone, then, is a good time to look back at the four shows entering their fifth seasons this fall and see how they pass the test of time.

The article then proceeds to take a look at the four series, here's what it has to say about Charmed:

Charmed (7pm Sundays on Channel 11)

Debuted: Oct. 7, 1998

Premise: Three sisters learn that they are witches who can fight evil if they work together (i.e. "The Power of Three").

Stars: Shannen Doherty (now departed), Alyssa Milano, Holly Marie Combs, Rose McGowan (new in fall 2001).

Ranking for 2001-02 season: no. 129.

Average number of viewers: Just under 3 million

Why it's still on: Ratings mean less on the WB, which isn't seen in the entire country. And Charmed (with 47 Internet fan sites) brings in good buzz and viewership that fits the network's target: young women.

I said then: "Well done and remarkably involving. Grade: B."

I say now: The complex plot thread isn't easy to untangle these days. But Charmed has survived the transition among sisters, losing none of its spunk in the process.

BACK TO THE TOP

US FHM POLL RESULTS
ADDED: 16.06.02

All three of Charmed's leads were placed in the US edition of FHM's 100 Sexiest Women poll:

65 ROSE McGOWNA (last year: 57)
Witchy woman

The uninhibited Rose remains well aware of her shadowy reputation, admitting, "Had I lived back in Salem, I would have been burned at the stake." Her role on The WB's Charmed reminds us how sublimely sexy the dark side can be.

62 HOLLY MARIE COMBS (new entry)
Charming

There was a time not long ago when the job titles "best boy", "gaffer" and "key grip" provided unintentional comedy during movie credits. Now being a "key grip" - particularly on the set of The WB's Charmed - apparently gets you dates with dashing Holly Marie.

4 ALYSSA MILANO (last year: 4)
Phone babe

AT&T execs must have sniffed a lot of Sharpies before hiring Carrot Top as the spokesman for 1-800-CALL-ATT. Pitting him against 1-800-COLLECT's Eva Savalot created a marketing mismatch. He can't pull off the skin-tight leather dress the way Alyssa does. UK POLL DETAILS / BACK TO THE TOP

NEW NIGHT FOR SEASON 5
ADDED: 13.05.02

Charmed will be on the move again when The WB unveil's its 2002-03 schedule tomorrow, with a switch to Sunday nights at 8pm.

The switch will allow The WB to launch a night of comedies on Thursdays, and will see the series sandwiched between repeats of the first two seasons of Gilmore Girls (7.00/6.00c) and Angel (9.00/8.00c). BACK TO THE TOP

ROSE VS. ALYSSA

05.11.01 - No, not another on-set argument, but TV Guide's You Sexy Thing feature has put Rose McGowan head-to-head with Alyssa Milano.

So, to check out the pics and vote for one of the girls (Alyssa is winning by about 5:1 at the time of writing), click hereBACK TO THE TOP

SEASON FOUR DELAYED

18.09.01 - In the light of last week's tragic events in New York and Washington, The WB has announced some changes to the roll-out of its new season schedule.

Season four of Charmed will now debut on Thursday 4 October at 8pm ET, with a two-hour episode.  BACK TO THE TOP

WB STIRS FLAP OVER CPMS

02.09.01 - Are viewers who watched Charmed on The WB more valuable to advertisers than the viewers who will watch it this fall on TNT?

It is a watershed question to be addressed as The WB tries to strike deals with advertisers to run the same national commercials in Charmed on The WB as when it's repurposed later in the week on TNT.

Not only is The WB asking advertisers to pay the same cost per thousand for the show on both The WB and TNT, it also wants to cume the ratings of both runs.  That would allow The WB to meet the rating guarantees it has promised for Charmed by counting viewers who tune into the show on TNT later in the week as well.

This fall, each new episode of Charmed will air first at 9pm on Thursdays on The WB.  Five days later, the same episode will air at 10pm on TNT.  "As of now, that's all it's going to be," said Jed Petrick, president and chief operating officer, The WB.

"I cannot believe a major agency will buy into this," said one senior negotiator at a major buying agency who has been approached about the plan.  "CPMs on cable, on average, are about half that of broadcast network.  Why in the world do they think that in one fell swoop we'd all of a sudden give cable parity?  It just won't happen."

"Prime time is prime time," Mr. Petrick said, summarising the argument The WB is making.  He also said the 18 to 34 demographic, to which Charmed appeals, is tough to reach.  "There is demand against a short-supply demographic," he said.

"Advertisers have specific flighting requirements," Mr. Petrick said.  "So we would take the Tuesday [TNT] airing, which is Episode 1, and the Thursday, [which] would be the first run on The WB, which is Episode 2, and the ratings for those two shows would be cumed.  And one advertiser's commercials would run both nights.  If it's in position 1-A on Tuesday night in Episode 1, which is the broadcast...it would also run in position 1-A the following Thursday night, which is Episode 2."

Agency buyers say there is a difference in the nature of the cable and broadcast audiences, broadly speaking, and it is because of that difference that The WB proposal is a "nonstarter," as one senior buyer put it.  Like the other senior agency buyers contacted for this story, this buyer would speak only on the condition of anonymity.

"They have no given us a proposal on how they are going to adjust their pricing," said a second senior buyer, who was approached with The WB's general proposition.  "But I will tell you that they are going to have a very difficult time getting buyers to pay for the TNT impressions at The WB CPMs."

Said a third senior buyer, "One of the reasons network costs more than cable is because it's giving you broad immediate reach, whereas cable builds its reach differently.  Cable is more of a frequency medium than a reach medium."

This buyer, who was familiar with the proposal but had not been approached about it, "wouldn't accept it," but speculated that The WB would "get somewhere" with other agencies, though not to CPM parity for the two runs.  "Some people may say OK to it, but I'd be hard-pressed to say why they would."

This buyer observed that sellers often "just want to look at the eyeballs, but...there's likely to be some duplication between the two audiences, and for some brands that's OK, and for some that isn't.  It's not a one-size-fits-all kind of thing."

Informed of this contention, Mr. Petrick said the duplication between the two audiences is "almost nonexistent...about a 1 percent duplication," according to his network's research.

Mr. Petrick agreed that if the agencies accepted The WB's Charmed proposal the business would change in a number of ways, and he pointed to the fact that the broadcast networks themselves are now delivered to the vast majority of their viewers by cable.  "I don't know what's going to happen with Charmed," he said.  "We'll find out."

Charmed is a young-demo-friendly series about three hip young witches in present-day San Francisco.  This fall, actress Rose McGowan joins Alyssa Milano and Holly Marie Combs, replacing Shannen Doherty in the series, which is from executive producers Aaron Spelling and E. Duke Vincent. SOURCE:ELECTRONIC MEDIA ONLINEBACK TO THE TOP

GREG VAUGHAN ARRESTED FOR DRINK-DRIVING

01.09.01 - Another Charmed actor has been arrested for drink driving.  Last year, Shannen Doherty was the guilty party, this time it's Greg Vaughan, who played the Halliwells' neighbour Dan Gordon in season 2.

The 28-year-old actor was stopped on Thursday morning in Hollywood after being pulled over for speeding.  "He was speeding and straddling the lane," police spokeswoman Victoria Diaz said.

A breath test showed he had a blood alcohol level of 0.08, the legal threshold for making an arrest, she said.  He was booked for investigation of drunken driving and released pending a court appearance.  BACK TO THE TOP

SEASON 4 START DATE

08.08.01 - The WB has confirmed the start dates for its fall schedule.  Season 4 of Charmed, featuring the new lineup of Holly Marie Combs, Alyssa Milano and Rose McGowan, will premiere at 9pm on Thursday 27 September with a 2-hour episode.  BACK TO THE TOP

THE WB ADDRESSES CHARMED

19.07.01 - While answering questions at the Television Critics Association gathering in Los Angeles, a number of The WB's own addressed what happened regarding Shannen Doherty's exit.

The network's Jordan Levin spoke of the matter, saying, "We knew last year that there were some decisions that probably had to be made in the best interest of Aaron Spelling and his company, our company and Shannen.  And everybody came to the decision that they felt was mutually beneficial for all parties involved."

When asked if the season three finale was crafted in order to set up the entrance of a replacement for Doherty, Levin says, "We had an idea that we wanted to give ourselves some flexibility."

More specifically regarding the addition of Rose McGowan to the cast, Levin adds, "There's a history within the mythology that there could be another sister because of the [White] Lighter.  We're still sort of hammering that out, and we haven't heard the full pitch yet and how that's going to work.  But we're looking to bring in someone who could provide some conflict within the group and someone who could bring a younger audience into the show.  We feel like Rose does that for us." SOURCE: CINESCAPE ONLINE.  BACK TO THE TOP

WHICH WITCH?

01.07.01 - Rose McGowan replaces Shannen Doherty on The WB's Charmed; world braces for untold impact.

Aside from "Is Buffy dead?" (No, Vampire Slayer is just moving to UPN, which is nearly the same thing) and "Where the hell is Nyk Fry's Fluid Television?" (The brain trust at KUTV 2 cancelled it - more on this in a future Tube Town), is there a more pressing question on the minds of TV viewers than "Who's gonna replace Shannen Doherty on Charmed?"  Not on your couch-potato life.

Thne backstory: Charmed - about three good-witch sisters who, despite spending most of their time vanquishing evil demons and casting spells, still manage to look fabu and maintain a comfy lifestyle in San Francisco - has been one of The WB's top-rated shows for three years now.  Prue (Doherty) is a photographer, Phoebe (Alyssa Milano) is a college student and Piper (Holly Marie Combs) runs a nightclub...yeah, whenever there's a lull in the plot.  How these busty brunettes afford their clotheshorse habits (brassieres are the sisters' only poke-your-eye-out-obvious budget cutbacks) can only be chalked up to the supernatural.  Or undead producer Aaron Spelling, same diff.

Late this past season, rumours of heated Doherty-Milano catfights began leaking from the Charmed set.  Hardly surprising to anyone who recalls Doherty's mucho-publicised psycho-bitch blowups from her Beverly Hills, 90210 days.  But it was actually "sweet" Milano who stuck a her-or-me ultimatum Post-It to Spelling's coffin during the filming of the Doherty-directed season finale.  When he arose shortly after sunset and read it, Spelling quickly consulted The WB's website message boards (at TheWB.com, highly entertaining) to determine which of the battling babes was more popular amongst viewers.  A few clicks later, Doherty was driving away from the Paramount lot with a pink slip and possibly a 2.5 blood-alcohol level.  The show's "Power of Three" storyline was now seriously out of whack.

Just as with 90210, it was only a matter of time before Spelling coughed up a replacement for Doherty, among other things.  Ironically, 90210's Tiffani-Amber Theissen was approached, as were Jennifer Love Hewitt (Party of Five) and Denise Richards (Wild Things).  None of them wanted the gig, fortunately.  Theissen's big ol' chipmunk face crowds the TV screen, and nebulous talents Hewitt and Richards couldn't act their way out of a soft-core faux-lesbian thriller, as evidenced in Wild Things...What?  It was Hewitt's PO5 costar Neve Campbell "emoting" with Richards in that movie?  It's not like I've watched it several dozen timies with the VCR's freeze-frame button jammed or anything...

Focus, back on topic: The Only TV Column That MattersTM is suspicious yet mildly relieved to report that the new Charmed sister is none other than film starlet Rose McGowan, last seen by hundreds of people in the box-office bomb Monkeybone, her follow-up to Ready to Rumble and Jawbreaker, seen by even fewer.  Unless you count a role in the first Scream movie.  The WB isn't going to be a huge step back for her career.

Still not ringing any bells?  McGowan's moment of infamy came when she showed up at the 1998 MTV Awards on the scrawny arm of then-fiancé Marilyn Manson, wearing little more than a black basketball net and heels.  These were the pre-Lil' Kim and J-Lo days, mind you - McGowan was a trailblazer for award-show overexposure.

Too bad she's still only really known for that and her recurring typecast as a smoldering hell-skank, because she showed some serious acting chops in the obscure indie-flicks The Last Stop, Southie and Lewis & Clark & George.  All three are readily available at your local video shop alongside her two (!) Pauly Shore movies (Encino Man and Bio-Dome), as well as two of the absolute worst indie-craploads ever produced (overrated Gregg Araki's Doom Generation and Nowhere).  McGowan's may be a textbook "uneven film career", but it's still no match for Milano's or Combs' (Embrace of the Vampire and Dr. Giggles, anyone?)

Black hair, check.  Pouty, lips, check.  Aversion to bras, check.  Firm belief that Aaron Spelling won't crumble to dust upon their first handshake, well, she'll work on it.  McGowan will join Charmed as the younger sister no one knew existed (kinda like Buffy's Dawn - yes, I know waaay too much WB information) after the untimely death of Prue, according to completely unverifiable Internet news sources.  Once in print here, however, it's gospel.

With the Power of Three restored, I'd like the first order of business to be the cosmic annihilation of the evil force known as Gregg Araki.  If I can't get my movie money back, I'd at least like him plunged back into the depths of hell, cool? SOURCE: SALT LAKE CITY WEEKLY, 21 June.  BACK TO THE TOP

CAST "PREFERRED McGOWAN OVER RICHARDS"

27.06.01 - A couple of snippets on the casting of the fourth sister (now confirmed as Paige Halliwell) from this week's Wanda column on E! Online.

Asked what Alyssa and Holly's feelings towards new cast member Rose McGowan, Wanda had nothing specific to say, although she did reveal that "pretty much the whole cast wanted Rose over Denise Richards."

On the subject of why Jennifer Love Hewitt turned down the role, Wanda says that it's most likely a combination of a desire to focus on films and not getting "a good vibe about the working conditions.  (Believe you me, the on-set bitchiness isn't entirely gone just because S.D.'s off the show.)"  BACK TO THE TOP

VIDEOS ON THEIR WAY?

19.06.01 - Charmed videos and DVDs look like they could be on their way!

Richard Morgan e-mailed Kult-TV to ask whether they had the rights to Charmed and Lexx, and the word on the former is they "did try and get Charmed, but someone beat us to it!" which implies that someone has snapped up the rights.  Although there's no word at present on exactly who, CIC (who release Star Trek) must be a strong contender, but let's just hope whoever have the rights follow Fox's Buffy and Angel boxed sets rather than the old two-episodes-per-tape Star Trek format.  BACK TO THE TOP

ROSE McGOWAN FEELING CHARMED

16.06.01 - Rose McGowan (right) has been officially confirmed as "the long-lost sister" that Piper and Pheobe never knew they had.

Born in Florence, and raised in a commune for the weirdo Children of God sex cult, 27-year-old McGowan is best known for her roles in the likes of Scream and Jawbreaker, as well as previously dating Marilyn Manson (who's a million times scarier than anything she'll meet on Charmed).

"We are truly fortunate to have the opportunity to work with Rose McGowan and believe she will bring a new and different dynamic to Charmed," said WB co-president Jordan Levin on Thursday, who must be counting on the show retaining its popularity now that Buffy has moved to UPN.

The actress replaces Shannen Doherty, who reportedly quit Charmed because of difficulties with co-star Alyssa Milano.  Even though she directed the season three finale, Doherty and Milano reportedly didn't speak to each other unless it was absolutely necessary.

Doherty, who previously quit the Aaron Spelling-produced Beverly Hills, 90210 after a stormy tenure, initially said she left because, "I feel that I have accomplished everything I set out to do when I returned to series television."

Then in an interview with TV Guide, Doherty said, "I just didn't want to be a part of it...I don't want to work with people who bitch about their job and complain about it and say that they hate it or anything else."

More recently, in an interview with Movieline, she claimed that she had given "the most brutally honest performances" of her career but that this work was being wasted on a show "for 12-year-olds."

Aaron Spelling has said that the season three cliffhanger will be re-edited to write out Doherty's Prue.  Talking with Entertainment Weekly about the new character, Spelling said: "she's going to be the long-lost little sister Alyssa and Holly never knew they had.  And wait until you see what we came up with to explain why she's been lost: Nobody ever knew she existed."

McGowan's character hasn't been named yet, but she seems to be well-suited to the role, having previously been quoted as saying, "I think if I had lived back in Salem, I would have been burned at the stake."  BACK TO THE TOP

THIESSEN SAID "NO" TO CHARMED

10.06.01 - The latest name to be ruled out as Shannen Doherty's replacement on Charmed is her replacement on Beverly Hills, 90210, Tiffani "don't call me Amber" Thiessen.

"Tiffani was our first choice to take over for Shannen - even before we asked Jennifer [Love Hewitt]," Aaron Spelling told Entertainment Weekly.  "But Tiffani told us she wants to do a half-hour comedy" (NBC didn't pick up her sitcom pilot).

Since his big-name choices have passed, Spelling says the show is leaning towards a fresh face to play a younger witch in the Halliwell household, presumably ruling out the New York Post's rumours about Rose McGowan and Denise Richards and latest fan suggestion Carly Pope.

"She's going to be the long-lost sister Alyssa and Holly never knew that had.  And wait until you see what we came up with to explain why she's been lost: Nobody ever knew she even existed."  Hmmm...that idea sounds suspiciously familiar...

Spelling also says that the season three finale will be recut to explain the sudden disappearance of Prue.  BACK TO THE TOP

McGOWAN OR RICHARDS MAY BE CHARMED

09.06.01 - The latest names to emerge as Shannen Doherty's replacement are Rose McGowan and Denise Richards.

According to The New York Post, the actresses are being eyes as Piper and Phoebe's relative when season four airs later this year.

Richards, 29, is best known as the girl in the wet T-shirt in Wild Things.  Her other films include Starship Troopers, Drop Dead Gorgeous, The World is Not Enough and Valentine.  McGowan, 27, has appeared in The Doom Generation, Scream, Jawbreaker and Monkeybone.  The pair also worked together in the 1997 independent feature NowhereBACK TO THE TOP

THE WB'S FACES 2001

09.06.01 - The WB's website has a section dedicated to their Faces 2001 campaign, where you can download the accompanying video, which is accompanied by a dire cover of The Who's My Generation.

Holly and Alyssa are both featured, but only the later is in new footage.  Other WB's stars featured include members of the casts of Angel, Felicity and Dawson's Creek, although there too much new footage on show - probably because The WB didn't know what shows they'd have next season, and in Charmed's case, who'll be starring in it!  You can view the video hereBACK TO THE TOP

US FHM SEXIEST WOMEN POLL RESULTS

08.06.01 - Holly was the only one of the three original leads not to feature in US FHM's Sexiest Women Poll, which, like the UK equivalent, was again won by Jennifer Lopez, with Alyssa now US TV's no. 1 sci-fi/fantasy babe.

86. Shannen Doherty

Hockey players will rejoice upon reading Shannen's following comment: "I don't care for chiseled features.  Scars are good."  The mercurial 30-year-old is part of the spellbinding threesome that makes up the cast of witches on The WB's Charmed.

4. Alyssa Milano

Removed from her years on Who's The Boss, 28-year-old Alyssa is now loveable witch Phoebe Halliwell on TV's Charmed.  Most impressive: the animated character Ariel from The Little Mermaid was created based on a photo of then 17-year-old Alyssa.

Several actresses whose names have been mentioned as Shannen's replacement also featured: Vanessa Marcil was 50th, Susan Ward 47th, Jennifer Love Hewitt 13th and Tiffani Thiessen just one place behind Alyssa in fifth.  BACK TO THE TOP

MORE ON JLH "NO"

03.06.01 - As an addition to Jennifer Love Hewitt turning down Charmed (see previous below), sources close to the show told the New York Post that the former Party of Five actress was approached to replace Shannen Doherty.

Although no reason was given as to why, zap2it.com suggests that she didn't feel it was time to return to TV, having recently starred with Sigourney Weaver in Heartbreakers and playing the devil opposite Alec Baldwin in the in limbo The Devil and Daniel Webster.

Doherty's departure, which is rumoured to have been prompted over a feud with Alyssa Milano, may be a sign of trouble behind the show's scenes.  In addition, Holly Marie Combs has reportedly asked for and received a big per-episode raise, which allows her to pull in more money than Alyssa, the show's alleged star.

Other actresses whose names have been floated around for the role of the fourth Halliwell include Tiffani Thiessen (hopefully not), Soleil Moon Frye, Vanessa Marcil, Susan Ward and Irene Molloy.  The latter would be an especially interesting choice since she played the Doherty-like star of a Beverly Hills, 90210-esque teen soap on the WB's cancelled Grosse Pointe. Thanks to Richard Morgan.  BACK TO THE TOP

JLH TURNS DOWN THE POWER OF THREE

28.05.01 - According to a post by Alyssa's mom Lin Milano on the Safesearching posting boards, Jennifer Love Hewitt "has passed on being on Charmed.  She would like very much to just do films for right now."  BACK TO THE TOP

TNT GETS CHARMED

23.05.01 - As expected, US cable network TNT is getting Charmed, acquiring the rerun rights for up to eight seasons of the show for $600,000 per episode.  In addition, TNT will pay $150,000 per episode for rights to a second-run window.

TNT also bought the rights to air an immediate rerun of the series within a week of its original airing on The WB, beginning in September.  The cable network plans to screen Charmed reruns on weekdays, beginning in fall 2002.  Meanwhile, Paramount, the show's producers, will put the show into weekend syndication simultaneously.

According to Variety, Charmed appealed to TNT partially because it is self-contained and not serialised, as well as helping to attract younger women to the network.  BACK TO THE TOP

FOURTH SISTER?

23.05.01 - A few snippets from E! Online on Monday.

Supposedly in the final running as Shannen's replacement are Jennifer Love Hewitt and Tiffani [nee Tiffani-Amber] Thiessen.  Wanda suggests that Grosse Points Irene Molloy should be a shoo-in.

A rumour currently flying around is that the Charmed producers taped an extra episode or two with Shannen (possibly as an insurance against a strike), but this appears to be slim.  The likely storyline has Piper and Phoebe realising that there's another Halliwell offspring, either a sister or a cousin, who completes the Power of Three.

Chris B suggested that the new sister should be Piper's doppelgänger, which would allow Holly Marie Combs to play both roles.  Sounds ideal to me...  BACK TO THE TOP

CHARMED TO RUN ON TNT?

17.05.01 - US viewers may get an extra chance to catch Charmed next season, with the news that it and other WB shows such as Gilmore Girls could end up on the network's sister cable channel TNT this fall.  According to Variety, The WB and TNT are currently in talks to share the two shows, as well as Felicity and rubbish sounding new series Smallville.

If the deal goes through, TNT would air each show within seven days of its original broadcast on The WB.  TNT would air the shows at 10pm, so as not to compete with The WB, which airs news during that timeslot.

Sources say that The WB's new Charmed deals allows it to create a dual window for the show on a cable network such as TNT.

Since assuming control of both outlets earlier this year, Turner Broadcasting CEO Jamie Kellner has made it a priority to share programming between The WB and the Turner networks.  The dual window will allow The WB to cover a show's license fee quicker, especiallyfor dramas, which don't usually repeat well.

Sources also say that Gilmore Girls and Charmed were chosen partly because the shows are self-contained and not serialised like Dawson's Creek.

Should the deal go ahead, it won't be the first time a network has shared programming with a cable channel.  ABC and Lifetime signed a deal last year to share Once and Again and NBC and USA share a split run of Law & Order: Special Victims UnitBACK TO THE TOP

LOOK WHO'S BARKING FEATURED MUSIC

15.05.01 - The penultimate episode of season three, Look Who's Barking, is bookended by The Coors.  The show opens with Give Me a Reason and ends with Breathless, a song that's been popping up all over TV these days.

Here's The WB website's introduction for those who've been living on the moon recently -

Who: Only the best thing to come out of Ireland since U2!  The sexy Celtic sibs that call themselves The Corrs (their last name is Corr, go figure) have finally made a splash in the US with their third studio album, In Blue.

What: Pop music with a cool Celtic twist.  Think Riverdance meets Dido done by three hot chicks and their cute bro.  Most of the songs on In Blue are pretty much straight pop with some violin in the background, but they really get down to their roots for a few songs including the final track, Rebel Heart.

More, More, More: The Corrs will be touring Asia and Australia in the fall, but that probably won't do those of us in America and Europe any good.  If you can't jet off to a foreign country to see them, you'll just have to be content with playing their CDs over and over again and checking their website for info on when you'll be able to see them in your town.  BACK TO THE TOP

WB RELEASES NEW SEASON DETAILS

15.05.01 - The WB's press release for Charmed's fourth season contains a spoiler for the season three finale, but if you already know that Shannen's out then it's nothing major:

Charmed
Returning Series
One Hour Drama
Thursday 9/8c

For three spellbinding years, the Charmed Ones - Prue, Piper, and Phoebe - have used their witchcraft and the Book of Shadows to keep themselvese alive as they save innocent souls and fight the darkest evil.  Now, this season, the unthinkable will happen.  The power of three will be broken forever.

So begins a new chapter in the Charmed saga as the surviving sisters search for a way to stay alive and strengthen their fragile bond while they continue to vanquish the diabolical.  The sisters find renewed faith in the form of an unexpected revelation: there may be yet another Halliwell offspring they never knew about - one who could reunite the power of three and return these virtuous witches to their former glory.  They'll find that fighting the good fight is a deadly occupation, but one they were born to do.

From executive producers Aaron Spelling, E. Duke Vincent, Connie Burge and Brad Kern, with Spelling Entertainment.

The cast members listed for next season on The WB's website are Alyssa, Holly, Brian Krause and Julian McMahon.  The WB's description of a possible fourth sister would seem to rule out the rumour that Soleil Moon Frye is to replace Shannen as Prue, although she could conceive play a new character.  BACK TO THE TOP