US free-to-air broadcaster MyNetworkTV is considering a major revamp to its schedule, following the failure of its wall-to-wall telenovela strategy to pull in viewers.
The network was created by News Corp (Fox) last September, to provide primeetime programming for tv stations left out in the cold with the merger of WB & UPN as the CW network.
But MyNetwork's two hour weeknightly block of telenovelas (short run television serials) hasn't proven a hit with viewers. The network's two launch dramas, Desire
and Fashion House
, finished their thirteen week run in early December, with average ratings of less than 1%.
Network execs are now looking at cutting back the serials to just two nights a week, and are considering options for other non-drama programming to fill the gaps.
It's believed the network already has some alternative shows in development, including Celebrity Love Island
(based on a British format), Catwalk
(a model quest reality show), and On Scene
(a crime news magazine show).
Execs are also looking at signing a deal with the Ultimate Fighting Championship
(a US martial arts league), as well as playing the live games show My Games Fever
in prime-time (the programme is currently being trialled in daytime by 10 stations). The premium phoneline gameshow format has proven successful in the UK and other markets).
MyNetworkTV's second round of shows launched on December the 6th, but ratings haven't improved. Academy-award winning actress Tatum O'Neal stars in Wicked Wicked Games
, which is followed by Watch Over Me
, featuring pulp tv veterans Casper Van Dien and Catherine Oxenberg.