As a die-hard fan of Curb Your Enthusiasm, I'm thrilled that TV Guide Network has the opportunity to air it for our viewers. There was always, of course, the concern that some of the series' more R-rated material would have to be edited for basic cable. As any Curb buff knows, the show is like a fine garment—you can't just cut into it. If we were going to show Curb Your Enthusiasm, we wanted to do everything in our power to preserve its integrity. Larry David liked the sound of this.
Syndicated series that run over 20 minutes are often chopped down to fit the traditional half-hour format, but we wanted to air Curb in its entirety. Larry and his team of executive producers came to us with the idea of Curb: The Discussion, a segment to run after each episode that would round the total running time up to an hour. Developed and produced in collaboration with Real Time with Bill Maher executive producer Scott Carter, The Discussion features host Susie Essman (Susie Greene on Curb) chatting with celebrities, experts, and prominent social figures about the show's ethical and moral predicaments.
We then took a fine-toothed comb to the episodes, determined to cut Curb in a way that would adhere to basic cable's standards and practices but retain the series' heart and soul. Take Susie Greene's character, for instance: She calls Larry all of the names in the book, but her lines are so effective because of the anger behind them—not necessarily because of the words themselves. When focus groups that saw the completed episodes didn't mention the cuts once, we knew we'd accomplished our goal.
The TV Guide Team is incredibly excited to debut Curb on basic cable, and we're looking forward to hearing your thoughts on Curb: The Discussion. Be sure to tune in to TV Guide Network every Wednesday and Thursday night at 10/9c — starting Wednesday — for the Curb you love, with perks.
Diane Robina is Executive Vice President of Programming & Marketing for TV Guide Network, and also continues to serve as President of Emerging Networks at Comcast Programming Group.