Putting together a primetime lineup takes more than just throwing darts at an empty schedule. (Well, most of the time.) As the networks put together their fall plans, it's up to the scheduling executives to parse test-audience scores, research data, producer pleas and gut instincts to determine which new and returning series should make it and when they should air.
But sometimes serendipity ...
Wide-eyed actor Ethan Embry — who played Reese Witherspoon's gay best pal in Sweet Home Alabama — is back fighting crime on TV. On his last (short-lived) series, Fox's Freakylinks, he solved paranormal mysteries. Now, he's going back to basics, playing Det. Frank Smith on ABC's Dragnet remake (debuting Sunday at 10 pm/ET).
As exec producer Dick Wolf pointed out to reporters at the Television Critics Assoc. press tour in Hollywood: "Nobody under 35 has seen the original show, unless they're up at 3 in the morning, stoned or drinking, watching TV Land."
"Which is a surprise that I haven't seen it!" quipped the 24-year-old Embry.