The CW officially announced a fall schedule Thursday that, at least on one night, looks eerily similar to the lineup Fox put forth back in 1992.
On Tuesday, “90210” — the successful re-engineering of “Beverly Hills 90210” launched last fall — will lead into a new version of “Melrose Place.” Just like back in the day.
The new series will feature Laura Leighton (Sydney in the original version) as a landlord in the trendy Hollywood apartment building to a whole new crop of twentysomethings. Devious doctor Michael Mancini (Thomas Calabro) also will be worked back in.
On Wednesday, the network will use its longrunning reality franchise, “America’s Next Top Model,” to lead into new drama “The Beautiful Life,” yet another youth-oriented soap, this one focused on the world of fashion models. Ashton Kutcher’s Katalyst Films is behind the project.
Thursday will be the CW’s paranormal night, with the new “Vampire Diaries” leading into returnee “Supernatural.” Produced by Kevin Williamson, “Diaries” stars Nina Dobrev (“DeGrassi: The Next Generation”) as a high-school student who become fascinated by a mysterious boy.
Bookending the week, the CW will continue to pair its biggest hit, “Gossip Girl,” with “One Tree Hill” on Monday nights, while “Smallville” will lead into repeats of “Top Model” on Fridays.
The tone to this year’s CW upfront event was markedly more upbeat than that of 2008, when there was serious speculation that owner CBS would can the floundering enterprise.
Thank "Gossip Girl," which sparked ratings among the CW’s core demographic of women 18-34 by 85 percent on Mondays. "We’ve got huge momentum thanks to ‘Gossip Girl’ breaking out in a huge way," said CW entertainment president Dawn Ostroff.
Also helping build that momentum has been "Top Model," currently in production on a fall cycle that will focus on females 5-foot-7 and under — or, as star Tyra Banks put it during a brief stage appearance Thursday, "short girls."
With Banks standing beside the diminutive Ostroff, that comment drew laughs from the live audience in New York, as well as those on Chicago and L.A. watching the presentation on tape delay.
Once again, the CW will jump the gun on the other broadcast networks, launching it’s fall schedule in early September.
Here’s the CW’s fall schedule (new series are in upper case):
8 p.m.: “Gossip Girl”
9 p.m.: “One Tree Hill”
8 p.m.: “90210”;
9 p.m.: “MELROSE PLACE”
8 p.m.: “America’s Next Top Model”
9 p.m. – “THE BEAUTIFUL LIFE”
8 p.m.: “VAMPIRE DIARIES”
9 p.m.: “Supernatural”
8 p.m.: “Smallville”
9 p.m.: “America’s Next Top Model” (repeats)