On the Air
Witches & Wardrobe
Presto, chango! Now that The WB’s Charmed has moved time slots to Sundays at 8 p.m., producers are conjuring up new ways to make sure viewers seek out the four-year-old drama. Strategy No. 1: Show off more of that sorceress skin. ”These women are beautiful, pushing 30, and two are single,” explains executive producer Brad Kern. ”So sex will become part of the show this year. It’s going to be fun and provocative.” To wit: Alyssa Milano will come out from behind the cauldron this Sunday donning a very skimpy mermaid costume (she gets stuck in the sea, and Holly Marie Combs and Rose McGowan must save her). A future episode involves a Basic Instinct-type plot with a sexy killer temptress, and yet another has the gals playing superheroines in hot, tight costumes. ”It’s not going to be gratuitous,” says Kern, adding that parents shouldn’t worry about its presence during the family hour. ”I think we can put a little Sex and the City into the show and still vanquish demons.”
What do you get when you cross reality TV and B-list stars? Well, in addition to The Osbournes, The Anna Nicole Show, and Fox’s upcoming Celebrity Boot Camp, Granada Television is reportedly peddling a Hollywood version of I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!, which drew big ratings in England this summer by abandoning low-grade stars in an Australian rain forest (viewers voted them off one by one). One of the broadcast nets may buy the project, a source says. Meanwhile, USA Network’s Eco-Challenge will feature two celebrity teams when this year’s race kicks off in Fiji on Oct. 11 (it will air next April). Star Wars: Episode II — Attack of the Clones’ Hayden Christensen is teaming up with two siblings and a friend, while the first Survivor’s Jenna Lewis, Survivor: Africa’s Ethan Zohn, and Road Rules alumni Adam Larson and Timmy Beggy will make up another squad. But if you’re thinking they’ll get special treatment during the grueling race — which involves rappelling, mountain biking, and mountaineering — think again: Eco-Challenge and Survivor executive producer Mark Burnett says, ”At the beginning, I’ll get it over with and announce, ‘Yeah, that’s Hayden Christensen, he still bleeds and cries. And no one asked Ethan to do this. Don’t punish these people because one happened to do a movie, and the others did TV shows.”’ So does this mean Burnett’s prepping for a real celebrity Survivor? Don’t bet your immunity idol. ”It’s an A-list show,” he says. ”You can’t do it with B-list celebs. I’d rather not do it at all than do some silly publicity stunt.” Right, leave that to Fear Factor.
AND SO ON… TLC’s Trading Spaces — the show that gives two teams of homeowners $1,000 and two days to make over a room in each other’s abodes — is planning a live Jan. 18 broadcast from Las Vegas.