Press Tour Live-Blog: The CW Executive Session

07.29.10 7 years ago 12 Comments

The CW

I wasn’t sure that there was really anything that CW Entertainment President Dawn Ostroff could say at her Thursday (July 29) Television Critics Association press tour panel that could possibly be worth live-blogging.

I tweeted as much and at least 10 people tweeted me that I should live-tweet the session just in case it’s announced that “Veronica Mars” will be back for a fourth season. And at least eight of those people were joking!

In the spirit of that joke (and the one or two people who just may have been serious), I’ll live-blog the panel. Just in case “Veronica Mars” is coming back for a fourth season.

[Early hunch: It isn’t.]

Click through. You never know…

2:07 p.m. Pacific. The oft hilarious Paul McGuire introduces Paul Hewitt for his first session as CW publicity czar/funnyman.

2:10 p.m. Warning: WiFi problems may cause this live-blog to be more inconsistently updated than normal live-blogs. Bear with me.

2:11 p.m. Dawn Ostroff is TV’s longest-stting network president apparently. Who knew?

2:12 p.m. Ostroff begins by repeating her upfronts spiel about The CW’s online and social media presence. 

2:13 p.m. They’re building The CW show-by-show. Last year, that show was “The Vampire Diaries,” not that they aren’t also proud of “Life Unexpected.” And this year? They’re positioned for growth! Or that’s what Ostroff says, anyway.

2:15 p.m.
“We are firmly entrenched in the cultural zeitgeist, and especialy with young people.” So Ostroff says.

2:16 p.m.
Ostroff calls last season the strongest season, creatively, for “Supernatural.” And that, simply, is why “Supernatural” is back, even with Eric Kripke no longer really serving as showrunner. She calls this season a throwback, with Sam becoming a bit more like Dean and Dean becoming a bit more like Sam.

2:17 p.m. “We don’t really develop comedies,” Ostroff admits, though she points to “18 to Life” as proof that The CW hasn’t completely abandoned laughter. She says most of the network’s dramas have a lot of comedy in them.

2:18 p.m. “Our young viewers are the first to migrate to other platforms,” Ostroff says, emphasizing the importance of finding a way to measure those people. She says the days of waking up and looking at the overall ratings are done. Then why am I working at 8:15 every morning?

2:19 p.m. “Vampire Diaries” has struck a chord for reasons that go beyond mere vampires. This season has an arc already set up and the fanbase is growing, Ostroff says.

2:21 p.m. “We have left the door open. We hope that he will come back, but we don’t know if that will happen,” Ostroff says of Michael Rosenbaum and a possible return to “Smallville.” She says the producers have an end in mind that they want to work toward, reminding us that Darkseid is the Villain, which we already knew if we paid attention to tweets from Comic-Con.
2:23 p.m. Why “Nikita”? Because they’ve wanted a female-driven action show. “The writing was very strong. Danny Cannon did an amazing job directing the show. McG is one of the producers. It was just an incredible package,” Ostroff says. And why “Hellcats”? Well, that one was an underdog and the brass were all surprised they liked it as much as they did. She says that the show felt “a little older” to them.
2:24 p.m. They have full commercial loads in their online streams at The CW. Ostroff says that they’re perfectly happy if the online commercials actually drive viewers back to television, predicting it could become a blueprint for the entire industry. The critic asking the question, though, isn’t pleased with the commercials himself. She calls online “a convenience” and says that viewers will actually watch more commercial content in their streams.
2:26 p.m. No alternate ending was ever shot for “One Tree Hill,” which closed on a big cliffhanger. Ostroff says it’s way too early to speculate on whether or not this one will actually be the last “One Tree Hill” season. She says they’d love to have another season.
2:28 p.m. Ostroff has been in her job between UPN and The CW for 9 years. Asked about Steve McPherson’s departure, she wishes him the best. “I always say, ‘It’s a rented seat,'” she says.
2:29 p.m. “We have started to talk about if there are other DC Comic adaptations,” she says, saying that they’d love to see another DC project on the schedule, but they haven’t selected any possibilities yet.
2:30 p.m. Regarding summer programming, they wanted to get some original programming on leading into the fall. They really believe in “Plain Jane” and expect additional exposure in upcoming episodes. “We were very realistic about the ratings,” Ostroff insists. For “18 to Life,” they’re also realistic. “It’s important for us to launch the fall shows,” she says, pointing out that, as usual, The CW will launch earlier this fall. “You have to pick the priorities of what you need to get out there,” she adds.
2:32 p.m. More on “Supernatural.” Ostroff reminds us of the original creature-of-the-week that we’re returning to, adding that the Winchester Boys will learn that their mom’s side of the family is also hunters, which will be important. 
2:34 p.m. So far, no announcement regarding a fourth season of “Veronica Mars.” Sorry.
2:34 p.m. A “High Society” question? Really? Sigh. Ostroff says that “High Society” was not a “soft scripted” reality show. She says that for a lot of people, it was fascinating. But she fears that in the midst of a financial crisis, it may not have found the audience it should have.
2:35 p.m. “Shedding for the Wedding” is their only midseason show so far, but more will come. She says that “HMS” is among the shows still in the running.
2:36 p.m. The CW isn’t viewing this as the last season of “Supernatural.” They hope it comes back.
2:36 p.m. Ostroff is a fan of stunts like the “Vampire Diaries” marathon week, saying that viewers weren’t unhappy with the multiple repeats of the same few episodes. She says that while repeats are sometimes a problem, viewers still like them.
Sorry about that, kids. No “Veronica Mars” news…

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