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'Anchorwoman' producers shopping canceled show to cable networks


By Christopher Rocchio and Steve Rogers, 08/28/2007 

Anchorwoman star Lauren Jones was both "completely shocked" and "disappointed" to learn the reality series was canceled by Fox after last Wednesday night's special one-hour premiere episode delivered poor ratings. 

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However Anchorwoman apparently may have some life left in it.  Jones told the New York Post on Friday that producers Fox 21 and The G Group are shopping Anchorwoman to several cable channels, including E! and MTV. 

While Fox had originally reportedly planned to make Anchorwoman's remaining unaired half-hour episodes available through fox.com and MySpace's "Fox on Demand" service, the producers' decision means that the episodes "will likely not turn up" online, according to the Post.

A move for Anchorwoman from Fox to E! wouldn't be unprecedented.  The recently canceled The Simple Life first premiered in December 2003 on Fox and the broadcast network aired two addition installments before canceling the show in October 2005.  A month later, E! announced it had picked up The Simple Life and had ordered production on a fourth season, which premiered in June 2006. 

Anchorwoman -- billed as a "comedy/reality hybrid" by Fox -- had featured Jones, a 24-year-old Jackson, MI-native, former beauty queen and World Wrestling Entertainment "diva, trying to make it as a Texas television news anchor despite her lack of previous journalism experience.  The show filmed at KYTX-TV Channel 19 -- a new 3-year-old CBS affiliate in Tyler, TX.

While the show only averaged 2.72 million viewers and a 1.0/3 rating/share among the Adults 18-49 demographic during its 8-9PM ET/PT time period last Wednesday, Jones seems optimistic that it will pay dividends for her career. 

"I actually benefited because I got so much publicity," Jones told the Post. "I have so many offers on the table and everyone's been so supportive. No one has yanked those offers."

According to the Post, E! -- which is reportedly considering hiring Jones as an entertainment correspondent -- may soon be one of those offers. 

Should she join E!, Jones would certainly have plenty of reality-related company.  In addition to American Idol host Ryan Seacrest, the network's E! News team also includes Dancing with the Stars co-host Samantha Harris and Giuliana DePandi, who is set to marry original The Apprentice winner Bill Rancic in Italy this weekend.  Chelsea Handler, the short-lived host of Fox's recently-concluded On the Lot reality series, also began hosting a weeknight late-night show for the network earlier this summer.

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