'Dancing with the Stars 3' to air this fall, air Tuesdays and Wednesdays
By Reality TV World staff, 05/17/2006
As expected, ABC has announced that the third edition of Dancing with the Stars, the smash-hit reality ballroom dancing competition that aired its first two editions as summer and midseason programming, will air as part of the network's 2006-2007 fall programming lineup.
Rather than air on the same Thursday/Friday broadcast schedule that its second edition used, Dancing with the Stars' third season will move to an American Idol-like midweek schedule (fitting given its Idol-like ratings growth) in which its performance and results shows will air on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 8PM ET/PT. Despite the move to the more competitive Wednesday night time period, Dancing with the Stars 3's live results shows will retain the same full-hour variety show-type format that they ended up adopting during the course of last season's Friday night broadcasts.
Joining Dancing with the Stars on ABC's Tuesday night schedule will be Let's Rob... and Help Me Help You, a pair of new sitcoms that will fill the network's 9PM hour, and Boston Legal, which will remain in its 10PM time period. Lost will remain in its Wednesdays at 9PM time period and serve as Dancing with the Stars 3's results show lead-out, with The Nine, a new bank robbery hostage drama, airing in the network's plum post-Lost 10PM time period.
While the move to a Tuesday/Wednesday schedule will put Dancing with the Stars up against CBS's popular NCIS series, the decision to no longer air its performance show's on Thursdays will also prevent the show from having to compete with Survivor, which cut in Dancing with the Stars's ratings when CBS unexpectedly premieredSurvivor: Panama prior to NBC's Winter Olympics coverage. CBS had originally been expected to delay Survivor's return until immediately after NBC's Olympics coverage ended -- a schedule that would have resulted in Dancing with the Stars 2 airing its finale the week before Survivor: Panama's debut.
American Idol currently dominates the Tuesday 8PM time period, however after next week's season finale, the show won't return to Fox's lineup until next January -- by which time Dancing with the Stars 3's own season will have concluded. While it certainly doesn't draw the ratings of Idol, the decision to move Dancing with the Stars' results show will end up pitting the show against one other reality show: NBC's The Biggest Loser, which after airing its second edition on Tuesdays, will move to Wednesdays this fall.