NBC has announced that The Biggest Loser: Special Edition, its new name for its previously announced self-contained themed The Biggest Loser spinoff series, will premiere Wednesday, January 4 at 9PM ET/PT.

Part of a mid-season schedule shakeup that will include the premieres of two new shows, the return of Scrubs, and moving the network's My Name Is Earl/The Office sitcoms into the Thursday night time period that is currently occupied by The Apprentice, The Biggest Loser: Special Edition will air weekly in the Wednesday time period until the February 10 start of NBC's Winter Olympics coverage.

"These mid-season adjustments allow us to showcase the season's top-rated new comedy in Earl as well as the increasingly popular The Office on Thursdays along with the new Four Kings while we also introduce a great new drama series in Book of Daniel on Fridays" NBC Entertainment President Kevin Reilly stated in the network's announcement of the moves.. "In so doing, we have the pieces in place to fulfill one of our goals -- to bring back a block of quality comedy to Thursday nights."

Both The Apprentice and Joey -- the current Thursday night shows that Earl, Office, and Kings will be replacing -- will return after the Olympics, however NBC won't reveal the details of its post-Olympic broadcast schedule until January.

The Biggest Loser 2, won by Matt Hoover, broadcast its record-setting finale on November 29. The finale dominated its 8-10PM ET/PT time period, averaging 16.0 million overall viewers and a 6.7/16 rating/share in the Adults 18-49 demographic. In addition to representing The Biggest Loser's highest ratings ever, the numbers also represented NBC's strongest non-Olympic results in the time period in four years (since November 27, 2001.)

NBC recently renewed The Biggest Loser's normal format for a third edition, however given the show's somewhat lengthy production schedule, The Biggest Loser 3 might not air until Fall 2006