- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Comedy goes West

Comedy Central has teamed with Kanye West for a project described as hip-hop meets the Muppets, the Hollywood Reporter says.

A half-hour pilot has been shot for the project, tentatively titled “Alligator Boots.” The new show is from Jackhole Productions, the production company founded by Jimmy Kimmel, Daniel Kellison and Adam Carolla that also was behind Comedy Central’s puppet-centric “Crank Yankers.”

The project, which is under consideration for 2009, would feature music produced and performed by Mr. West and fellow rapper Rhymefest. Both are executive producers on the pilot alongside Mr. Kellison. Mr. West also hosts the pilot, with an eye toward having a different celebrity guest host for each episode - a setup similar to that of the original “Muppets Show.”

Mr. Kimmel’s brother Jon (“South Park”) is co-executive producer on the pilot, THR says.

Roth to ‘Lie’ for Fox

Fox is prepping a January launch for “Lie to Me,” an hourlong drama series starring Tim Roth as a man with the innate ability to read whether people are telling the truth.

According to Variety, the network has officially picked up a 13-episode order. Mr. Roth - seen most recently on the big screen in this summer’s remake of “The Incredible Hulk” - stars as Dr. Cal Lightman, a specialist who can read the human face, body and voice and determine, more accurately than any polygraph, whether the person in front of him is lying.

“Lie to Me” is set to start shooting in November. Fox earlier ordered several scripts in addition to the pilot, giving series creator Sam Baum and his team a chance to generate several more stories.

In the show penned by Mr. Baum, Mr. Roth’s character is contracted by the FBI, local police, corporations and others to help in investigations. Kelli Williams stars as Dr. Gillian Foster, Lightman’s partner; the cast also includes Brendan Hines and Monica Raymund.

Imagine TV and 20th Century Fox TV are behind the show, loosely based on the real-life exploits of psychologist Paul Ekman, who’s considered an expert in the science of facial micro-expressions.

“Lie” is the first TV series for Mr. Roth, who will keep his British accent for the role - a rarity for U.K. actors in American shows, Variety notes.

‘Makeover’ takeover

TV Land will air an “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” marathon from Monday through Oct. 5, Multichannel.com reports.

The marathon, which will include episodes featuring stars such as Robin Williams, Susan Lucci and Martina McBride, will air in prime time each day from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.

The show features Ty Pennington and his team of contractors, designers and hundreds of workers who practically raze the old homes and then repair, restore and redesign them at a lightning-fast pace of just one week.

The hit series, which on Sunday begins its sixth season on ABC, features the design squad of team leader Mr. Pennington with designers Paul DiMeo, Paige Hemmis, Michael Moloney, Ed Sanders, Tracy Hutson, Eduardo Xol, John Littlefield, Rib Hillis and Didiayer Snyder.

NFL scores for NBC

Ratings from Nielsen Media Research for the top five shows, their networks and viewerships for the week of Sept. 15 through 21 were: 1) “Sunday Night Football: Dallas at Green Bay,” NBC, 22.2 million; 2) “House,” Fox, 14.7 million; 3) “60 Minutes,” CBS, 14.5 million; 4) “Sunday Night NFL Pre-Kick,” NBC, 14 million; and 5) “Fringe,” Fox, 13.2 million.

cCompiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from Web and wire reports

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