- - Sunday, May 13, 2012

New “America’s Got Talent” judge Howard Stern said his critics should watch the show before attacking him.

Mr. Stern debuts Monday as Piers Morgan’s replacement on NBC’s summertime talent show. Yet a group that calls attention to bad language and risque content on television already has written to advertisers asking them to stay away. The Parents Television Council said the radio shock jock’s addition “will likely result in a sharp increase in explicit content.”

In an hourlong, expletive-free news conference Thursday, Mr. Stern dismissed those concerns and said he fully understands “America’s Got Talent” is a family show.

“I really feel a responsibility to the people who love this show already,” Mr. Stern said. “In no way do I want to get in the way of it. I want to broaden it and make it better.”

Mr. Stern said his critics “are entitled to their opinion. They just sound awfully foolish when they haven’t seen the show.”

Still, his reputation precedes him. Mr. Stern noted that before an appearance Thursday on “The View,” executive producer Bill Geddie came over to instruct Mr. Stern on what he could or couldn’t say on the air. “I know the rules,” Mr. Stern said. “Bill, I’m 58 years old. I feel like I’m 14” getting a lecture, he said.

NBC moved the show’s base from California to Newark, N.J., to accommodate Mr. Stern’s satellite radio schedule when he agreed to replace Mr. Morgan. He said he has taken the role of being the “honest” judge who doesn’t sugarcoat things for contestants.

Mr. Stern said he was a fan of the show before being asked to be on it, preferring it to “American Idol” because the wider variety of acts on “America’s Got Talent” makes it seem like vaudeville.

“I didn’t need the money,” he said. “I didn’t need more fame. I certainly feel famous enough. I’m comfortable in my life. I just love the show and thought how much fun it would be to do it.”

CBS sues ABC to stop production of reality show

CBS sued ABC on Thursday to stop an upcoming reality show that CBS claims is being developed in violation of its copyrights and with secrets obtained from the long-running reality show “Big Brother.”

According to the Associated Press, the federal lawsuit seeks an injunction barring ABC from continuing its work on or airing of “The Glass House,” a show that will film and allow viewers to vote off contestants living together in a house.

CBS claimed the show copies the formula used for its hit series “Big Brother,” and that ABC has hired 19 of the show’s former staffers to help make “Glass House.”

The lawsuit also names two top “Glass House” producers and an ABC programming executive who worked on “Big Brother,” claiming they are violating nondisclosure agreements and giving away secrets of the show to their new employers.

“In copying ‘Big Brother,’ defendants have had an unprecedented and troubling degree of access to CBS’s copyrightable expression, as well as CBS’s protected trade secrets and other confidential and proprietary information related to the behind-the-scenes development, filming and production of ‘Big Brother,’ ” the lawsuit states.

In its lawsuit, CBS claims an unnamed ABC executive instructed others to try to hire as many former “Big Brother” staffers as possible to undercut its competitor.

ABC denied wrongdoing in a statement, calling the lawsuit meritless.

“The differences between ‘Glass House’ and ‘Big Brother’ are both fundamental and obvious,” the network wrote in a statement, citing interactive elements, audience participation and new technologies.

Whitney Houston’s family subject of new reality show

A reality show featuring Whitney Houston’s relatives, including daughter Bobbi Kristina and mother Cissy, is in the works.

Houston representative Kristen Foster confirmed the Lifetime show, “The Houston Family Chronicles,” on Friday.

It will focus on Pat Houston, sister-in-law and manager of the late singer. Pat Houston is also helping care for Whitney Houston’s only child, 19-year-old Bobbi Kristina. The show promises to feature Bobbi Kristina and Cissy, as well as Houston’s cousin Dionne Warwick, gospel singer CeCe Winans and other members of the Houston family.

Whitney Houston died in February at age 48.

‘30 Rock’s‘ last season shortened to 13 episodes

NBC said “30 Rock’s” next season will be its last.

The network said Thursday the much-acclaimed sitcom will have an abbreviated run of 13 episodes in its seventh season before calling it quits.

The show has been a critical favorite since premiering in 2006. It has won numerous awards, as have its creator-star Tina Fey and co-star Alec Baldwin. Many high-profile guest stars, including Matt Damon, Paul McCartney and Al Gore, have appeared on the show. The series was never a ratings smash, however, and this year its audience has dwindled to an average of 3.5 million viewers.

NBC will join other broadcast networks in unveiling full new prime-time schedules for advertisers this week.

‘Cougar Town’ moves to TBS, escapes cancellation

“Cougar Town” is about to get a new address.

The ABC sitcom, a cult favorite but never a ratings blockbuster on broadcast television, will be moving to cable’s TBS, the network said Thursday.

TBS has ordered a fourth season of the sitcom, which was facing cancellation by ABC. New episodes are scheduled to begin airing early next year. In addition, TBS has acquired the rights to repeat the show’s first three seasons of 61 episodes originally seen on ABC.

“Cougar Town” stars Courteney Cox as a recently divorced mom struggling with the challenges and pitfalls of her new single life. The series also stars Brian Van Holt, Christa Miller, Ian Gomez, Josh Hopkins and Busy Philipps.

Compiled from Web and wire reports.

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