It’s upfronts week. What does that mean, you may ask?
Well, for anyone who follows the TV industry, upfronts week means the week when all of the networks – both major and cable – make their annual presentations to the New York advertisers.
What do the networks hold the upfronts?
Well, they make grand presentations of their existing and new shows for the upcoming fall TV season in the hopes that the advertisers will provide them with the much needed influx of cash to air all of their shows throughout the season.
This is the time for each network to “wow” the advertisers with celebrity appearances from cast members of their top shows and introduce the stars of their new series as well; to make great video presentations to highlight all they have to offer from their returning hits and new series and in some cases, to have grand musical presentations from big name singers and musicians to add “color” to the presentations.
But since the proliferation of social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, keeping secrets has become nearly impossible for the networks. This year has been no exception with all of the major networks releasing details on the pilots they have chosen to greenlight to series as well as most of the cancellations and renewals of their existing shows; be they comedy, reality or drama.
Very little is unknown at this point where the major networks are concerned except for possibly a few shows as well as each network’s proposed fall schedule, which, in truth, is anyone’s guess. The basic importance of the upfront presentations is twofold. First, the upfronts happen in order to acquire the much needed funds from the advertisers, who buy ad space with each of the networks, which basically allows your favorite shows to air each week. And, second, the upfronts happen in order for the networks to reveal their fall programming schedule, which can, and will, change before the new fall TV season starts.
But, much like any other long-running ceremony that stands on pomp and circumstance, the annual upfront presentations still reign supreme, enthralling industry leaders, press and the avid admirers of television with all its brilliance and spectacle; but does it really serve any higher purpose than getting the networks advertising dollars?
The full purpose for the upfronts can be argued infinitively; but it will, I’m sure, not be changed from its original creation because of the importance of advertising dollars to the entertainment industry.
For lovers of TV, though, the only importance held by the upfront presentations is to learn what shows will air in the upcoming season and what the fall TV season will hold for the faithful fans and viewers.
As it stands right now, all of the major networks have made announcements in advance of upfronts week, revealing which shows (for the most part) have been canceled, renewed and which pilots have been picked up to series. The official announcements began yesterday with FOX and NBC, making their announcements while ABC will make their announcements today. CBS will roll out their programming plans tomorrow and The CW will make their plans known on Thursday.
Let’s hope the networks give the advertisers what they want; and they provide the viewers with a great fall line-up for once.
Musician Spotlight: This month’s musician spotlight is on the English alternative rock band Muse that was formed in 1994. The band consists of members Matthew Bellamy (lead vocals, guitar and piano), Christopher Wolstenholme (bass guitar, backing vocals and keyboards) and Dominic Howard (drums, percussion and synthesizers).
The band’s first self-titled EP was released in May 1998 followed eight months later by their second EP called Muscle Museum. Since that time they have released five studio albums: Showbiz in 1999, Origin of Symmetry in 2001, Absolution in 2003, Black Holes and Revelations in 2006 and The Resistance in 2009. They also have three live albums in their collection: Hullabaloo Soundtrack in 2002, Absolution Tour in 2005 and HAARP in 2008. They have also been featured on the first three soundtracks for the Twilight Saga movies.
The band has earned a Mercury Prize nomination, five MTV Europe Music Awards, five Q Awards, two Brit Awards and four Kerrang! Awards, including eight NME Awards. The band has sold well over ten million albums worldwide and is known for their energetic and extravagant live performances and their fusion of many music genres, including progressive rock, alternative rock, classical music, heavy metal, and electronica with recurring themes of revolution.
You can learn more about Muse at their official website here.