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UPN Juggles Thursday Comedies

(Posted September 15, 2005 by Leah Yoakum)

LOS ANGELES ( "Everybody Hates Chris" is staying put, but UPN has rearranged the rest of its new Thursday lineup behind the critically lauded comedy.

In making the moves, the network has moved "Eve" back from 8:30 to 9 p.m. ET Thursdays, giving UPN an established show to lead off the monstrously competitive 9 p.m. hour. Rookie show "Love, Inc." gets the 8:30 spot behind "Chris," while "Cuts" drops back a half-hour to 9:30.

UPN also thinks that "Love, Inc.," a romantic comedy that stars Holly Robinson Peete ("Like Family") and Busy Philipps ("Freaks and Geeks") as employees of a matchmaking agency, will flow better out of "Chris" and into "Eve" and "Cuts."

However the night is scheduled, UPN will be in a heated battle for ratings on Thursdays. No one figures to challenge CBS' dominant lineup of "Survivor," "CSI" and "Without a Trace," but with NBC's once-powerful schedule on a downswing, the other networks have made aggressive scheduling moves on Thursdays.

"Chris" and "Love, Inc." will face cult hits "Alias" and "Smallville" along with FOX's young-adult magnet "The O.C." at 8 p.m. The 9 p.m. race for third features ABC's "Night Stalker," The WB's "Everwood" and FOX's "Reunion" in addition to "Eve" and "Cuts."

Advertisers apparently believe that at least "Chris" will hold its own. The Chris Rock-produced and -narrated show, based on his life as a teenager, has earned raves as one of the best new shows of the season and is commanding UPN-record prices of nearly $180,000 for a 30-second commercial.

Source: Zap2it

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