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WITCHBLADE
News and Rumors and What Not


Here is a list of news, rumors, articles, spoilers and such about
WITCHBLADE
CONSIDER THIS A WARNING!



Last update: 07/15/02


NEWS 07/15/02
MAILING LISTS
GENERAL INFO
PRODUCTION INFO




NEWS

07/15/02. Top Cow's Matt Hawkins said that a Witchblade DVD with the original two-hour movie is being targeted for a holiday season. Another DVD/VHS of the first season episodes should be released next spring, "theoretically in preparation for a third-season launch," Hawkins said.

07/02/02. TNT has planned a Witchblade marathon on Sunday, Aug. 26, beginning at noon. Episodes will include "Emergence," "Destiny," "Agape," "Consectatio," "Static," "Nailed," "Lagrimas" and "Hierophant."

06/11/02. Production on Witchblade resumed Monday after series star Yancy Butler returned to work following a stint in rehab. The show -- which kicks off its second season on Sunday -- had been on hiatus while Butler received treatment for an alcohol problem.

06/04/02. According to Zap2It news, Yancy Butler will be out of re-hab and reporting to work on June 10, 2002, fitting it perfectly in the already scheduled hiatus from filming the production was going to take anyways! Let's hope the 30 days were enough for Butler, we would hate for he to have a relapse because she did not spend enough time in re-hab. If she can keep it up, the production airing schedule should suffer no setbacks and be able to follow through with the originally planned schedule.

06/04/02. TNT has been aggressively promoting Witchblade, so the conventional wisdom is that the June 16 2002 premiere date is still a go.

06/02/02. Got the new airdate schedule. WB is no longer guaranteeing that the second season will start airing in June. Every date is marked TBD (to be determined) due to "production shutdown".

05/20/02. Production on the TNT series 'Witchblade' has been temporarily shut down. Series star Yancy Butler has voluntarily checked herself into a rehabilitation center for alcohol treatment. Fans who would like to send well-wishes to Yancy or whom would like to send fan-mail to any of the show cast/crew, you may do so by sending emails to YancyButler@earthlink.net to Butler and witchblade@turner.com for everyone else. Your mail will be forwarded accordingly.

04/18/02. The two-hour season premiere of Witchblade has been moved by TNT to Sunday, June 16. The first two episodes are titled "Emergence" and "Destiny." They were originally scheduled for Monday, June 10. Ironically, June 16 is Father's Day and Witchblade star Yancy Butler's father, Joe Butler of the Lovin' Spoonful, is a guest-star in the episode. After the two-hour premiere, Witchblade movies into its regular time period, Mondays at 9 p.m., on June 17.

11-25-01. Butler was in Toronto two weeks ago for some pre-production work. The actually filming for Witchblade season two is scheduled for January 22, 2002. It is scheduled to wrap on June 18, 2002. That means the May 24-26 2002 Witchblade Con in Toronto will have live cast members to choose from. I assume TNT wants to sell this series like no other, so the odds are for a full compliment of cast members for this Convention. Heck, it should be quite a convention. I am even thinking of going to it. Eek.

11-18-01. Monday January 28, 2002, the pilot telemovie will be aired. After that every Monday, the first season will be re-aired. The repeats start in January and go through the first season's 11 episodes after airing the telemovie. They can do either of three things after that: (1) start airing the new shows, thus bringing the 2nd season in April (spring) as opposed to June (summer). This is really an option. I found a press release from October which stated a summer or SPRING release. That makes it appear they are still discussing it. AND it would explain why Yancy Butler was reported partying in Toronto last week I do not think she lives there, so she is probably there for shooting which has already started or will start soon or there for some pre-production stuff. Or she could just be in town. Who knows? (2) They will repeat the telemovie and episodes and premiere the 2nd season in late June or early July. (3) They will either repeat the 11 episodes or not air them from April-June, and if airing them, stop in the middle to start the new season. If they are going with a June premiere, I suspect that they will not do a repeat cycle in April. But who knows? TNT has a bona fide hit on their hands (their best performing in-house show ever). Anyways, that's the story. From January-April they will repeat the first season and then sometime they will go with season two in June. That is how the official word stands, however, there is evidence that they may begin in April or May, or in July.

11-05-01. Update on Season Two. Due to probably the Sept. 11 2001 terrorist attacks, the plan of going with a telemovie in January followed by a half-season of 11 episodes in June has been dropped. The writing and casting phase of pre-production has already began and it planned to start shooting people in front of the cameras in late January 2002 in Toronto, Canada. It is unclear whether dumping the telemovie means just 11 episodes or 13 for season two. I would suspect it means 11 episodes. Balance is an important thing to TV producers! Season Two is scheduled to premiere in June 2002. John "Gabriel" Hensley has been signed as a regular character for season two, including a name in the title credits.

08/24/01. More in about TNT's approach to the WITCHBLADE series. It looks like the 13 hour order will mimic how the first season was designed: One telemovie followed by an 11 episode miniseries many months afterwards. The telemovie is already in pre-production and is scheduled to air in January, where it will have at least one encore airing before it is aired again in June. The new 11 episode mini-series (season, whatever you want to call it!) will then premiere in June after the telemovie encore. My take is that TNT sees WITCHBLADE as a potential cult classic and will probably repeat this pattern as long as it can. Think about it. It can do the non-series telemovie and release it in European theaters once a year while airing it in the US in January to keep the domestic WITCHBLADE fans satisfied. If that weren't sweet enough, all they have to do each year is prepare half a traditional season (11 episodes) and the fans will love them for it. Because it has cult appeal, TNT can run it over and over again the rest of the year. ALSO, the January telemovie helps get rid of some sticky plot problems that the 2nd season would have to deal if there were no telemovie. Basically, for the series to make any sense, Sara Pezzini has to relive the last season over again! Can you say potentially boring? Well, the telemovie solves that problem. They can use that two hour block to bring the loyal 1st season fan up to snuff on how Ms. Pezzini relives her past with the intuitive knowledge she picked up in the first season, yadda yadda yadda. Then for the 2nd season episodes, they can go on to "virgin" territory and not have to worry about picky 1st season fans and alienating clueless 2nd season fans.

08/23/01. TNT has renewed Witchblade with an order for 13 episodes. Here's the Hollywood Reporter article announcing it:

Hollywood Reporter:
TNT flashing 'Witchblade' in '02
Aug. 23, 2001
By Jim McConville

NEW YORK -- It's expensive, but Turner Network Television's original series "Witchblade" might be putting more fannies in front of the cable network, which explains why TNT has reupped it for a second season next year.

Turner is plunking down an estimated $1 million an episode for "Witchblade," its action-adventure series starring Yancy Butler as a female New York detective who fights the forces of darkness with an ancient, supernatural weapon.

But it may be money well spent because its TNT's successful original series has done better viewer-wise than the acquired material it had been running before.

TNT president of original programming Robert DeBitetto said Turner has ordered a 13-episode second season.

DeBitetto said "Witchblade's" renewal is related directly to its first-season ratings performance, especially in its key 25-54 demographic.

"It's really nailed our key demos," DeBitetto said. "Nearly 60% of the viewers are 25-54, and over half of our viewers are in the 18-49 demo."

Tuesday night's season finale of "Witchblade" drew an estimated 2.2 million TV households, according to Nielsen Media Research, tying its top viewer draw for its season premiere June 12.

"Witchblade" averaged a 2.3 rating and 1.9 million households during its 11-episode first season. That compares with a 1.6 rating and 1.3 million homes TNT's Tuesday 9 p.m. slot averaged before "Witchblade" on a diet of off-network movies.

Produced by Top Cow Prods. and Halstead Pictures Inc., "Witchblade" will relaunch in June.

TNT has not been as successful with its other original series attempts. TNT's first dramatic series, "Bull," which cost more than $1 million per-episode to produce, was canceled in the spring before finishing its first run. TNT's other original series, "Breaking News," never made it out of the starting gate.

08/01/01. Along with the on-line petition there is a good old fashioned write-in campaign to re-new Witchblade for another season. Fans are including PEZ candy wrappers (Sara's nickname is Pez) in order to make the requests stand out. Send those letters and PEZ wrappers to:

Programming Director,
TNT,
1050 Techwood Drive,
Atlanta, GA 30318
United States
Also, you can e-mail you request to
tnt@turner.com. However, it is advised that sending actual letters by the the mail are more effective than e-mails. Many are doing both.

07/28/01. An on-line petition has started for a second season of Witchblade: http://www.petitiononline.com/Gauntlet/petition.html



MAILING LISTS

WITCHBLADE CHAT:
Wanna talk Witchblade? Why does it have goofy episode names? Join now!
WITCHBLADE MEDIA REVIEW:
When I come across any news about Witchblade, this is where I post it.




GENERAL INFO

Where to write about the show:

TNT
1050 Techwood
Atlanta, GA 30318
Attn: witchblade

Where to write Yancy Butler:

Ms Yancy Butler
TMCE
270 North Canon Drive #1064
Beverly Hills, CA 90210




PRODUCTION INFO

Produced by
Brad Foxhoven (producer)
Dan Halsted (executive producer)
Perry Husman (producer)
Marc Silvestri (executive producer)
David Wohl (producer)
J.D. Zeik (co-executive producer)

Original music by
Neal Acree (additional music)
Joel Goldsmith

Cinematography by
Anghel Decca

Film Editing by
Norman Buckley

Casting
Tina Gerussi
Irene Mariano
Barbara Miller

Production Design by
Jasna Stefanovic

Sound Department
Timothy A. Cleveland .... sound editor
Virginia Cook-McGowan .... supervising dialogue editor
Jessica A. Dickson .... adr editor
Paul J. Diller .... sound editor
Bruce M. Honda .... dialogue editor
Eric C. Hosmer .... sound editor
Rick Hromadka .... sound editor
Doug Johnston .... production sound mixer
Michael E. Lawshe .... supervising sound editor
Kerry Malony .... foley editor
Jennifer Mertens .... supervising sound editor
Wayne O'Brien .... sound editor
Kenneth Young (I) .... sound editor

Other crew
David M. Chisholm .... production assistant
Alan Chu .... consultant
Krisztina Meuring .... extras casting
Patricia Schweers .... assistant: Mr. Foxhoven
Katheryn Winnick .... martial arts expert



LINKS:

Official Website
http://www2.warnerbros.com/web/witchblade/home.jsp




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