VH1 is taking a breather from rehabilitating celebrities this year.
"Celebrity Rehab" and its spinoff "Celebrity Rehab Sober House" are not part of the network's lineup for 2012, ShowTracker has confirmed. The controversial shows are hosted by Dr. Drew Pinksy, whose plate has recently filled up with other TV projects.
Although the shows have not been canceled, no details have been announced as to when they might return. Season 5 of "Celebrity Rehab" and season 2 of "Sober House" aired last March.
"Celebrity Rehab" has come under fire after the deaths of two former cast members: Jeff Conaway, who appeared in Season 2, and former Alice in Chains bass player Mike Starr, who appeared in the third season, died from bouts with their addictions.
'Tis the season for the sixth-season finale of the serial-killer drama “Dexter,” followed by the freshman-season finale of “Homeland.” Claire Danes and Damian Lewis star in the latter series, a conspiracy thriller for our post-Sept. 11 world. (Showtime, 9 and 10 p.m.)
Romance of the nerds: The two-part special “Geek Love” spotlights Sci-Fi Speed Dating, a matchmaking service designed especially for the costume-clad Comic-Con crowd. So what time should my mom and I pick you up? (TLC, 9 and 9:30 p.m.)
Where my divas at? At “VH1 Divas Celebrates Soul.” Mary J. Blige, Kelly Clarkson, Florence + the Machine, Jennifer Hudson and Chaka Khan are among the singers taking part in this special benefiting music education in public schools. (VH1, 9 p.m.)
Feast and be festive with the debut of “Lidia Celebrates America,” a series of culinary specials with celebrity chef Lidia Bastianich, starting with four holiday tables: Italian Christmas Eve; Mexican-American Christmas; Chinese New Year and Jewish-American Passover. (KOCE, 8 p.m.)
There's no place like “A Home for the Holidays With Martina McBride.” The country music superstar (above) is joined by the ubiquitous Justin Bieber and the aforementioned Ms. Blige for her annual event promoting the cause of adoption. (CBS, 8 p.m.)
After Wednesdays night's last sing-off, it's Part 2 of the season finale of “The X Factor,” the talent competition noteworthy if for nothing else than reuniting Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul, the Bickersons of “American Idol” fame. (Fox, 8 p.m.)
A study in Scarlett: The glamorous Ms. Johansson (right) — star of stage and screen, tabloid fixture, red carpet sensation, sometime recording artist and onetime Mrs. Ryan Reynolds — is profiled on a new “Biography.” (Biography, 7, 8 and 11 p.m.)
'Tis the night before you-know-what, and that means holiday favorites like the 1946 classic “It's a Wonderful Life” starring James Stewart and the annual 24-hour marathon of the nostalgic 1983 tale “A Christmas Story.” (NBC, 8 p.m.; TBS, 8 p.m.)
Photos: "A Home for the Holidays With Martina McBride"; credit: Randi St. Nicholas / CBS. "Biography"; credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press
Denise Vasi has been cast as a co-lead on VH1's "Single Ladies," replacing the departing Stacey Dash.
Vasi, who has appeared on "White Collar" and the soap opera "All My Children," will join LisaRaye McCoy and Charity Shea in the series about three best friends who have different philosophies on love, sex and relationships. In a statement, VH1 said she will play Raquel, a savvy businesswoman from a prominent Southern family who is on a "quest to discover passion."
The romantic comedy will return for its second season early next summer.
Stacey Dash, star of VH1's "Single Ladies," is leaving the show.
"I have to be back in L.A. with my children right now and the 'Single Ladies' shooting location [in Atlanta] makes this impossible," said Dash in a statement to GlobalGrind. "I wish VH1 the best of luck with the show in maintaining the strong fan base we developed in Season 1."
VH1 in a statement said, "VH1 respects Stacey's decision and her commitment to what she feels is best for her family. We thank her for all of her hard work in making 'Single Ladies' a success right out of the gate, and we wish her nothing but the best in her future plans."
Dash is best known for her role Dionne Marie Davenport, the best friend of Cher (Alicia Silverstone) in the film "Clueless."
Dash played fashion store owner Val, one of three female friends looking for love. The show, which also stars LisaRaye McCoy and Charity Shea, is the first scripted series on VH1, and has been renewed for a second season.
In the special “George W. Bush: The 9/11 Interview,” the 43rd president shares his moment-by-moment recollections – illustrated with previously unreleased archival footage – of that darkest of days in 2001. (National Geographic, 7 and 10 p.m.)
Adore Adele? Gaga over Lady Gaga? Like a little Lil Wayne? The soulful British songstress, the fashion-forward dance-pop diva and the tatted-up rapper are just some of the many performers slated for the “2011 MTV Video Music Awards.” (MTV, VH1, 9 p.m.)
Serious foodies will journey far and wide for the tastes they “Crave,” and host Troy Johnson does likewise, visiting New York, Chicago and San Francisco in search of that perfect slice of pizza in the debut installment of this culinary travelogue. (Food, 8:30 p.m.)
Ahead of the curves: The new reality series “Big Sexy” follows Nikki, Heather, Audrey, Leslie and Tiffany (above, from left), five shapely young women looking to reshape society's notions of beauty while pursuing their own fashion-biz dreams. (TLC, 10 p.m.)
Hit movies like “The Hangover” often provide fresh plotlines that sitcom writers can then steal … um, borrow, rather… for their own shows, like when Elka (Betty White) goes MIA after her bachelorette party on a new “Hot in Cleveland.” (TV Land, 10 p.m.)
With the 10th anniversary of Sept. 11 bringing a flood of disturbing images back to televisions in the coming weeks, “Nick News With Linda Ellerbee” seeks to explain that national tragedy to its audience of young children, many of whom were not yet born on that fateful day. (Nickelodeon, 9 p.m.)
Legend has it that Joseph of Arimathea brought the Holy Grail to ancient Britain and hid it in a mystical place, near the spot where some of today's legendary pop-music acts – including U2, Coldplay and Beyoncé – can be seen performing in the new concert special “Glastonbury 2011.” (11 p.m. VH1)
Look at that big brain on “Megamind.” Will Ferrell provides the voice of the blue-hued super-villain (below), with Brad Pitt as his superhero archrival, Metro Man, and Tina Fey as a plucky girl reporter in this computer-animated 2010 send-up. (HBO, 8 p.m.)
Bio is the first network out of the gate with an Amy Winehouse special, announcing Monday morning that it will premiere “Bio Remembers: Amy Winehouse” at 8 p.m. Eastern on Monday night.
In what the network is calling an “intimate look at her tumultuous life,” the special will retrace Winehouse's modest beginnings -- well before her 2003 Island Records release "Frank" -- through her Grammy and platinum-selling success of 2006’s acclaimed “Back to Black.” It also will document numerous elements in the personal life of the musician, who died Saturday at age 27, including her struggle with addiction and her dark and at times destructive romance with husband Blake Fielder-Civil.
Several other television tributes to the late British pop-soul singer are likely. VH1’s "Behind the Music," which recently aired a Mary J. Blige special, would be a logical venue. A network spokesman did not confirm any new special but did say that VH1 sister channel Palladia will air “MTV Live: Amy Winehouse,” a series of performances, on several days this week, including Tuesday at 8 p.m. Eastern, Wednesday at 11:30 p.m. Eastern and Thursday at 7 p.m. Eastern.
Meanwhile, Winehouse was a little less visible on television in at least one respect. Oxygen Channel’s reality series “The Glee Project” cut an Amy Winehouse joke when re-airing a recent episode.
What would you do if you had the “Same Name” as a celeb like former “Baywatch” star David Hasselhoff — besides change your name, we mean? Perhaps you'd swap lives for a spell. That's the switcheroo premise of this new reality series. (CBS, 8:59 p.m.)
Things are looking “dicey” on “Entourage” as controversial stand-up comic Andrew Dice Clay — banned from MTV way back in the day, don't you know — will be getting his very own story arc when the showbiz comedy launches its final season. (HBO, 10:30 p.m.)
Too often, a local tragedy makes national news, then fades away before the facts of the case become clear. The documentary “There's Something Wrong With Aunt Diane” digs deeper, revisiting a horrific 2009 car crash in upstate New York that claimed the lives of eight people. (HBO, 9 p.m.)
The documentary “Google World” maps the many online territories claimed by the Web-based behemoth, while “Frontline” (right) visits “The Pot Republic” — also known as California — to examine marijuana use, medical or otherwise, here in the Golden State. (KCET, 9 p.m.; KOCE, 9 p.m.)
Life, liberty and the pursuit of beef, chicken and pork … mmm, pork: It's all on the menu in “Meat America.” Host Jamie Stachowski consorts and cavorts with carnivores from Chicago all the way down to Texas in this protein-rich special. (History, 9 p.m.)
Heidi, ho! Super-est of the supermodels and hostess with the most-est Heidi Klum joins mentor-mensch Tim Gunn and judges Nina Garcia and Michael Kors as the fashion-design competition “Project Runway” sashays into its ninth season. (Lifetime, 9 p.m.)
Are you ready to rock? No? OK, we'll give you a moment. How about now? Bon Jovi, Rod Stewart, Stevie Nicks and the Killers are among the acts putting on a jolly good show in London's Hyde Park in the concert special “Hard Rock Calling 2011.” (VH1, 11 p.m.)
Ben Affleck got back to his Boston roots when he directed and starred in the gritty 2010 crime drama “The Town.” But Johnny Depp would have done better to just stay home rather than play “The Tourist” opposite Angelina Jolie (left) in that pretty but pretty vapid 2010 thriller. (HBO, 8 p.m.; Starz, 9 p.m.)
Photo credits: Frontline; "The Tourist": Peter Mountain Columbia TriStar
Despite reports to the contrary, Tanya Williams, the estranged wife of incarcerated NBA player Jayson Williams, has not joined the cast of VH1’s “Basketball Wives,” the network confirmed Tuesday.
“She did tape a couple of episodes with us,” said Chris Delhomme, a network spokesman. “But she is not a regular. There’s several ladies that make appearances occasionally at dinner parties or other events.”
Last month, the network announced it was expanding the franchise with a new 10-episode iteration set in Los Angeles featuring some wives and girlfriends of players from the Lakers and the Clippers.
The new group includes Kimsha Artest, wife of Ron Artest, Los Angeles Lakers; Jackie Christie, wife of Doug Christie, former player for the Los Angeles Clippers, Imani Showalter, fiancée of Stephen Jackson, Charlotte Bobcats, Malaysia Pargo, wife of Jannero Pargo, Chicago Bulls. Returning will be Gloria Govan, fiancée of Matt Barnes, Los Angeles Lakers, and her sister Laura Govan.
Williams’ husband, Jayson, is the former Nets star who was sentenced to five years in prison last year for assault in the 2002 shooting death of a limo driver.
"Basketball Wives LA" will premiere in late August.
Photo: Retired NBA star Jayson Williams and his wife, Tanya, leave the Somerset County Court House in Somerville, N.J., after the defense rests in Williams' manslaughter trial on March 31, 2004. Credit: Daniel Hulshizer / Associated Press
"The stuff the movies are made about -- the furs, the money, the parties, the respect -- it's all great, but then at any given time the other shoe could drop," says Jennifer Graziano, creator and executive producer of VH1's reality series "Mob Wives," and daughter of the alleged consigliere of New York's Bonanno crime family, a man who is currently in prison.
The reality show, which ends its first season June 26, follows four women with personal ties to organized crime, including Graziano's childhood friend Karen Gravano (the daughter of FBI informant Sammy "The Bull" Gravano) and her own sister, Renee Graziano. Their tangled personal histories add authenticity to the show's alcohol-fueled cat fights -- and sometimes put Jennifer Graziano in an awkward position.
While filming the season, Renee's ex-husband (and thus Jennifer's former brother-in-law) was arrested in a big raid: "Renee called me at 5 a.m. in the morning, hysterical, crying. I'm like, 'Let me put you on hold,'" Jennifer said, then she mimicked dialing the phone. "'Get the cameras to Renee's house right now!' I felt like such a bitch."
Read more about how Graziano created the show -- and convinced Bob and Harvey Weinstein to produce it -- in Meredith Blake's Sunday feature.
VH1 will bring a couple of seminal shows out of mothballs, reviving "Pop Up Video" and "Behind the Music" with some modern tweaks.
The cable network also announced it's renewing a few of its contemporary hits, "Mob Wives" and "Love & Hip Hop."
"Pop Up Video," with its short but infectious theme song, was hugely influential during its run. It hasn't been on air for a decade, and network executives have ordered 60 episodes featuring current music videos and new graphics. The star will be, as it had been in the past, the pithy, informative, goofy pop-up bubbles that give bits of background on the song, the musical artists and the cultural context.
"For years, people have practically begged, 'Please bring back 'Pop Up Video!' " said Tom Calderone, VH1's president. "It's a show and format that now evokes nostalgia for VH1's young adult audience."
Not only did the show keep viewers interested in watching music videos they'd already seen roughly a million times, it influenced other networks to borrow the tactic. ABC's "Lost" and "Ugly Betty" used on-screen factoids to give viewers additional insight into the shows, and satellite service DirecTV is doing the same for complicated drama, "Damages." The "enhanced episodes" are kind of a cross between "Pop Up Video" and CliffsNotes.
TLC recently used the so-called "poptoids" in its royal wedding coverage, fitting in info bites while airing footage of the 1981 nuptials between Princess Diana and Prince Charles.
"Pop Up Video," which will return to VH1 in the fall, will incorporate some new twists such as interactive elements, user polling and user-generated pop up content. The videos will be available to view and share on VH1.com. The show's original co-creator Woody Thompson will return to the team as an executive producer.
"Behind the Music," another classic VH1 series, will return in June with seven episodes profiling such artists as Ice Cube, Mary J. Blige, Ricky Martin, Adam Lambert and Enrique Iglesias. The Emmy-nominated show will retain its documentary format, including interviews with the stars, their families, friends and colleagues.
"Mob Wives" and "Love & Hip Hop" revolve around gangsters and the women who love them (the former) and rappers and the women who love -- and may want to imitate -- them (the latter). Both unscripted melodramas have pulled in strong ratings in their first seasons.
The cameras never really stop following Audrina Patridge. If the reality starlet isn’t having her life documented by them for millions of viewers to consume, she’s getting ambushed by them for tabloid fodder. Her arrival at a popular Hollywood restaurant on a recent afternoon meant dealing with the latter as paparazzi stood by while she exited her Mercedes SUV.
“It’s so bizarre,” the 25-year-old reality veteran somewhat ironically said. “Like, how did they know I’d be here? It’s always strange.”
Patridge went from being an unknown aspiring actress who happened to be sitting poolside when an MTV executive was roaming by (“I thought I was getting scouted to appear on an episode of 'Dismissed' ”) to a reality star on one of the network’s most popular series, “The Hills.” She would go on to display her dancing abilities as a contestant on "Dancing with the Stars.” And now she’s helming her own show, "Audrina," on VH1.
And to think, Justin Bobby’s ex-girlfriend had intentions of becoming a psychologist.