Six years after MyNetwork TV’s failed attempt to launch U.S. versions of Spanish-language telenovelas as daily primetime soaps, Nickelodeon is giving it a shot. The cable network, in partnership with Mexican TV giant Televisa, has ordered 80 episodes of a daily, one-hour U.S. adaptation of the popular Mexican telenovela Reach For A Star (Alcanzar una Estrella) for Nick at Nite. Reach For A Star, which follows a teenage girl whose life changes completely when she becomes a star and wins the love of her teen idol, will be produced in association with Sony Pictures TV, with filming slated to begin in March for a premiere later this year on Nickelodeon’s nighttime block. Nickelodeon has already had success with an imported primetime soap, Canadian teen drama Degrassi. Reach For A Star will be co-executive produced by Emmy-winner Jill Farren Phelps (General Hospital) and Hisham Abed (The Hills). Josh Griffith (Young And The Restless) will serve as head writer.
Oprah Winfrey’s new weekly primetime show for OWN, Oprah’s Next Chapter, will expand to 2 nights a week — Sundays and Mondays — in February. The show, featuring Winfrey’s interviews with celebrities and newsmakers in their natural environment, got off to a strong start, posting OWN’s highest ratings since its launch last January with its first 2 episodes, but its ratings have subsequently declined.